Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Judy Piazza Workshop

I am so happy to be able to attend a Judy Piazza frame drum workshop at Capital University October 10th. Presale tickets are on sale now. If you are in the Columbus area please contact me for details.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Giant Eagle Mural Of Mirror Lake

You just never know where a mural might appear here in Columbus Ohio. This one is at The Giant Eagle on High Street a few blocks from where I live. The mural is well done and of Mirror Lake (man made lake) on The Ohio State University Campus.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Threat Of Blogs

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Apparently Blogs are a threat to the newspaper industry. I for one believe blogs keep media more honest than they would be otherwise. Here is the story.

Obama yesterday expressed concern at the sorry state of the news industry and said that he will look at a news paper bailout, because otherwise, blogs will take over the world, and that would be a threat to democracy, The Hill reports.

"I am concerned that if the direction of the news is all blogosphere, all opinions, with no serious fact-checking, no serious attempts to put stories in context, that what you will end up getting is people shouting at each other across the void but not a lot of mutual understanding," he said.

He said he would be happy to look a bills that could give tax newspapers tax-breaks if they were to restructure as 50 (c) (3) educational corporations. One of the bills is that of Senator Ben Cardin, who has introduced the "Newspaper Revitalization Act."

This strikes us as the worst kind of protect the horse and buggy policy imaginable. Newspapers have been printing money for 100+ years, and if the market is now putting an end to that, stifling this change probably isn't a good idea. Back in May we came up with 10 one-line reasons this kind of bailout is a terrible idea. Briefly, they were:

  • It's bad to reward outdated businesses based on outdated tech.
  • Newspapers delivery trucks don't run on water.
  • Traditionally bloated monopolies, newspapers don't know how to innovate.
  • Just because newspapers go away doesn't mean sources will.
  • Newspapers employ just 0.2 percent of the nation’s labor force.
  • 66% of people get their news from TV.
  • Newspaper owners think Google is a parasite.
  • Ask people when they last bought a paper, much less subscribed.
  • A government subsidized "free press" isn't a "free press" at all.
  • As newspapers go away, a shrinking supply of ad inventory will drive up ad prices, rewarding innovative new media.


Saturday, September 26, 2009

Paint Job Finished

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My little paint job was finished yesterday. I can't wait to see Bonie's finished ceiling!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Pointer Brand Work Clothes

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I am always searching for good quality items that are still made in the USA. This company makes quality work clothes.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Glen Beck Attacks Story Of Stuff

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I am a fan of Annie Leonard's 20 minute short film The Story Of Stuff. This morning I got an email from Annie that Mr. Beck weighed in on the film. What an ass. They would rather our youth become mindless consumers than to think for themselves.

On his radio and television programs today, Glenn Beck offered up a “critique” of The Story of Stuff—a 20-minute web-film that examines the underside of America’s production and consumption patterns. In Beck’s world, an honest exploration of the environmental and social challenges our children are inheriting is worthy of scorn and ridicule, not honest engagement.

In May 2009, the New York Times called The Story of Stuff “a sleeper hit in classrooms across the country.” We’re honored that teachers from middle school through university are using our film to spark debate and engage students in critical thinking.

While it may be hard for climate change deniers like Beck and his friends at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and Evergreen Freedom Foundation to swallow, there is a real hunger in this country for a straightforward, honest discussion of our environmental future. Teachers have told us that The Story of Stuff has been a valuable supplement to textbooks that give short shrift to issues like climate change by creating spirited debate and inspiring students to look deeper into what are truly some of the greatest challenges of the 21st century.

Beck didn’t have the courtesy to contact The Story of Stuff Project for comment or offer a spot on his show to rebut the claims of his guests. While playing fast and loose with the facts is nothing new for Beck, we stand behind our presentation.

Viewers are welcome to visit to watch the film and, as Fox News would put it, decide for themselves. While on the site, visitors can check out the annotated script, which provides references for all the facts used in the film. For those who would like to use The Story of Stuff to stimulate discussions in classrooms, living rooms, community meetings or other venues, there are a number of resources, including sample discussion questions and group exercise ideas, in the resources section of the Story of Stuff webpage.

