Never Forget. Unless you already have.

Every year I reflect on my September 11th experience. Not that I don’t think about it the other 364 days of the year. But, on the 17th anniversary it’s at the forefront of my mind again. 16 years of reflection and the process doesn’t get any easier.

I don’t need to be reminded to forget. I live with the emotional scars from witnessing it firsthand. And, I was fortunate in my experiences that day and the many following compared to many. Honestly, I do a shitty job, most of the time, at trying to act normal and deal with what should otherwise be the daily stuff of life around me.

Today wasn’t easy. And although there were some greatly trying kids being kids moments, another car (or two) related issue(s), the TV dying, and the rest of the not-so-routine-but-that-is-life things that occurred … today was, is, and always will be a tough day.

The tri-state area is constantly changing and it’s pretty often I run across people who weren’t in the area during the terrorist attacks. They recall the TV images and newspaper headlines and their own whereabouts when they found out much as I remember my parents talking about where they were when JFK was shot or how I retell my own story from the day the Challenger exploded mid-flight. I try to be respectful of their recollections as everyone was attacked that day, not just NYC.

Although deep down I know that the anxiety they felt was a completely different. The fear was different. The depression was different. Proximity both physically to the events and emotionally to those even more directly affected than I was insist upon making it different. The TV cameras only caught fleeting glimpses of what it was like to witness it first hand and you cannot unsee those things that only you saw with your own eyes. You cannot unsmell the smells. You cannot untouch the aftermath. It’s the reality of how the mind and body internalize the full range of senses. And, then I remind myself PTSD isn’t a competition. It’s the sad reality we all as Americans who were alive in that moment could feel.

What’s even crazier, though, is I increasingly come across people who were too young, if even born, to remember it. They know only of the TV footage. And, unlike those people who lived it through the raw documentation of the day, what they know of the footage is the sanitized, made-for-TV movie version of it that’s been distributed since the Bush-era propaganda took root.

For better or worse, much of the nation is remembering 9/11 via a collective memory. One that we, as a nation, have created for ourselves out of a hodgepodge of sources. One that is reflective as much of those who weren’t there as it was of ones who were. One that is a reflection of a world dominated by post-script analysis and talking heads opining as it is of first hand stories. One that is reflective of partisan subjugation of Americanism as much as it is of those who put aside their collective differences inside of the most diverse area of the US to do more for each other in our time of need.

I’ve said it before, it sucks that the one time of year that New York City is part of America is when this anniversary comes up. Otherwise, it and the surrounding tri-state, as well as DC and to a lesser degree PA, are derided as cesspools (sorry, that would be the simpler “sewers” or “swamps”) of liberals (sorry, “libtards”). Worse, even on the anniversary, despite this national attempt at forced unity, the region(s) aren’t without their negative critiques from so-called “real America” as even the current partisan President broke with the national unity tradition to slitter into that approach.

This is, of course, despite the region’s contribution to the greater good of what America was, is and will become. And, how much of the great stories of unity and American identity originate from the NYC, NJ/CT/HVNY, DC/DMV, PA regions. Much like the memories of WWII, from the Auschwitz to Pearl Harbor, from Normandy to Hiroshima, have become part of American folklore and legend they’ve also become part conspiracy theory and denial three quarters of a century later, now we’re seeing less than a quarter century into our collective experience the unfortunate diluting the lessons of 9/11 coupled with the furthering of lie filled theories and asinine conspiracy laden opinions.

The undermining of what 9/11 was I guess is the most disheartening part of reliving it every year for me. It talk about it less and less in my daily life not because time itself has passed for me or I’ve become any more comfortable with it that it not longer impacts me in the same way, but, in part, because of all the noise that has taken up residence around the history of it overall. I long ago got tired of and then got over the idea that someone watching it on TV thought that was the same as being here and experiencing planes impact and towers fall and people evacuate and the interruptions to daily life that lasted days, weeks, months and even years after. I long ago got tired of and then got over the idea that people had a hard time relating to my first hand experiences and personal memories of the day, and weeks, and months, and years that followed.

I’ll be honest though, I haven’t gotten over the jackassary of people who call themselves Americans undermining what it means to be American by deriding NY while wanting to honor it.

And, I haven’t gotten over the jackassary of people who call themselves Americans and yet actively politically support and vote for partisan hacks who have sought to undermine 911 victims and their families, sought to undermine support for survivors and first responders, sought to undermine the region’s need for improvements in infrastructure, in prevention, in first response, and more. The votes against more Federal money and resources, more autonomy (at the city, state and regional level) to do undertake these tasks when Federal resources aren’t immediately available, and otherwise votes against the underlying American identity of the tri-state area as a punishment by the Republican led 114-115th United States Congress and Republican President.

And, I haven’t gotten over the jackassary of people who call themselves Americans and yet only subscribed to being American if you “stand for the flag” despite the fact that the act of protest is inherently American and that the idea of honoring the Constitution means recognizing inequality and confronting it. The people that insist their definition of being American is the only possible one having usurped the idea of America for their own authoritarian led police state ideal.

