Wicked Things

Posted in Poem by chamblee54 on January 31, 2021

Poverty, Inc.

Posted in Library of Congress, Politics, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on January 30, 2021

Poverty, Inc. is a 2014 documentary about the do-good industrial complex. Governments, agencies, celebrities, and just plain folks are the players. They see a need in the third world, and rush in to help. Often, they do more harm than good. As the person in tsunami-hit Thailand, said to the man in earthquaked Haiti… you survived the disaster. Now lets see if you can survive the aid.

P,I was part of a documentary discussion series. The group used to meet in a church, watch the show together, and break into groups to talk. Now, the group sees the movie on their own, and meet on zoom. When asked how he likes to “give back,” PG says that he mutes his microphone when he is not speaking. This is also true of real life … mute yourself when it is not your time to speak.

One story is about rice in Haiti. The island nation used to have an indigenous food industry. Then big brother flooded the island with subsidized rice. The native industries could not compete, and faded away. The cycle of dependency moves on.

Someone (most of the Africans on camera spoke English) gave the analogy of a bonsai. One tree is outside, and grows very tall. The inside tree has a similar seed, but only grows to a meter tall. It cannot get taller, because the small pot cannot support a large tree.

What this analogy does not mention is the 99.9% of seeds that never get to germinate. Even if they do become a plant, the forest is a competitive place. Most trees never get to grow tall. The bonsai is in a controlled environment, with limited growth opportunities. Even at a meter tall, it does get to live. That seed did better than almost all the rest.

A viewing service was used to view P,I. The movie was supported by advertising. These commercials seem to be inserted at random, sometimes in the middle of a sentence. It is jarring to be watching a first world/third world story, and then be interrupted by a flashy sales pitch for auto insurance. There is an irony of using third world suffering, to draw eyeballs to 21st century capitalism.

The old story of the emperor’s new clothes comes to mind. Many of the people in the poverty industrial complex work for the emperor’s tailor. The travel the world, and make a good living. It is in their best interest to keep the racket going.

Bill Clinton makes an appearance. He says, in effect, that he tried to help, and wound up creating more problems. We cannot expect to hear anything like that from Donald J. Trump. P,I was filmed in 2014, when Mr. Trump was a reality tv star. Perhaps by doing little to help the do-good industrial complex, Mr. Trump wound up doing less harm.

Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.

The Narco State Rag

Posted in GSU photo archive, Politics, War by chamblee54 on January 29, 2021










This feature was written July 13, 2010. The situation in Afghanistan is little better. If we leave, the country falls into chaos. If we stay, we spend money we don’t have. It is a bitch.

Some people euphemize bitch by saying that something is a bear. Across the frontier from Afghanistan, the Russian bear is dealing with a heroin epidemic. Some say the United States suckered the Soviet Union into invading Afghanistan in 1979. The disastrous war that followed led to the fall of the Soviet Union. We are still dealing with the karma.

Tom Dispatch has an audio feature about Afghanistan, and the many unanswered questions about our war there. We invaded Afghanistan to get revenge for 911, and looked for a reason later.

At the 3:06 mark on the tape, when Tom makes a comment Afghanistan being a narco state. PG had a flash of understanding about the reason behind this war. This may even have been powerful enough to ignore the reports about a terror strike in September 2001, and let 911 happen.

The rumors of CIA involvement in drug trafficking are wide spread and long term. When planes went to Central America in the eighties to bring arms to the contras, they came back to the United States loaded with cocaine. There are stories of collusion with the government in Cuba. There are many, many more stories about connections between the US government and the drug trade.

When the Taliban took over Afghanistan, they cracked down on the poppy farmers. Much of the raw opium for heroin/morphine/opium is grown in Afghanistan. This was not a pleasing for the CIA.

Could it be that the real reason for our involvement in Afghanistan is to ensure the flow of narcotics into the hungry world? This would be a big cash cow for the CIA, although not enough to justify the amounts of money being spent on the conflict.

Pictures are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.