Potatoes In A Bag Image 4

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After all dirt is sifted and potatoes gathered one bag yields about 4 pounds!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Potatoes In A Bag Image One

On St. Patrick's Day I did a blog about Taters In A Bucket. We ended up planting them in a bag instead. Last night after we toured Milo Art Studios, we came home and tipped the bag over.
It was my intention to show a sequence of photos here leading up to the final photo of how many potatoes grew in this bag. But the blogger system will not let me upload. So tune in tomorrow for Potatoes In A Bag Image Two!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Studio Space

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I am looking at some studio space today at Milo here in Columbus Ohio. Milo was an old school converted into artist's lofts. For years I have been curious about this old building. It has a Harry Potter Hogwarts feeling about it.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Painting Job Today

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I am happy to be working on a painting job this week and will continue my blog in a few days.

The Beautiful Side Of Evil

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My minor in college was photography. I am in awe of some of the modern day photographers that can convey to us "the beautiful side of evil" and find inspiration in urban decay. It contrasts with the slick advertising tricks we were all trying to achieve in college.

This photographer has a gift for making stunning photographs of over-industrialization.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

RIP Mary Travers

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"Well I think I'll try the circus
Or go back to Mexico
It's time to make mistakes again

It's time to change the show

It's time and time and time again

To find another way

It's time to gather forces
And get out of yesterday"

Elephant In The Room

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Tea Party Protest March On Washington Last Weekend

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Last weekend while I was partying at Hot Times Festival, the religious wrong was busy stirring up descent. They don't seem to realize that the collapse of our economy happened under the direction of G. W. Bush and Henry Paulson. Maybe they think they can shift the blame to the Obama camp by protesting now. God love em at least they are finally awake and restless!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Public Art?

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The other day when I was returning home from the reTagit store I saw some new art in my neighborhood. This is some well thought out protest to the present situation on home foreclosures. Even though everything is alright now and the big bad recession is supposedly over (media spin), there is art that is telling a different story (underground spin).

Monday, September 14, 2009

In The Land Of Queen Ester

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Scary stuff!
This is from Sarah Palin's Church footage shot by author Max Blumenthal who has written a book called Republican Gamorah

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Hot Times Day Three

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I hope to see you all at Hot Times tonight for MDOFE Columbus Women's Drum Chorus. Check us out!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Hot Times Day Two

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We had a nice turnout for opening drum circle at Hot Times Festival last night. I hope to go back today and get rested up for a day of drumming on Sunday. Come out and join in the fun.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Hot Times Drum Circle Tonight!

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Come join me in the opening drum circle at Hot Times Festival tonight at 6pm. Bring your drum, tambourine and your bad ole self!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

What It Will Be Like

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There is some discussion and debate about what our roadways are gonna look like post collapse over at LATOC. Some folks believe in a fast collapse, and some a slow collapse. Here is a photo of part of the old Pennsylvania Turnpike as it slowly goes back to what it was. One thing for certain over at LATOC is that collapse is inevitable. Our present society based on cheap oil is passing away right before our eyes!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What Next From Wall Street?

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Just when you think that they might be done with all bundling up of things. They begin to contemplate bundling Life Insurance policies!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Zanes Landing

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I spent yesterday on the Muskingham River at Zanes Landing Zanesville Ohio. I was there for The Ohio Living Green Fayre. Nice little festival. Great day.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Ohio Green Living Fayre

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I will be performing at 4pm Labor Day at Zanes Landing downtown Zanesville for the Ohio Living Green Fayre. I will be hoping to stop by Tom's Ice Cream Bowl on the way home!

It just doesn't get any better than this!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Where Is Bobbie Gentry?

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Early this morning (Thursday Sept. 3rd), I heard this tune on WCBE by Jill Sobule from her new CD called Where Is Bobbie Gentry. Bobbie Gentry is living somewhere in seclusion. We miss her and her mysterious songs. She also did Fancy and played with Glen Campbell and Johnny Cash. I am glad to hear a song that resolves the mystery of Ode to Billy Joe. Keep on cranking em out Jill Sobule...maybe Bobbie will get a hold of you soon for a duet! Here is the lyrics to Jill's new song Where Is Bobby Gentry?