And, I haven’t gotten over the jackassary of people who call themselves Americans and yet only care about Vets, or those in active service, or pretty much anyone involved with any aspect of the military or first responders when it’s convenient to selective outrage and yet don’t do enough to support the needs of military and first responder personnel outside of waving flags and singing anthems as a counter-protest to legit protests. These people gave their lives for all of us in honor of the Constitution, quit playing lip service to the service they provide including the one they did for NYC, DC and PA and the nation in the aftermath that is all too quickly overlooked for a quick quazipolitical “stand now” type statements just like it wasn’t defined to those that actually lived through the chaos of 911 by the flag itself despite all those that flew. We lit candles in solidarity too and it felt just as American. Some of us stood in the dark, looked into the distance, looked into our hearts, looked at one another, and it was American. We gathered around nothing more than a piece of asphalt that had neither stars nor stripes and knew we were American. We sang songs that were’t the “Star Spangled Banner” in solidarity including other national hymns, secular folk songs, popular music and more and knew we were American. We wept together without having to stand, or salute, or recite anything to know we were American. We held hands together at all kinds of memorials, makeshift and dedicated, and knew we were American. We ate food together, from the breaking of “bread” as subs, hoagies, heroes, wedges, sammies, dagwoods, clubs, tacos, gyros, kas, dürüm, Yufka and many others I’m sure I didn’t get the opportunity to experience. Assholes that define American based on the flag and the anthem (and a need to show respect to the hot dog as a do a proxy for a the masculinity of a cock, no joke it’s a subset of the current Alt-Right American definition) a huge disservice to what it meant for all of us who defined our Americanism in the moment.

And, I haven’t gotten over the jackassary of people who call themselves Americans and yet restrict their empathy to those who are like them. Look like them. Act like them. Think like them. No, the nation is NOT defined by conservatives. No, the nation is NOT defined by whites. No, the nation is NOT defined by protestant christians. No, the nation is NOT defined by men. No, the nation is NOT defined by the white collar upper middle class employee. No, the nation is NOT defined by flyover state values. No, the nation is NOT defined by those without a “criminal record.” No, the nation is NOT defined by Koch-type corporate funding.

But what I haven’t come to terms with and cannot stand is the utter shitbaggery of people who call themselves Americans out of convenience. They’re more than happy to selectively promote beliefs and values an lifestyles under some Americaness guise. They love half the religious clause of the First Amendment granting them the ability to worship as they chose, without any respect for the second part that means their worship cannot infringe on my worship or lack thereof. They are too stupid, and short sighted to realize, they are laying the groundwork for any religion or belief system when it gains enough national prominence to ply it’s beliefs politially and religiously at the expense of everyone else. They are too arrogant to understand interpretation is subjective and American religious identity has changed considerably over the last 200 years and will change again.

But what I haven’t come to terms with and cannot stand is the utter shitbaggery of people who call themselves Americans out of convenience. They love the modern interpretation of the self defense clause of the second amendment while ignoring the historically understood first clause of a well regulated militia. They want everyone to have a weapon while forgetting that weapons during “regulated” periods managed to both kill political leaders out of political hate and destroy huge swaths of the population of of “your different” hate in ways conventional murder could never do, and continue to enable those who are not of either sound mind or sound body to murder fellow Americans in cold blood in volumes that no other industrialized, civilized or otherwise modern nation has.

But what I haven’t come to terms with and cannot stand is the utter shitbaggery of people who call themselves Americans out of convenience. They want to apply the idea of “due justice” when it’s convenient while ignoring that murder by cop regardless of color is a violation and use their privileged position of not being as likely to be killed to defend shitty policing while not be willing to realize they could still die as a Forth Amendment violation and have no recourse, despite their whiteness, or maleness, or middle classness, or christianess. At some point some aspect of them will inherently become a less than majority experience and their inability to show empathy or use intellect will cost them dearly when their approach allows, ney, necessitates the pendulum swings against them.

But what I haven’t come to terms with and cannot stand is the utter shitbaggery of people who call themselves Americans out of convenience. And yet act inherently against the foundations of American but can stand up, once a year, to “never forget” the sacrifices so may of of made. We didn’t chose to be ground zero. And, yet, we are. We are survivors. Of the attack. Of the clean up. Of the WMD retribution. Of the partisan lies. We didn’t chose to be victims of inherently Anti-Ameican sentiment by our fellow Americans. And, yet we are, and we not only have survived, in some cases, we have thrived form it to fight for America.

We fight for an America we know has scars. We suffered those scars and can empathize with those who are scarred too.

We fight for an America we know has flaws. We realize the flaws, our own and in others, and want to overcome them together.

We fight for an America we know has potential. We showed ourselves and the world what we could do and are encouraged by the outcome to keep trying more.

We are Americans. We – NYC, NJ/CT/HVNY, DC/DMV, PA – are an embodiment of American. In our diversity. In our tenaciousness. In our compassion. In our boldness. In our empathy. Stop “never forgetting” us and the aspect of America we embodied but once a year and embrace the spirit that drove us to overcome the attacks when most other places would have melted down and be inspired to take our comprehensive idea of community to a new level of American-ness. We weren’t perfect but we were a whole helluva lot better than the shitbaggery of people who continue to try and define American-ness as a division rather than an inclusion.

Posted in Opinion, personal musings, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

12 years ago

Apparently, 12 years ago this month I officially registered this account with WordPress.

If 2006 seems pretty late in the grander scheme of my compiling my thoughts on line to have set up a WordPress account, well, you’re correct.

If you have not read the “about me” or some of the old posts that touch on this take the time to browse.

It’s important to remember as an aside, Gen-Xers were officially the first internet and mobile generation. But, I will concede, we only had those opportunities because boomers allowed us access. A bunch of Boomers decided in the 80s to give Xers all kinds of foundation technology like Atari, Commodore, and Intellivision, among other lesser names as entertainment systems. They provided us with Apple and IBM machines in elementary schools and introduced us to Logo and Basic programming languages. They showed us what the first broadly distributed mobile phones and pagers looked like through their jobs. They brought home from work the first desktop computers and made us focus on using programs that supposedly had educational purposes.

As a tangent, my first memories were working with Apple IIe’s in a NJ elementary school and using Intellivision’s many plug in gadgets to help the system bridge Atari’s pure video gaming and Commodore’s early entry into personal computing thanks to my uncle who worked in telco at the time and I’d still like to think saw the importance to our exposure even if initially my parents didn’t. Don’t worry, when my mom caught on she found all the not-fun cartridges to force education into it. I still have Word Hunt nightmares.