Cackles Weeps

Posted in Poem by chamblee54 on January 28, 2021

KKK Klickbait

Posted in GSU photo archive, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on January 27, 2021

The Washington Post (Paywall alert) enjoys KKK Klickbait. A recent example is Yesterday’s Ku Klux Klan members are today’s police officers, councilwoman says. Under the headline is a picture of some very fine people wearing squeaky clean bedsheets. The caption for the picture reads “A member of the Ku Klux Klan adjusts his hood during a 1998 rally in Texas. (David J. Phillip/AP)” Pictures for this repost are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

Stock photographs are widely used to illustrate stories. The photo in question was used in this story: Swiss police investigate KKK carnival costumes “The 12 people who dressed in Ku Klux Klan costumes during carnival celebrations in canton Schwyz are not guilty of racial discrimination, local justice officials say. The central Schwyz public prosecutor’s office said on Friday that the men had overstepped the mark on what was allowed at carnival celebrations and that common decency had been grossly violated. But the men’s behavior did not constitute the offence of racial discrimination, because they did not intend to convert people to the KKK, judicial officials added.” Video zeigt, wie Ku-Klux-Klan in Schwyz marschiert Wir benutzen Cookies und andere Technologien.

This is not the first time photos from European carnivals are used to illustrate American stories. The picture in the RNS story has this caption: :Supporters dressed as members of the Ku Klux Klan, using the occasion of Halloween to mask their faces from the police, express anti-Semitic views in Lviv (Ukraine) on October 31, 2009. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko”

“Students be careful, there’s someone walking around in KKK gear with a whip’: Indiana University student triggers scare after mistaking priest for KKK man. Dominican friar was spotted waiting for frozen yogurt at Indiana University. Students thought his long white robe meant he was a member of the KKK. Residential officer issued a warning telling students to be careful on campus. But it was later withdrawn when it transpired the man was in fact a priest.”

What Is Dirty About Louie Louie?

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Music by chamblee54 on January 26, 2021









The sixties were a great time to be a kid. As long as you were too young for a Vietnam Vacation, there were kicks to be had.

One of the more enduring legends was the dirty lyrics to “Louie Louie”. Recorded by an obscure band called the Kingsmen, the song was a massive hit in 1963 (It never was Number One). When WQXI put out lists of the greatest songs of all time, “Louie Louie” was at the top of the list. This is despite, or because of, the raucous sound. The song was recorded in one take, when the band thought they were playing a rehearsal. The vocals are difficult to make sense of, and rumored to be obscene. No one was ever quite sure why. With the garbled sound on the record, the listener could hear almost anything they wanted to.

The Governor of Indiana, Matthew Welsh, banned radio stations from playing the song in that state. On February 7, 1964, Attorney General Robert Kennedy got a letter from an outraged parent about the lyrics to “Louie Louie”. An F.B.I. investigation followed. After thirty months of investigation, the Bureau concluded that they could not make sense of the lyrics.

PG had a neighbor named Carol. A tomboy who could whip most of the boys, she had a pet skunk named Napoleon. Carol claimed to have heard a band at Lenox Square play “Louie Louie”. “He said the words real slow so you could understand them. I can’t repeat what he said, but it was dirty”.

Louie, Louie Oh no, me gotta go.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, said, ah
Louie, Louie Oh, baby, me gotta go
A fine little girl she waits for me Me
catch a ship for cross the sea.
Me sail that ship all alone Me never think how I make it home.
Ah, Louie, Louie No, no, no, no, me gotta go.
Oh, no. Said, Louie, Louie Oh, baby, said we gotta go.
Three nights and days I sail the sea Think of girl, oh, constantly.
Ah, on that ship I dream she there
I smell the rose, ah, in her hair.
Ah, Louie, Louie Oh, no, sayin’ we gotta go.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,
but, ah, Louie, Louie Oh, baby, said, we gotta go.
[Yelled] Okay, let’s give it to ‘em right now! [instrumental]
Me see Jamaica, ah, moon above.
It won’t be long, me see me love.
Take her in my arms again, I got her; I’ll never leave again.
Ah, Louie, Louie Oh, no, sayin’ me gotta go.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
But, ah, Louie, Louie Oh, baby, said, ah, we gotta go.
I said we gotta go now, Let’s get on outta here.
[Yelled] Let’s go.

Transcribed by David Spector Sept. 2000 Public Domain. If anyone reading this can explain what was so dirty about this song, please leave a comment. Thank you Wikipedia for your help in assembling this. This is a repost. Pictures by The Library of Congress










