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Archive for the ‘Breathing’ Category

Closing up shop

I’ve been writing and collecting stories, and they will be archived here indefinitely. I was too busy packing and moving, and then spending the past month on the west coast. I plan to update the site with all the content that is missing here, but there won’t be anything new here.

New projects are coming soon. My next job and next radio show will both begin before the end of summer. Right this second, you can CLICK HERE to see the last ten articles I wrote for Raw Story in May.

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Jeff Abrams of Boise Community Radio and Lupito Flores of KYRS Spokane have teamed up to make the case for financial support of independent, noncommercial radio projects like theirs for the latest newsletter from Social Justice Fund.

Here is an excerpt:

After lifting a decade-long application freeze, the FCC has recently awarded a wave of noncommercial broadcast licenses for grassroots organizations to establish new locally programmed, community-based radio stations across the country. These groups now have a powerful opportunity to use the ubiquitous nature of radio to re-connect communities – giving citizens their voice back and establishing new resources as indispensable as any city park, library or firehouse. Among other benefits, these new facilities will empower listeners and nonprofit groups by expanding awareness and mobilization capacity on local issues such as freedom of speech, women’s issues, cultural identity, arts and humanities, public health, environment, disability awareness, social welfare, and public governance.

Many new licensees have also recently received federal grant funding from the U.S. Department of Commerce to build these facilities. However, these awards are generally tied to a 25% local matching funds requirement.

Read the complete piece at the Social Justice Fund website.

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I’m sad to report that today is my last day in Austin. They have been a fattening two weeks, and unfortunately some of the best food I ate was not photographed. I neglected to take pictures of the Spicy Bleu Burger and Goat Cheese Salad from Alamo Drafthouse, the Tinga Nachos at La Condesa, the Green Chili Queso from Torchy’s Tacos and the tasty late night eats from 24, Magnolia and even Taco Cabana. I did get some good food photos, and they’re all here. Enjoy. I did!

Brisket at Ruby's BBQ

Ruby's BBQ talks smack

The pits at Ruby's BBQ

The beef at Ruby's BBQ

Brisket taco at Serrano's

Fish tacos at Serrano's

Beef tacos from Serranos

Blood Orange meringue pie from The Highball

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These people are having an amazing weekend.

I wasn’t at the Digg party at Stubb’s. Was planning to document the setup of Alamo’s Rolling Roadshow event at Hotel San Jose, but when I arrived, the screen was already blown up. So there went that plan.

I was fortunate enough to get a few minutes with Josh Jacobs who seemed to be captaining the ship for the Rolling Roadshow team. They are planning a few regional events and possibly a big excursion for the summer, which I hope to plug into at some point. They run real 35mm film projectors inside these trucks.

So my next option was to get in line early for SATURDAY NIGHT, a new documentary about life behind-the-scenes at NBC’s long-running sketch comedy show, directed by James Franco. I walked, bussed and walked over to the Alamo South Lamar location to get in line, a full hour early.

Everybody you see in the picture with the marquee got into the movie. Everyone in the picture below didn’t. Until I went to take the picture, I was standing behind the dude in the baby blue shirt.

Rough day. To bed early, there’s plenty to do over the next seven days…

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If I don’t get a chance to publish here every day these next two weeks, I will point to the work I’m doing for Boise Weekly and Common Frequency. You can bookmark my dedicated blog page on Boise Weekly, but the new Common Frequency site is still in beta mode for now. Austin is warm and humid and I’ve already seen a few of my best friends here. The eating has begun.

Remodeled Wheatsville Co-Op Deli photo by Eric Pils

Late night flight into town was followed up by a trip to Taco Cabana for cheap chain food. On my first full day in town I visited Wheatsville Co-Op for the first time since the remodel. Wow. And for lunch I had all the popcorn tofu I could eat, washed down with Austin’s own Sweet Leaf Tea. Later on I ate tacos al pastor at Polvo’s with no camera. Dangerously good. Best Texas beer so far is Real Ale Phoenixx Double ESB. Also digging the lighter St. Arnold Spring Bock.