My first attempt at creating a home for my work was probably on the original VAX system at my alma mater in the mid-90s. Through the campus VAX systems I began an email list that cataloged the goings on of the campus freeform AM radio station WSAM. To archive those emails I moved them to a text site originating on the campus servers. Parallel, I’d had my personal email address for a few years and through that they were just beginning to make web hosting available at the time and using my very crude, rudimentary skills I remember trying to hack together an archive of the emails as well.

Right around this same time GeoCities really began to gain traction and I set up an account to try and take the text based emails I was sending beyond just being archived into representing something of a music ‘zine. Trust me when I say what I produced originally was bad. And, had no visitors. The two are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but even attempting to hack together a music zine based on college programming and personal musing was probably ahead of its time.

GeoCities was an unstable, unprofessional minefield of Gen-X rebellion. Everything it should have been. Enter – the result of baby boomers trying to market to themselves and still not necessarily trusting of Gen Xers as we matured.

In hindsight, I’m not going to complain. AOL provided something much better suited for what I wanted to accomplish next online – creating a site that would anchor the early part of my career. I put my first official resume along with copies of the station and student news paper archive on it among other things. To tell you how early an idea this was, I had to carry reformatted paper copies of the website in a binder to interviews because some of the people I was talking to had no idea what a personal website was. Of all the WTF stories I have from my early career interviews this is the one that I look back on and think to myself how much I didn’t realize how my reaction to people dictated my career path. I was super fortunate to end up at a technology forward company for its time and if they know it or not, I was for them a technology forward employee at a time when the term didn’t even exist. for me existed next to the company website archives, which also sat next to Live Journal and MySpace and so on into the early 2000s. My original approach was to bare the safe parts of my soul along side of the more marketable parts of my intellect. So, most of what I posted were personal opinions about music and the music business along with select personal anecdotes. I knew all too well then how things could be misconstrued so I tried to maintain the same online persona as I did among my industry comrades and continuing education students.

27 May 2003 the original framework for WordPress was founded as a fork off the old b2/cafelog setup. It wasn’t until mid-2004 the version of what most of us know now would become WordPress actually became formalized. And not long after my first test accounts went up for work and fun.

For whatever reason I didn’t produce the blog you know now until 2006. There are older, more established, more prolific, more visited blogs from that era. But not many. There are even fewer examples like mine that exist for no other reason than as a personal diary. A recollection of who I’ve been online since I began online.

If you look back there are entries dating to 1998-1999 as I was able to reproduce them. So much stuff was basically in only two places, a local floppy drive and on whatever the hosting service was. And, as disks failed and drives went out of fad, and early cloud services changed their hosting on whims, a lot of stuff was lost, potentially forever. Things I have hard copies of if I ever get the time I’ll reproduce them to be posted as an archive but who knows when that might happen.

In the mean time, the last 12 years of undulating writing and posting has provided a pretty deep look at what my world looks like extending well beyond the music and business the blog was originally founded on to the inner workings of my soul if and when I felt like baring them. It’s gone through insights into where I hike, what I cook and eat, what I interpret of my daily life as a commuter, as a father, as a human. It talks about my interest in history, philanthropy and music as well as random things I collect like spam poetry and really bad wordplay and sarcasm.

So, hooray for me! It’s been twelve years! or twenty years! depending on your count maybe even more. Nonetheless it’s some anniversary, for some reason, so get reading!

Posted in business commentary, Opinion, personal musings, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Individualism versus Tribalism

I was forwarded “Do Americans Know How Weird and Extreme Their Collapse is Getting? Even the Dark Ages Would Laugh at Where We’re Going” by umair haque.

It’s a interesting thesis on the perceived downward spiral of the United States, particularly as it is portrayed the standpoint of dealing with Republican President Trump and fans. It’s a little campy and the research is very cursory and presented oversimplified, but it serves it’s purpose in trying to put this unique approach to society into a historical context. He’s right – there hasn’t been a major group quite like Trump Republicans, ever. And, he’s probably right that facism doesn’t describe them quite accurately. And, he’s probably right that theocratcs doesn’t describe them quite right. And, he’s probably right that not purely authoritarian either.

There’s an underlying concept here though that really stands out for me even though it’s not explicit spoken about throughout the article. It is especially noteworthy though since I’ve pointed out some of these examples as being socially problematic previously. This passage struck a chord an I believe needs further investigation:

” The idea that we should arm teachers, instead of protect kids from school shootings — militant capitalism. The idea that people should have to crowdfund insulin — techno-Darwinism. The idea that people should never be able to retire — neofeudalism. The idea that freedom is just the weak being exploited by the strong — neo-authoritarianism. Those are four more weird, ruinous, baffling ideologies — and just like theofascism, we’d have to go a long, long way back in human history to make sense of them. All these ideas are so strange, self-destructive, and fatally absurd, that they’re off the charts of history”

The author misses a big chance here to point out something very obvious — modern US society is split between those who believe in strict individualism versus that of tribalism, of every person for themselves versus that of a shared destiny. I think the former of those versus are how one creates a groudwork for perceiving everything as us versus them. And the former is also the one of Trump and his “fans” fully embrace, the one of where the Republican party has been moving toward for quite some time anyhow, the one that molds a lot of opinions even when people don’t realize that’s what they are necessarily using to defend their beliefs.

If individuals are solely responsible to and for themselves than any other individual could be perceived as a threat. Small groups of individuals temporarily bond with one another, not for the greater good of society per se, but the greater individual opportunity. It’s why hate groups and other closed ideologies aren’t tribalist – they often turn on themselves after a certain point because ultimately my individual need and belief forces me to see you as a threat. I’ll accepted you because we have some commonality for now and it was to my advantage, but when I’m done with you, I’ll find a difference between us and exploit it.