A Historical Perspective

Posted in Library of Congress, Weekly Notes by chamblee54 on January 25, 2021

The display of a link on this page does not indicate approval of content.
My Favorite Book (& What It Might Teach Aspiring Writers)
Dead of the Day 01/18/69 Playboy After Dark CBS Studios West Hollywood CA
Where surveillance cameras work but the justice system doesn’t
What Parler Saw During the Attack on the Capitol
A Gimp circle tutorial: How to draw a circle in Gimp
Talking with Glenn Loury about ‘Woke’ Culture and Racism Today
They Thought They Were Free The Germans, 1933-45
Law School N-Word Controversy Is More Complicated Than It Appears
Text messages exonerate Jessica Mulroney after she was cancelled last summer
Sample Snitching: How Online Fan Chatter Can Create Legal Trouble for Rap Producers
AITA for telling my roommate that she can’t clean her piercing with pasta water??
Some People Can Make a Roaring Sound in Their Ears Just by Tensing a Muscle
Memory-Hole Kamala Harris’ Bad Joke About Inmates Begging for Food and Water
Chuck Schumer says Senate Trump instigated an “erection”
Dead of the Day: January 22, 1968 Eagle’s Auditorium Seattle, Washington
Tales from the Backside: Poop Horror Stories
Worst Cooks in America winner and her husband arrested for ‘beating girl, 3, to death’
video forced Texas suburb to confront racism. A ‘silent majority’ fought back.
COVID-19’s Death Toll: A Historical Perspective
bee podcast ~ triolet ~ cancel culture ~ dogz ~ f1 – f12
handwriting ~ the shards ~ jacques futrelle ~ pj and thomas ~ hank aaron
repost ~ podcast ~ Battersea Poltergeist ~ grindr ~ spinal tap
From GENERALISSIMO BRYAN FRANCO to Everyone: 09:53 PM Awaken the Poet Within writing practice group meets from 11 AM to 1 PM Pacific time zone, every Saturday. Zoom link Nice to meet you this evening. Join Zoom Meeting ~ Four More Years – Presidential Inaugurations. I was listening to a podcast about the American withdrawal from Afghanistan. We brought war to that country in 2001. Our primary motivation was revenge for 911. We are still there 19 years later. I was working on a graphic project while I was listening. I got to a stopping point on the project, and walked away. I looked at a clock. It was 12:06 pm. The Presidential transition was consummated. This is the fifth Presidential inauguration for the war in Afghanistan. ~ Thank you for your story. There are many today who do not fit into any of the popular binaries. I am an individual, not liberal/conservative, democrat/republican, woke/racist, or any of the other pigeonholes. I feel Mr. Trump was a mistake, but fear that Mr. Biden will be only cosmetically better. ~ I was working on a project today, and listening to a podcast. The show was about the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, nearly twenty years after 911. I took a break, looked at a clock. It was 12:06 pm. The transition of Presidential power had happened. The troops are still killing people in Afghanistan, as though the Trump Presidency had never happened. ~ @chamblee54 .@GlennLoury .@JohnHMcWhorter @staceyabrams led a group to the state capitol to try to overturn election results @NikemaWilliams was arrested, and is now in Congress ~ Bret speaks of disdain for the assistant of Terry Schaeffer, in the episode about his lunch date. Now I see this: “I am Todd Michael Schultz aka Bret’s Assistant” ~ A writing workshop had us writing triolets: boo who out and about today, move along nothing here to see, la tarantula on the way, boo who out and about today, excuse me was all i could say, breathing hard and living to be free, boo who out and about today, move along nothing here to see ~ pictures today are from The Library of Congress. ~ selah

Struck Me Dead

Posted in Poem by chamblee54 on January 24, 2021

Conversations I Am Tired Of Having

Posted in Library of Congress, Race, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on January 23, 2021








There was a post a while back, 10 Conversations On Racism I’m Sick Of Having With White People The original started at The Chronicle, but LiveJournal is kind of weird, so a mirror image will have to do. There are comments, at the sourced post, that illustrate some of the points covered today.

I got to thinking about “10 Conversations”, and a reply began to take shape. I started a list of conversations the I am tired of having, and before you could say affirmative action, there were a dozen items. Many of these incidents have involved people of color, or POC. Many others have not. Often, the ethnicity of the other person has little importance to the discussion. Therefore, the title of this feature will not be racially specific. This monolog will probably not go viral, or even bacterial. Washing your hands might be a good idea when you are finished reading.

Meetings where one person does all the talking The word conversation implies that more than one person says something. Often, this does not happen. One person will talk for a while. Before person two finishes a sentence, person one will interrupt them.

This does not work. When the other person is talking, shut up and listen. Don’t be thinking of your clever comeback, but pay attention to what the other person is saying. What the other person says is just as important as what you say.

Listening is not valued in our culture. It is seen as a loss of control, a sign of weakness. It is really a sign of strength. If you are weak, you don’t want to allow the other person to say anything. Have you ever heard anyone boast about the clever things that they say to someone? Of course you have, just like you never hear anyone talk highly about himself because he is a good listener.

