Thursday, April 30, 2009

Imogen Heap: Broadcasting Live From Maui

Late in the night after alerting twitterers, Imogen Heap plays live over Ustream:

Tweets Heap: 
Well that was different! I'm going to do one every day while I'm here. They'll get better. It feels strange you listening in to my nonsense. I want to catch the sunset on the west side tomorrow... will do one mid afternoon here. So, let's say, piano session no.2 at 2am GMT? 

She'll be here all week, folks. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Monday, April 27, 2009

Time to Reverse Gerrymander CA-36

As the Jane Harman wiretap mini-scandal fades to a muddled gray amid allegations and counter allegations, it's clear that Harman's 36th Congressional District is not as homogeneously stable as CA legislators anticipated when they gerrymandered it to a bright sky blue during the Bush years. 

In an effort to consolidate local Dem votes and protect incumbents of both parties, consultant Michael Berman(D) partitioned the area during the great redistricting orgy of 2001 to artificially join large parts of ultra-progressive Venice and union-heavy, Catholic San Pedro - absurdly amputating Harman's longtime hometown on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in the process. Harman moved to Venice while her more Republican-tolerant constituents on the Hill were pushed into Dana Rohrabacher's (R) 46th district serving North Orange County.

With the Dems safely in power, the wiretap incident has exposed the fissures in the contrived amalgam of the aerospace-heavy South Bay and the anti-war Westside as Harman's pro-Israel, pro-defense industry, pro-wiretapping, Blue Dog Dem politics grate on the nerves of the residents of CA-36's more progressive districts. Ironically, Harmon's 2006 and 2008 primary challenger, teacher Marcy Winograd, had to move from her Pacific Palisades home into a Marina del Rey apartment to oppose Harman's pro-war policies in the name of the "grassroots." In light of recent events, Winograd is currently mulling a second run.

I say take advantage of the upcoming Census to rezone the area to the contiguous South Bay. We would all be happier.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Flu?

Tracking the Swine Flu (map is interactive):

Purple = Confirmed Cases    Pink=Suspected Cases 
Deaths lack a dot in the marker.

View H1N1 Swine Flu in a larger map

Steve Aoki In The Sahara Tent @ Coachella

Steve Aoki @ Coachella last weekend. 

(I'm guessing the continuous white noise from the eagle cam will only add to the atomosphere, but you can always scroll down and pause it.)

Full first 10 minutes of show here. Last 10 with the Bloody Beetroots here.  Aoki and Bloody Beetroots MP3s here.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Eagle Cams on Catalina Island

[Note: If you see snow or a black screeen, you do not need a newer version of a plug-in, you just need to wait until daylight hours Pacific Standard Time. The Eagle cams shut down around sunset. And you now need to hit play to start the live streaming.]

One nest on the West End:

And another nest by the Two Harbors area of the island:

Thursday, April 23, 2009

GE CEO Immelt Gets Caught in Ratings War Crossfire

Outside, protesters representing FreedomWorks, an activist group led by former U.S. House Majority Leader Dick Armey, milled about bedecked in Mom Jeans and carrying "Just Say No to Cap 'n' Trade" placards.

Inside, at the already tense GE shareholder meeting, the eternal ratings feud amped up another notch when O'Reilly Factor producer Jesse Watters ambushed beleaguered General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt with accusations that Keith Olbermann allowed Janeane Garofalo to spew hate speech against Republicans on the MSNBC network, whose parent company, NBC-Uni, is a division of GE. Both Watter's employment by and Garofalo's direct attacks on Fox News went unremarked. Olbermann later happily fanned the flames by naming Watters in his Worst Person in the World segment (jump to 2:01).

"My biggest surprise was the open hostility to MSNBC," said GE shareholder Tom Borelli of the Free Enterprise Action Fund as he pushed his online petition in support of his four-year crusade against Immelt. "Any time MSNBC was mentioned, there was a rumbling in the crowd of 400 people," he added helpfully.

So Much Drama. Next time GE has a shareholder's meeting I'm going to smuggle in my cell and post live video. I'm a bondholder. That should get me in.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Clock Strikes 4:20

in Denver, CO:

in Golden Gate Park, SF, CA:

in Vancouver, BC:

Coined in 1971 as code for "a time to get high" by a crew of San Rafael high school stoners with familial access to the Grateful Dead, 4.20 is still celebrated as National Weed Day nearly forty years after the Waldos first met up at 4:20 in the afternoon to hunt for an abandoned patch of weed in Point Reyes, CA.