Individualism is how you end up with the individual need to own a gun to protect yourself because you don’t believe society would protect you. Despite the facts proving society is capable of offering broad protection by working together, individualists cling to the belief that it’s up to the individual to protect themselves. This splits into 1) Those incapable of self-protection are responsible for their own demise. 2) And a paranoid sense that any advocacy for mutual protection is really an attempt at weakening the individual so that they can be overtaken.

Individualism is how you end up having to beg for money to pay for healthcare because you don’t believe society is capable of taking care of you. And, no, crowdfunding is not an example of tribalism in this case. Only those individuals with the resources are able to successfully crowdfund for their health. Everyone is still on their own and it’s their responsibility to create a successful crowdfunding campaign. There’s an underlying premise that those that fail to maintain their health deserve their illness while those that are healthy are better individuals. While it’s proven that maintaining greater health and wellbeing is more efficient when the burden is shared it goes against the mindset of the individualist. They want to chose who they are willing to share what are perceived as finite resources. That’s why they support crowdfunding, if someone is undeserving of the individual’s help they don’t get it, if they are deserving they do. It’s up to the individual to dole out assistance as the individual sees if, because undeserving people shouldn’t be given handouts.

Individualism is how you get hatred for Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, and other safety net programs. Again, it goes back to the idea that individuals are solely responsible for themselves. If you really did work hard you would have saved money for when you were jobless or ready to retire and you would be using your own money to support yourself. Tribalists believe there is an inherent social good to everyone helping everyone else out in a time of need so they are willing to pool resources and take out what’s necessary. Individualists are paranoid that they might not get their fare share. Individualists believe that others who the individual perceives as didn’t do as much might get more than their fair share. The individualist believes if you become unemployed it’s your fault and therefor your personal responsibility to rectify the situation. The tribalist understands that lots of things are outside of the individual’s control and makes an effort to share resources in order to overcome those obstacles as a community. Individualists, though, as the cliche on capitalism says, believe they are just temporarily not-rich. And, so they are willing to forgo the idea of collective efforts now so that when they supposedly inevitably become rich they can enjoy those spoils unabated. Tribalists know individualists are stupidly working against their own best interest but cannot change individualists minds because individualists are inherently afraid to share, even if it helps them out to be on the receiving end.

Individualism is how you end up with viewpoints where everything is privatized – because the idea is that public works programs benefit people how don’t deserve it but if you are deserving you can afford or can obtain or otherwise can do for yourself everything. You don’t need public schools because you can home school or find a private institution to teach you. If you’re incapable of obtaining entrance to a private institution that’s your own fault and if you lack the basic knowledge to home school that’s your problem to solve too. You don’t need laws providing for clean air, clean water, clean soil, etc. If you cannot keep the water near you clean yourself then you should have to deal with the filth or find an alternative that does provide clean water. It’s not a collective effort by society to maintain clean water, it’s up to entepeneurial individuals to exploit the existence of dirty water in order to determine who is a deserving individual of clean water versus who is not. And, while a bunch of individuals might temporarily work together to create a clean water solution, it’s highly unlikely that their acting tribally, for as soon as one individual decides they are more deserving they will cut the other’s out, rationalizing they’ve done the most important aspect of the work and are therefor deserving of the reward. Since the rest aren’t tribal, rather than throwing the individual out of the collective and continuing to work together they will all decide to split the water and go their own way, each rationalizing the other was the problem.

Even in some so-called collectives like some Churches what you actually find isn’t actually a tribal community but a group of individuals who are all personally responsible for their own saving. So, while they all sit together and pray for being saved as a common goal, the path to being saved is an individual one. I will be saved because I prayed harder, longer, an was more pious and righteous as I did and when good things happen it’s because of my effort in my relationship with “our” god. If you fail at any point it’s because you didn’t pray hard enough, or long enough, or weren’t as pious and rightenous as you could be and it’s up to you, and you alone, to overcome that burden. Individuals judge other individuals and treat them even within the collective based on perception. Not all churches are like this, there are definitely tribal ones where the church community not only works together to help one another out but they are embracing of everyone else outside of the church that might need help as well. It’s everyone’s responsibility to pool resources in order to reach spiritual enlightenment, and everyone gets the reward of being enlightened together. But that’s not how many of the big churches function even if that’s what they try and sell to their parishes…

Individualism is why people insist upon phrases like pull yourself up by your own boot straps. While tribalism realizes not everyone can but everyone deserves an opportunity to still be up. Individualism, which is how the Republican party has been trying to position itself since at least the Goldwater era, is exactly how you have Trump fans that laud Trump’s own supposed successes with individualism while exacting their own version of it. It’s why they old up racist, sexist, xenophobic slogans because the have nots, the thems, the others deserve to be told they don’t belong while they themselves as individuals they are just fine.

Afterall according to these particular individuals — it’s an immigrant’s responsibility to enter the country “legally” even if the reality is they tried and both the laws themselves and the current administrations interpretation of applying the law is inherently convoluted — that a person’ of color’s responsibility to not have an interaction with the police even if the reality is the police were responding to a false alarm, providing convoluted instructions that don’t always follow their own protocols or the law, and hide behind a excuse of ‘fearing for their lives’ that is obviously in many cases steeped in personal bias and bigotry — it’s a woman’s responsibility not to become pregnant so that they don’t have to worry about abortions or breast feeding or being treated illegally by their employer even though men supply the semen and have the stereotype sex drive as well as dick hardening pharmaceuticals that help make pregnancy possible in the first place.