My question is not an excuse to make a speech. Some people have an agenda. Whatever you say is an obstacle to the message they want to broadcast. When you ask a question, some people think you are handing them the talking stick, to do whatever they want. When your eyes glaze over, they plow on, in total disregard to your discomfort, and lack of comprehension. It is almost as if they are talking to hear the sound of their own voice.

I’m not talking to you. If you are screaming something, anyone with earshot can hear you. Do not get offended if there is a reaction to your words, especially if it is subtly directed at the person you are not talking to. This applies to the internet as well, where all of humanity is *privy* to your innermost thoughts. Keep the farmyard meaning of *privy* in mind when sharing your innermost product.

Conversations should be with people. If you are a business, and you want to tell me something, send me a written message. Please refrain from using robocall machines. I feel very foolish talking to a machine, especially one that doesn’t understand southern english.

You don’t have to shout. The amount of truth in a statement is not increased by the volume of expression. If you are standing next to me, the odds are I can hear you in a normal tone of voice. If you are across the room, come stand next to me, rather than shout across the room. If your normal tone of voice is shouting, then you have a problem.

The same principle goes to controlling your temper. When you choose not to control your temper, you show disrespect to yourself, and the person you are talking to. There is no situation that cannot be made worse by angry speech.

Privilege Racial polemic is getting more subtle these days. We are not quite post racial, although there are rumors of a PostRacial apartment complex. The phrase that pays these days is Privilege. This is always something owned by the group you do not belong to. Last summer, I heard this quote in a discussion, and nearly fell out of my chair.

This is getting longer than the attention span of many readers. It might be continued at a later date. This is a repost. Pictures are from The Library of Congress.








Tallulah Bankhead And Billie Holiday

Posted in Georgia History, GSU photo archive, History, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on January 22, 2021






Tallulah Brockman Bankhead was born January 31, 1902 in Huntsville AL. She had a year-older sister, Eugenia. Their mother died February 23, 1902. Legend has it her last words were
“Take care of baby Eugenia. Tallulah can take care of herself.” This is a repost.
The father of the actress was Will Bankhead
. He was a prominent politician, who served as Speaker of the House of Representatives in Washington. Mr. Bankhead was on the short list of Vice Presidential candidates for Franklin Roosevelt, but was passed over. The Bankhead national forest, and the Bankhead Highway, are both named for Will Bankhead.
Tallulah Bankhead was an actress, radio show hostess, and personality. She went to London in the early twenties and became a stage sensation. Returning home, she became a Broadway star with “The Little Foxes.” She made movies, but saved her best public performances for the stage.

Miss Bankhead was known for being sexually active, with both men and women. Hattie McDaniel, who played Mammie in Gone With The Wind, was rumored to be one of her “friends”. Her introduction to Chico Marx went like this:
“Miss Bankhead.” “Mr. Marx.” “You know, I really want to fuck you.”. “And so you shall, you old-fashioned boy.”
One legend has Miss Bankhead at a dinner party with Dorothy Parker and Montgomery Clift. As might have been expected, the cocktail hour went on most of the evening. At one point, Mister Clift had his head in Miss Parker’s lap. “oh you sweet man, it’s too bad that you’re a cocksucker. He is a cocksucker, isn’t he?” Miss Bankhead replied “I don’t know, he never sucked my cock.”

Her most famous movie role was in “Lifeboat”, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Her co stars complained that she was not wearing panties under her dress. Mr. Hitchcock posed the question, is this a matter for wardrobe, or for hairdressing?

In the fading days of radio, Tallulah was the host of “The Big Show”. She became known for her deep voice, and for saying “Dah-ling”. More than one guest got big laughs by calling her Mister Bankhead. After “The Big Show” ended, Miss Bankhead remained active on stage and television. She died December 12, 1968.

Miss Bankhead was a staunch Democrat, as is fitting for the political family she was raised in. During the McCarthy era, an actress friend of hers was accused of being a communist. Miss Bankhead made a statement of support for the actress on the radio, and then asked her, are you a communist? The actress said that her daddy was a republican, and so she guessed that was what she was. Miss Bankhead was horrified.
“A republican! That’s worse than being a goddamn communist.”






