Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Everything I Needed To Learn I Learned From The Godfather
Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer.

Never tell anybody outside the Family what you're thinking again.

Don't ever take sides against the Family.

If history has taught us anything, it's that you can kill anyone.

Who's a better consigliere than my father.

Blood is a big expense.

A man who doesn't spend time with his family can never be a real man.
Lott Says Events of Recent Weeks Make Him Better
In New York Times: Politics

Better than David Duke? You know, the week the Lott story broke I got my first Mississippi quarter in my change. Had to make sure the design wasn't a hooded Klansman and a burning cross...
One of the things that's godawful about Joe Strummer's death: when the inevitable bombing of Iraq begins we're going to hear "Rock The Casbah" over and over and over again as rah-rah music, and 1) Joe didn't even write it, the drummer did; 2) it's not about that, "bombs between the minarets" notwithstanding, and 3) that sort of jingoism is the complete opposite of a man who had the guts to release an album called Sandinista! the month Ronald Reagan took office.

I heard this music at just the right moment in my life and it played a very big part in sending me in the direction I've taken.

Joe Strummer was to other rock musicians as Paul Wellstone was to other politicians: rough around the edges, brutally honest, forever torn by the compromises of sucess, and right on target. Go get some Clash music now, call it a late Christmas present to yourself. Or download it or burn it, that would be in the spirit of a band who lowballed their album prices by taking next to nothing in royalties so their fans could afford it. Do it now before the Homeland Security Department catches you!

Lyrics on a page don't do the Clash justice, you have to *hear* it coming at you at a thousand miles an hour, but since I'm numb to the point of inarticulate, I'll let Joe have a few bars.

Kick over the wall 'cause government's to fall
How can you refuse it?
Let fury have the hour, anger can be power
D'you know that you can use it?

The voices in your head are calling
Stop wasting your time, there's nothing coming
Only a fool would think someone could save you
The men at the factory are old and cunning
You don't owe nothing, so boy get runnin'
It's the best years of your life they want to steal

("Clampdown", 1979)

That first line - I never have figured out whether it's "(be)cause government's to fall" - a prophecy - or "CAUSE governments to fall" -a call to action. But I've found the question answers itself: enough action and you can make it come true.

Way Too Much Intellectualizing About The Clash