So, while I get what the author was trying to do analyzing this new era of Trump inspired social engineering, they’re too focused on disproving some of the typical language used to describe Trump (facist, theocrat, etc.) that I think they miss an opportunity to dig into that which they glossed over getting to that quoted paragraph.

Posted in Opinion, personal musings | Leave a comment

MPHnoise: Metropolitan People’s Hell, the Be Nice to New Jersey week episode

The first week of July is (unofficially) Be Nice to New Jersey week. And, thus the return of MPH noise radio ‘s #MetropolitianPeoplesHell broadcast on KAOS Radio Austin as a celebration of all things Jersey metal, punk & hardcore, PLAYING NOW

Few places on the planet are as diverse as Dirty Jerz so it only stands to reason the music scene would be a cacophony of sound too. Some of it is melodic and memorable. Some of it is caustic and chaotic. All of it embraces the dichonomy of being the Garden State and the Concrete Jungle simultaneously, reflecting the life and times of those who created it.

As a Dirty Jerz kid I have some pretty strong opinions on the glory of the Garden State and what it and it’s music scene personally mean to me. I’ve done this theme since 2014 and showcased the region’s sonic dominance as long as I’ve been a DJ. The most difficult part of the programming is really trying to narrow down the offering to a 2-hour show because there is so much heavy music to chose from. And, while it’s rarely thought of in the same way as NYHC or Florida Death or the Bay Area thrash,or Seattle grunge or any of the other regional scenes, NJ’s impact is invasive to a number of genres including punk, tech & mathcore, metalcore, hardcore, glam and much more.

Throughout this year’s edition will continue our yearly meandering from the hudson river into the meadowlands salt marshes and old mc1a-e landfill sites to the redtide of port newark-elizabeth and tarmac of EWR past the linden cogeneration plant and the arthur kill refinery region into the raritan river tidal basin and the cheesequake blackwater to the McGuire-Dix region and into the pine barrens past smelladelphia suburbs and down to the delaware bay…

And, we’ll do so with brand new devilish mosh monsters Apocrophex, Strychnia, Franchise and Toothgrinder. Next, feel the footsteps of the Big Red Eye moshing next to you with some deathly dances by Dim Mak, Dripping, Dystrophy, Framework, Fit For an Autopsy, Cognative, Replicant, Sentinels. Then, the cunning and crazy of the Wemategunis
will wipe up the dance floor with you through Discordance Axis, the Dillinger Escape Pan, Burnt by the Sun, East of the Wall, the Number 12 Looks Like You, Folly. Finally, you’ll feel the massive teeth of the Matawan Man-eater mulling your moshed body with the likes of Orchid, God Forbid, Rorschach, Fortheloveof, Scary Stories, Deadguy, the Bouncing Souls and more!.

While we’re moshing our way across the state we’ll learn about some of the far fetched facts that make NJ the greatest state in the union and how to support maintaining NJ’s return to its garden state roots through organizations like

If you’ve missed past episodes of #MetropolitianPeoplesHell you can pick up the stream on or for a limited time only you can get the downloadable show at or I hope you will tune in to Sunday night.

Dim Mak “Between Two Fires” Enter the Dragon (red bank)

Apocrophex Sovereign Symbol ÆTernalis (2018)
Dripping “Beyond the Grave” Bring the Suffering
Dystrophy “Demise” Wretched Host
Framework “Beyond Earth’s Shadow” A World Distorted

Strychnia “Hellfire Ramparts” Into The Catacombs (2018)
Fit For an Autopsy “Tremors” Hellbound
Cognative ” In the Forms of a Drone” the Horrid Swarm
Replicant “Shroud” Negative Life
Sentinels “Extinct by Instinct” World Divide (cue :13)
Discordance Axis “Jigsaw” the Inalienable Dreams (hard stop)

Toothgrinder “Phantom Amour” PA (2017)
the Dillinger Escape Pan ” Baby’s First Coffin” Miss Machine
Burnt by the Sun “Battleship” Perfect is the Enemy of Good
East of the Wall “Linear Failure” the Apologist
the Number 12 Looks Like You “Category” NuclearSadNuclear (watch long fade, hit next track around 4:15 fade by 4;40)
Folly “Serenity Now ” Insanity Later (watch long intro, 28 sec)

Franchise “Contact” Ghost Light (2018)
Orchid “Loft Party” Gatefold (watch track bleeds)
God Forbid “Inside” Out of Misery (cue :01)
Rorschach “Recurring Nightmare 105” Autopsy
Fortheloveof “Immerse” Feasting on the Will of Humanity
Scary Stories “Rope” Rope
Deadguy “Angry Dwarf” Screaming (end 3:22)

the Bouncing Souls “PRMC” the Bad, Worse & Out of Print

Posted in Entertainment, mixtape, music, radio show, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Quick Quip: Poop, there it is

Potty training definitely ruins morning coffee but makes for awesome poop inspired classic rock lyrics. I mean, you have to kill time waiting for it to happen some how an you can only read “Potty” so many times before it’s no longer funny asking where kitty goes.

While, passing off Britney’s song is pretty cliche at this point, there’s plenty of other opportunity to play with poop inspired lyrics, including:

Here’s a select offering of what we’ve used so far:

here’s something happening here
What it is ain’t exactly clear
There’s a kid on the potty poopin’ over there
Telling me I got to beware
I think it’s time we stop, children, what’s that sound
Everybody smells what’s going down

Momma told me to poop this way
Pee this way
Poop this way
Now, get me the potty…

We Will, We Will, Poop, Poop
We Will, We Will, Poop, Poop
Buddy you’re a boy make a big noise
Poopin in the potty gonna be a big man some day
You got poop on your butt
You big poop man
Poopin in the potty now every day

We don’t want no poopy diapers
We don’t need no pampers now
No wet diapers are on our bottoms
People, leave the toilet paper for us!
All in all it’s just another poop in the pot

Get your pee pee flowing
Head out to the potty
Lookin’ for clean undies
And whatever comes our way
Yeah dad we’re gonna make it happen
Take our poop on this potty
Poop and Pee all at once now
And explode in the pot
Born to go Potty
Born to go Potty

Oh, believe me, I could go on… but could you handle it?