One of Miss Bankhead’s more explosive friendships was with Billie Holliday. “The truth of the matter suggests they probably first met in the early 1930’s, well before Holiday ever became famous. What is known is that by 1948 they were bosom buddies. A year earlier, Holiday entered the Alderson Federal Reformatory for Women to serve her famous “one day and a year” sentence, after being found guilty on dope charges. Four months after her release in 1948, Holiday was appearing at New York’s Strand Theater with Count Basie on the first leg of a cross-country tour. At the same time, Tallulah Bankhead was nearby on Broadway starring in her hit play, Private Lives. Bankhead caused quite a commotion every night thundering late down the aisle during Billie’s show to sit in her special seat to stare in amazement at the gifted & stunningly beautiful Lady Day. Because Holiday’s license to perform in nightclubs had been revoked, and she was forced to earn her living in grueling tours on the road. For months after the Strand performance, Bankhead traveled with her whenever she could. Also on the tour was dancer/comedian James “Stump Daddy” Cross – nicknamed after his wooden leg, who joined the two famous ladies to make a treacherous threesome.”

“…it appears that during the late 1940s she and Holiday were also lovers. Perhaps they had been all along. Holiday later told William Dufty, who ghostwrote her autobiography, that when Tallulah visited backstage at the Strand Theatre, the thrill she took in exhibitionistic sex made her insist on keeping Holiday’s dressing room door open. Holiday later claimed that Tallulah’s brazen show of affection almost cost her her job at the Strand.”

Before long, Miss Holiday got busted again. Apparently, Miss Bankhead made a phone call to FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, asking for leniency. There is a remarkable thank you – you’re welcome correspondence between Miss Bankhead and Mr. Hoover. “As my Negro Mammy used to say ‘When you pray, you pray to God don’t you……I had only met Billie Holiday twice in my life….and feel the most profound compassion for her…she is essentially a child at heart whose troubles have made her psychologically unable to cope with the world in which she finds herself…poor thing, you know I did everything within the law to lighten her burden”. “A giddy and twitterpated Hoover wrote back , “Your comments are greatly appreciated, and I trust that you will no hesitate to call on me at any time you think I might be of assistance to you.”

At some point, the two became less intimate. Miss Bankhead had her own legal headaches, and put some distance between her and Miss Holiday. When “Lady Sings the Blues” was being prepared, Miss Bankhead got an advance copy, and was horrified by what she saw. A fierce note was sent to the book’s publisher, and scenes were edited out. Miss Holiday was outraged. The letter that resulted is a poison pen classic. “My maid who was with me at the Strand isn’t dead either. There are plenty of others around who remember how you carried on so you almost got me fired out of the place. And if you want to get shitty, we can make it a big shitty party. We can all get funky together!”

This is a repost. Pictures today are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”. “Members of the Atlanta Woman’s Club, during a luncheon for retiring president W.F. Milton, in the AWC banquet hall, in Atlanta, Georgia, March 5, 1937.” Picture of Billie Holiday from The Library of Congress.





Bloody Past

Posted in Poem by chamblee54 on January 21, 2021


Posted in History, Holidays, Library of Congress, Politics by chamblee54 on January 20, 2021

The happy historians at backstory have a timely feature, Four More Years – Presidential Inaugurations. There are a few stories.

George Washington was afraid of acting like a king. No one knew just how the office of President would turn out. Honest George stood on a New York balcony, took the oath, and gave a tasteful speech. The wooden teeth worked well.

Probably the most exciting inaugural was in 1876. The country had endured eight years of Ulysses Grant, and was ready to elect a Democrat. The Republicans were good at dirty tricks, and got Rutherford Hayes elected, despite losing the popular vote. The Democrat, Samuel Tilden, had a power base in New York, and was rumored to have an army. The possibility of an armed fight over the election was real. Cooler heads prevailed. Mr. Hayes was allowed to take his ZZ Top beard into the oval office. Four years later James Garfield was sworn in, not knowing what was in store.

In 1865, the country had endured four brutal years of internal war. Abraham Lincoln wanted to start the recovery process. His speech is regarded as the best inaugural speech ever.

Backstory makes a point that few have thought about. They said that Mr. Lincoln was a lousy public speaker. The reason his inaugural speech is famous today is because copies of the text were printed in newspapers. This makes sense, as less than an hundred people probably heard his unamplified, unrecorded, address. This would also account for the popularity of the Gettysburg Address.

Today, it is the medium, rather than the message. We are inundated with clever words, designed to uplift, improve, educate, and motivate. With everyone screaming, no one is heard. It is tough to imagine an inaugural today having the impact of the ones in history.

This repost feature was written like H. P. Lovecraft. The pictures are from The Library of Congress. The images are Union soldiers, from the War Between the States.