One important note, my mixtapes for SXSW are not available to download from the Boise Weekly site. You have to go here to do that.

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Today’s leaders are armed with powerful high-tech weaponry and the pervasive influence of government-friendly Hollywood executives and a highly partisan echo chamber. TV News needs to start doing better reporting on the effects of what has actually been done by politicians and other officials and stop spending so much time covering stories that perpetuate the info Americans keep getting wrong.

Ask around. While TV News continues to act, for example, as a Dick Cheney bullhorn, a mass of Americans are in the palm of his hand. Too many citizens are ravenous for an unnecessary war with Iran, defensive about waterboarding in secret prisons, callous toward the widespread killing of innocent civilians, and oblivious to endless global military occupations. As so many millions of impressions are made with selective storytelling and repeated with carefully constructed talking points, these subjects can hardly be brought up in public without preparation for tough conversations!

TV News rarely ever connects the dots. The outcome of their cursed desire for more and more exclusive access is harm inflicted on so many thousands of American youths by the US military, as well as Congress. The ex-CEO of Halliburton influenced the very same government contracts now creating minor, yet palpable public outrage whenever abuses and fraud are revealed. The apparent shortage of public disapproval for war profiteering is enabled by the willingness of TV News to omit the very real, very human stories of young Americans (and innocent civilians) destroyed by US occupations.

So get to work, TV News, reveal the rest of the story. Fabulous ratings await. Tell the stories of veterans fighting to overcome lost limbs. Explore the research on birth defects from chemical weapons. Shed light on the psychological damage of PTSD and the flow of veterans toward homelessness. Check out the differences between repressive regimes and their civilian populations. Americans deserve to know all that tax and national debt is being spent on.

Or else ever-evolving news organizations and public interest activists will eventually reach a large enough audience through other technologies besides TV to inform America about the ugly side of the war machine. The word is already out about complicit media institutions who have perpetrated a massive cover-up of their own involvement in domestic propaganda, disinformation on world affairs, even illegal wiretaps.

Too many patriotic, liberty-minded Americans have already begun to investigate. Once more reporters and activists empower an American public equipped with enough knowledge to use leadership and diplomacy instead of the bodies of so many thousand American youths, and foreign policy changes, a decreasing audience will still look to the knuckle-dragging TV News to hear the latest utterance of the mouthpiece.

The time to invest everything in investigation is now. The grip of TV News on the American psyche is already getting threatened by developments in social technology and the corporations who own and/or control TV News could be dramatically weakened by an administration determined to push through public interest technology policy in Congress and at the Federal Communications Commission.

An informed populace will decide for itself what is best for democracy. The age of endless foreign wars and skyrocketing national debt will end. Hopefully as the empire crumbles, Americans will finally force the US government to become more democratic. We’ve sung of liberty but in order for freedom to ring truth must be amplified.

Otherwise, the cycle of powerful actors scheming up black ops, convinced their activities will not receive the illumination of public disclosure, will only continue. And the American public will keep making grave fundamental mistakes in assessing the rapid developments in global politics – a dangerous precedent for human life and liberty.
Gavin Dahl is a contributor to Raw Story, Boise Weekly, Common Frequency, Reclaim the Media, KRFC Radio & other independent media outlets & nonprofits.

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Photo by Howard Rosenfeld

When you realize Budd Inlet is at the bottom of South Puget Sound, the photos taken this week in Olympia, WA by my friend Howard Rosenfeld really make you go WOW! I mean, that water basically is the Pacific Ocean.

Meanwhile, Project Censored has a story out today saying we just experienced the hottest decade on record.

“The decade ending in 2009 was the warmest on record, new surface temperature figures released Thursday by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration show…. 2009 was the second warmest year since 1880, when modern temperature measurement began. The warmest year was 2005. The other hottest recorded years have all occurred since 1998, NASA said.”

Global temperatures varied because of changes in ocean heating and cooling cycles. `When we average temperature over 5 or 10 years to minimize that variability,’ said Dr. James E. Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, one of the world’s leading climatologists, `we find global warming is continuing unabated.’”

–– John M. Broder NY Times Jan. 21

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