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Birth of a Nation

It actually is not all that humorous that people don’t understand the significance of July 4th in United States History. Since the days of email chain letters I’ve seen everything from it being treated as a proxy for Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day, Armed Forces Day, Constitution Day, the beginning of the Revolutionary War, the end of the Revolutionary war, the end of the Civil War, the Day of Infamy, the day of Remembrance and probably at half dozen other historically significant but occurred on a different day type of honorariums.

Independence Day “technically” occurred July 2nd when the Second Continental Congress approved a resolution, “The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America,” declaring the American colonies were no longer part of the British Empire, but rather a new nation, the United States of America. The draft prose was crafted by the Committee of Five consisting of John Adams of Massachusetts, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, Robert R. Livingston of New York, Roger Sherman of Connecticut, and, of course Thomas Jefferson of Virginia who is often credited with it’s most flourished prose.

However, the July 2nd vote has its roots in a 10 May 1776 resolution promoted by John Adams and Richard Henry Lee calling on colonies without a “government sufficient to the exigencies of their affairs” to adopt new governments. The initial result was “The Preamble” which was adopted 9-4 by the Congress on 15 May 1776 after several days of debate. The preamble established the legal framework to which the Colonies sever ties with the Crown. But, since the document was effectively incomplete and the vote not unanimous it set the stage for the Virginia Convention for the creation of a a formal Congressional declaration of independence. This was advanced by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia’s three-part resolution to Congress on June 7.

28 June 1776 “A Declaration by the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress assembled” was presented to Second Continental Congress. It lie in wait for several days before the unanimous vote occurred and went through several final edits before it’s publication on July 4th. Among the signatories there were conflicting beliefs as to if the May 15th preamble, the July 2nd vote, the July 4th publication or the adoption of the Articles of Confederation were the most important days. However, the general populous came to know the publication date as the time to celebrate the new nation, although it took almost another 100 years till the US Congress of 1870 made Independence Day a Federal Holiday.

Of course, as we all know, simply declaring one’s self independent and actually becoming an sovereign, independent, recognized nation are vastly different things.

The Revolutionary War to sever ties with the British essentially began almost a full year before The Declaration on 18 April 1775 when 700 troops were sent to confiscate militia ordnance stored at Concord and fighting broke out. The American Revolution would continue to escalate to the point where King George issued a Proclamation of Rebellion on 23 August 1775 formally recognizing the military insurrection in the Americas almost nine months before the Colonies began The Declaration process..

The Declaration itself was just a formality. Both the Secessionist Colonies and the Crown already acknowledged the rebellion was more than just a local insurrection and due to ongoing hostilities between the British Empire and the French, Spanish, and Dutch the impact of the war was international in scale.

The war for the United States territory continued until the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown October 17, 1781. However, hostilities in between the US allies of the French, Spanish and Dutch against the British continued for several more years drawing out the end of the American Revolution. The military hostilities officially concluded 3 September 1783 and the final British garrisons departed 25 November 1783.

However, a secession of hostilities alone does not end a war. Preliminary peace articles were signed in Paris on 30 November 1782 but it the United States Congress of the Confederation didn’t ratify the Treaty of Paris until 14 January 1784 while the rest of the signatories exchanged in Paris on May 12, 1784.

Dutch were the first allies to formally recognized the United States as a sovereign power April 19, 1782 followed by the French and Spanish during the Paris peace process. The British, however, appeared to have a more difficult time dealing with a free and sovereign United States. Although no formal war broke out disputes over North American boarders, trade and American alliances with British enemies continued to provide an undercurrent of British disdain for a free and sovereign United States.

The Jay Treaty was signed in 1794 in an attempt to broker a functioning relationship between the nations to facilitate trade. It acted, in effect, as temporary understanding between the US and Britain as to the United States’ existence and acted as insulation for the United states from the continuing Franco-British hostilities in Europe. However, the failure of the Monroe–Pinkney Treaty of 1806 under Jefferson set the state for the United State’s entrance into the Napoleonic Wars through the North American War of 1812 and Britain’s last attempt at undermining the US as a nation.

The United States finally gains the full recognition by the British with the 24 December 1814 Treaty of Ghent. The two countries would continue to be at odds and face off internationally on boarder disputes and trade for many more decades but from this point forward the British generally respected the United States’ sovereignty and there were no further wars on US soil between the two nations 39 years after the first shots of freedom were fired.

Of course, just like declaring independence doesn’t actual grant one sovereignty, simply ending military hostilities with one’s colonial masters does not a nation make. The Colonies under the Continental Congresses were simply a collection of like minds working together – an informal understanding between individual states. And, it would take more than just calling the collection of states working together The United States of America to actual create such a nation.

The process began during the war effort through the Continental Congress and the first official version of formalizing the alliance between the former colonies under the new nation was the Articles of Confederation. This

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They came for the Republicans

They came for the party of Abraham Lincoln. A party rooted in the “classical liberalism” of the time and the ideas of the likes of Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Adam Smith, Jean-Baptiste Say, Thomas Robert Malthus, David Ricardo and others. A party established on civil liberties and the discontinuation of slavery as well as the possibilities of economic freedom through industrialization, urbanization and more. A party that drew progressive reformists, ex-National Republicans, ex-Free Soilers, ex-Whigs and more who wanted to stand against the Know Nothings, Traditionalists and post-crown conservatives that represented right wing beliefs of the time.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was still the party of Lincoln, and I wanted to love the watered down, revisionist interpretation of a non-political Lincoln as an ignorant 2018 “Republican.” After all, according to Mount Rushmore, he was a “founding father” or something.