Janeane Garofalo's Remarkable Arc of Transformation

With Olbermann last week ripping on the Tea Partiers:

Back in the day working her stand-up act:

The Devil, it would seem, is currently displaying far less subtlety in his manifestations than in 1992. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Mountain-Thief Tormented by Pink Downy Handcuffs

He came to rob her hair salon. So Olga hogtied Viktor to the radiator with pink, frilly handcuffs, fed him Viagra, and had sex with him so many times he injured his genitals and had to go to hospital "to treat the torn bridle of his man merit," as he alleges in the police report. "He's a jerk," she said in her defense. 

(I know. Blame Mark Steyn.) 

George Harrison gets his Hollywood Walk of Fame Star

Paul McCartney and Olivia Harrison attend the ceremony Tuesday AM in front of the Capitol Records building.

And here's She Who Shall Not Be Named and Who Shalt Only Be Represented in Small .JPGs Lest They Become Graven (In Thy Mercy) getting her star:

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Oh crap. It's all over when you lose the dolphins.

China has the dolphin juju and we don't.  We do, however, have Michael Phelps and the SEALS.

Spain to indict UCB Law Prof for War Crimes

Scott Horton
reports that Spanish prosecutors will seek criminal charges later this week against Alberto Gonzales and five high-ranking Bush administration officials, including Boalt's John Yoo, for sanctioning torture at Guantánamo.

This is Your House Being Robbed.

Using a webcam security system, a Florida woman remotely observes her house being robbed while she is at work. After a call to 911, the Boyton Beach police surround the house and all is well. 

Neighborhood kids, one of whom she knew since he was eight,  can be observed lamely loping about, petting the dog, and stealing the Wii controllers @ 3:15, which is, I think, more typical than not for these petty theft situations. 

But for those of you who have ever wondered what it looked like while you were out:

Monday, April 13, 2009

Never Been Kissed.

Susan Boyle, unemployed, 47, never been kissed, lives with cat, stuns the judges on Britain's Got Talent.

I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I'm living,
So different now from what it seemed...
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.

Full lyrics here.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Top Ten: States with Highest Tax Rates

California isn't there!  All thanks and peace be unto you, Howard Jarvis and Prop 13.

The Forbes' article seems to prefer forcing the reader through a million clicks, so here's the straight list:
  1. Vermont
  2. Hawaii
  3. Connecticut
  4. Minnesota
  5. New Jersey
  6. New York
  7. Massachusetts
  8. Washington
  9. Wyoming
  10. Pennsylvania

Simian Sex Trade Shocks Community

Female chimps engage in meat swap. No word on whether the females' lack of prowess in the verdant fields of honest labor was due to lazy opportunism or a hostile work environment as yet untouched by the benevolent hand of regulation.

Sorry, no video.

Friday, April 3, 2009


The Daily Show With Jon StewartM - Th 11p / 10c
Rush Limbaugh Leaves New York
Daily Show Full EpisodesEconomic CrisisPolitical Humor

I thought Rush Limbaugh was already based in Florida for tax purposes? Learn something new, etc.

Disney Comes to Pedro

Some good economic news for the South Bay: Disney Cruises will move the Wonder cruise ship from Florida to the San Pedro - Los Angeles harbor starting January 1, 2011. Disney's series of cruises to the Mexican Riviera will create 2600 new state and local jobs, 130 of which will be reserved for the always powerful longshoremen's union, and attract an estimated $7 million in state and local tax revenue. (The article says $47 M, but two previous articles say $7M, so the realist in me says that's a typo editorial didn't catch.)

It is open to question how much of that tourist revenue San Pedro will retain as it is likely Disney will shuttle the boat's occupants straight to Anaheim, Land of Enchantment, before their merry little feet have had a chance to scatter any of that green pixie dust on local ground. San Pedro has been trying to gentrify the waterfront for at least a decade with local galleries hosting a Thursday night ArtWalk, cafés, and development projects like the recession-prone, near-empty Vue condominiums, but for now it remains a colorful, working class area of the port city, home to renters, not owners.

Maybe the Vue could get hooked into this Disney project and provide short-term accommodations more central to SoCal's other tourist destinations. An ocean view with a shuttle ride beats suffering in the alternately sweltering or gray and humid, stagnant atmosphere of land-locked Anaheim through which the aroma of highways and french fries has been officially mandated to waft at all times.