Then came for the party of Theodore Roosevelt. A party that survived against the conservative Democrat Party of the time and the advances of the Reconstruction era’s Third Party and Fourth Party and even so-called conservative Fifth party approaches to politics including Traditionalists, Post-crown Conservatives and anti-Reconstructionalists. A party that continued to embrace Lincoln era liberalism supporting social reforms and economic advancement that would eventually lead to the creation of (the other Roosevelt’s) New Deal ideologies and the eventual foundation of the progressive Bull Moose party when reformists began to try and draw the Republican party to more moderate tones.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was still the party of Roosevelt, and I wanted to love the watered down, revisionist interpretation of a non-political Roosevelt as an ignorant 2018 “Republican.” After all, according to Mount Rushmore, he was a “founding father” or something.

They came for the party of Eisenhower and Rockefeller. A party who were post-war versions of being moderate. A party that still respected Lincoln’s liberalism and wanted to uphold Reconstruction and social reform. A party that still respected T Roosevelt’s liberalism that had led to the now progressive Democratic party’s New Deal. A party that wanted to uphold the status quo of economic and political reform and championed the idea of bringing the nation together against common enemies. A party that albeit was no longer truly liberal represented an unlikely version of moderate idealism and was willing to work with the reformed Democratic Party across the aisle. A party that initially condemned the influences of extremism in the party such as the Southern Dixicrats, Red Scare Propagandists, anti-laborists and others.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was still the party of Eisenhower and Rockefeller. I wanted to love the watered down, revisionist interpretation of a non-political Eisenhower and Rockefeller as an ignorant 2018 “Republican.” After all Eisenhower and Rockefeller Republicans were my parents or grandparents, war veterans and other compatriots who I want to respect.

Then, they came for the party of Goldwater-Nixon era conservatives. The party that abandoned Lincoln and the Reconstruction in favor of embracing Dixicrats and the Jim Crow Movement. The party that abandoned Roosevelt reformists and the New Deal for a bastardization of the libertarian utopia and the likes of the Conservative Caucus of State Legislators with Mark Rhoads. The party that abandoned post-war unity by embracing fear and evoking anger such as through the Red Scare propaganda embraced by the likes of McCarthyism. The party of the anti-urbanism of Robert Moses’ suburban sprawl at all cots. The party that embraced business above the common man and the vestages of the labor movement from the influence of Prescott Bush and others. The party that tried to turn it’s head away from Watergate and Nixon’s despot tendencies. The party

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was still the party of the rose colored conservative vision of 60s-70s Republicans pre-Nixon resignation. I wanted to love the watered down, revisionist interpretation of an untarnished Republican party that was my truthiness utopia of a post-WWII American Dream. After all these were supposedly still Republicans who were representing what my parents or grandparents, war veterans and other compatriots thought and I wanted to respect.

Then, they they came for the party of Reagan. The party of “winning one for the Gipper” by continuing to trade on the goodwill and mount Rushmore status of progressives like Lincoln and Roosevelt. The party that forgave Nixon. The party that created the Iran-Contra scandal and avoided Reagan’s impeachment by implicating, and then forgiving the likes of Ollie North, Clair George, Caspar Weinberger, Robert C. McFarlane and nearly a dozen other top officials as well as scores of underlings for taking the fall for Reagan while committing treason (oh, and future President Bush lied under oath saying he knew nothing but wrote in his memoirs he was one of the few people who knew it all). A party that facilitated the Savings & Loan debacle that cost $160 billion in taxpayer dollars. A party that suffered through the Operation Ill Wind investigation by the FBI into massive corruption by several levels of government, military officials, and private defense contractors as well as dealing with the Wedtech scandal and others. A party that oversaw several lobbying scandals, Grant rigging and other financial scams by top cabinet members and other high ranking government officials. A party with nearly three dozen convicted ethics violations for everything from insider trading to improper use of taxpayer dollars across the Federal and high ranking state governments. A party embraced an anti-First Amendment approach to Freedom of Speech by actively creating Congressional committees supporting the war against in-proprietary and indulging special interest groups like the PRMC. A party that created a fake “War on Drugs” and programs that misused taxpayer dollars like DARE. A party that thought the religious clauses of the first amendment enabled conservative Christian sects of predominantly white, middle class, ruralites to flex their muscle to own social issues. A party that took an extreme view of the Second Amendment and cozied up to the newly founded lobbying arms of the NRA.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was the party of Reagan the so-called hero that ended the Cold War with brilliant lies like the Star Wars Progam despite the actual work of Pope John Paul and the diplomacy of the Catholic Church, Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev reformist movement of glasnost and perestroika, Kurt Masur’s German rebellion and more. I wanted to believe he solved the mid-East problem by freeing Iranian hostages and bombing Lybia despite the region’s further instability. I wanted to forget the endless contravercies created by poor leadership and massive egos with huge ethical lapses that continued to plague the party post-Nixon. I thought I honestly wanted to love the watered down, revisionist interpretation of a Republican party that relied on glossed over propaganda in order to create Reagan the Gipper as a superhero. I said nothing because Ronnie Ray-Gun was just a Garbage Pail Kid and not the characature of the Republican party it turned out to be.

Then came for the party of Newt Gingrich. The party of Scorched Earth cleansing of the Republican Party in the late 1990s that embraced the concept of a RINO (Republican in Name Only) and eliminated the cross-the-isle word where the likes of Blue Dog Democrats, post-war/old-world Republicans, moderate independents, and others were once foundational allies to making the government function. The party that dug up the Whitewater Scandal which ultimately produced next to no wrongdoing but managed to turn Presidential infidelity into an impeachable offense while hypocritically looking the other way while Arlan Stangeland, Robert Packwood, Ken Calvert,Helen Chenoweth-Hage, Bob Barr, Dan Burton, Robert Livingston, Henry Hyde, Pete Domenici and a number of others including, of course Newt Gingrich were accused of, admitted to, and/or convicted of having had the same kind of sexual impropriety and lied about. This was the party of ethics debacles, again led by Newt Gingrich as well as scandles like The House of Representatives Bank finding 450 members abused their accounts where more than half that were Republicans including top leadership, major campaign finance violations by Jay C. Kim, Dana Rohrabacher, Enid Greene Waldholtz, Joe Waldholtz, Rhonda Carmony, Dana Rohrabacher and a number of others including accusations of taking foreign money including that of enemy states. A party that abused it’s majority in Congress to attempt to change long-standing rules of decorum in order to undermine the existing Constitutional parity afforded to the division of Government.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was still supporting me as a so-called conservative; as a so-called constitutionalist; as a despite seeing the extremist cleansing of the party happening at the time. I denied the inherent hypocrisy. I overlooked the ethical lapses. I avoided the lies. After all, this was supposed to still be the party of my parents and their parents. I was told that Republicans were the Party of Lincoln. I was told they were the party of national heroes like Roosevelt, and Ike, and business brilliance like the Rockefellers even if I didn’t understand what that truly meant. I was voluntarily too blind and ignorant to see otherwise. And, I didn’t care. I just wanted to feel like I belonged and my voice was heard and the propaganda made me feel that.

Then, they came for the party of Bush. The party of the biggest attack on the United States since Pearl Habour on September 11. The party that began the longest, Afghanistan, and second longest, Iraq, military crisis in 100 years (and they would still compete for those titles even without Obama and then Trump allowing them to continue) and did so under false pretenses and then lied about a so-called “victory.” The party of the Tech Bubble Burst and the third biggest downturn in the economy in 100 years. The party of the Housing Bubble Burst and the second greatest downturn in the economy in 100 years. The party that was part of the original email contravercy and then conveniently forgot about the tens of thousands of violations of the Presidential Records Act of 1978, Hatch Act of 1939, the Federal Records Act and others. The party of failure such as of the Hurricane Katrina response, the original Walter Reed Army Medical Center neglect scandal, etc. The party of the CIA leak / Plame Affair featuring Dick Cheney’s chief political advisors, Karl Rove and Lewis “Scooter” Libby. The party of “Lawyergate” which was the politically influenced Dismissal of U.S. attorneys.

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was the party that got us through 9-11 despite the extensive work of Independent, Michael Bloomberg as Mayor of NYC, Moderate Governor George Pitaki of NYS, Democrat Anthony A. Williams as Mayor of DC, Democrat Governor Jim McGreevey of NJ, Democrat Governor Parris N. Glendening of MD, Democrat Governor Ed Rendell of PA, Democrat Governor Mark Warner of VA and others who led the actual local efforts which buoyed both the national economy and psyche. I said nothing because I believed the lies passing blame despite Republicans having holding the presidency, the House of Representatives and the Senate for a greater time in the last 25 years than the Democrats had, as well as having a conservative leaning Supreme Court and a near majority of State level government. I said nothing because I wanted to believe parents and dying grandparents that the party represented something other than what it appeared to despite it being painfully obvious this was the party of evil intent that Goldwater, Nixon, Reagan and Gingrich molded.

Then, they came the Tea-publicans. The party of the so-called Freedom Caucus that shut the government down. The party of . A xenophobic cultural response to the first non-white President of the US. The party of anti-Constitutional actions using procedure to block any and every attempt at abiding by decorum from budgets to the assignment of Supreme Court Justices. The party that

I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was the party for me in spite of it’s inherent hatred for the founding progressives like Lincoln, and it’s highest ranking left leaning voices like Roosevelt and even it’s national heroes like Eisenhower. I said nothing because I wanted to believe the Republican party of the twenty-teens was the party for me in spite of abandoning the last vestiges of centralist policy that Reagan and Bush still played up to pubically. I said nothing because I was a closet bigot who agreed with the Dixicrats and the dog-whistles of Goldwater and Nixon’s Southern Strategy and Reagan’s Welfare Queen approach to minorities. I said nothing because I agreed with

Then came the anti-Trump Republicans. This is the republican party of the Alt-Right. The party of subordinates to a cult of personality. The party enabling an authoritarian coup of Constitutional ideals and cultural decorum. If Goldwater purged the founding liberals, and Gingrich purge the remaining moderates, the Trump era purged nearly everyone remaining that wasn’t an extreme right wing ideologue. This is the party that resurrected Nazi propaganda. This is the party that revived KKK propaganda. This is the party that embraced misogyny. This is the party that enabled the furthest right of Conservative Christian ideology. This is the party emboldened by xenophobia. And, this is a party happy with a 30% approval rating if it meant it was speaking only to the most ardent supporters at the most far right of the political spectrum and those too ignorant to understand otherwise.

I said nothing because I believed I wasn’t deplorable. I believed I wasn’t a bigot, a sexist, a xenophobe and that I believed I respected the Constitution and even myself. I wanted to believe it was everyone else who was a RINO None of these were true, of course. But, I believed Republicans were still the party of Lincoln despite my ignorance of history, my blind ideology, and my paragon of being the deplorable I was accused of being. I’s American In Name Only and I want to Make Myself Great in my own mind. My name is a Republican voter in the twenty-teens.

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