Out in the desert where the sun slowly cures deep brown
She's got a little shack, a pickup truck
Parked out on the edge of town
It's just what I imagined, no one knows where she'd be
Maybe she's in heaven passing black-eyed peas

Where is Bobbie Gentry?
Where is Bobbie Gentry?

Up in Alaska, Hollywood, or maybe in Japan
I bet that she's still beautiful, goes barefoot everywhere she can
Does she still play guitar or write a song or two?
Maybe that was over; she's got better things to do

Where is Bobbie Gentry?
Where is Bobbie Gentry?

If I could just find you
I would love you, then I'd leave you alone
If I could just find you
I would love you and I'd leave you alone

In 1967, Bobbie made it on the Billboard charts
Then ten years later, disappeared and broke everybody's heart
Does she ever go to Choctaw?
Ever go back on that ridge?
Well, I was the baby who was thrown off the Tallahatchie Bridge
Well, I was the baby who was thrown off the Tallahatchie Bridge (Where is Bobbie Gentry?)

Where is Bobbie Gentry?

B-O-double B-I-E G-E-N-T-R-Y
B-O-double B-I-E G-E-N-T-R-Y

Where is Bobbie Gentry?
Where is Bobbie Gentry?
Where is Bobbie Gentry?
Here it comes
Where is Bobbie Gentry?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Welcome Back To Norka Lydia Brownfield

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Lydia Brownfield is playing at Norka Futon for Gallery Hop early Saturday night. Later that evening you can see her at The Thirsty Ear.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Black Money

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Here is the latest about all the patriotic souls that have stashed their money in Swiss bank accounts!

The case against UBS is over. The Justice Department appears to have won this one. A total of 4,450 out of a total of 52,000 names will be divulged to either DOJ or IRS. Based on what has been presented it would appear that the other 48,000 names that were not disclosed either had the money sent back to a bank in the Sates (equivalent of full disclosure) or they had hired a lawyer and confessed their sins to the IRS.

According to the DOJ the 52,000 names had a total of $15 billion in their black accounts. A sizable amount of money. The question that has been hanging in the air is how much money is still in Swiss black accounts that has not been flushed out at this point? How many other Americans have accounts that were not with UBS? How many accounts are there from non-US names? What is an estimate as to the size of this problem?

The August edition of Swiss Review provides some insight. While Swiss Review is not the end all source of information on this topic their writing is not independent of the Swiss Government who provides a portion of the operating budget. With that in mind I was shocked to find the following in the August edition of SR:

“Switzerland has become a paradise for foreign capital on which tax is not paid. The uproar from foreign governments is understandable.” These are not the words of a critic of the banks, but of private banker Konrad Hummler. He says that around 30%, or CHF 1,000 billion, of the CHF 2,800 billion or so of foreign assets in Swiss banks is untaxed “black money”.

Mr. Hummler probably knows as much about the topic of black accounts in Switzerland as anyone. His Bio:

Konrad Hummler is managing partner of Wegelin & Co., private bankers, and has acted for many years as personal advisor to the chairman of the board of directors of the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS). He serves as a colonel in the general staff of the Swiss Army.

Mr. Hummler has put a number of nearly 1 Trillion dollars on the problem. This is much higher than any estimate that I have seen before. I thought it could be as high as $500b. It appears that I was understating things by a factor of 2. Some perspective based on the comments by Mr. Hummler:

-The $15 billion owned by the 52,000 American names represents 1.5% of the total.

-The average US account balance at UBS was $300,000. ($15b/52k). Extrapolating from that number one gets an estimate on the total number of black accounts at 3.3 million. Based on this calculation a range of estimates on the total number would be between 2 and 4 million.

Mr. Hummler’s comments are unlikely to go unnoticed by the global taxing authorities. The idea that there is this much money waiting to be claimed by the host countries makes it certain that the attacks against Swiss banks will continue far into the future. Everyone will want their share of $1 Trillion.

I believe that the trees are shaking and the leaves falling on this issue as I write. I recently reviewed a letter from a large Swiss private bank (not Wegelin & Co) that was sent to a US client it reads, in part, as follows:

“To ensure transparency toward the IRS, we would ask you to sign the enclosed form W-9 and return it to us by 30 September 2009. We will then forward form W-9 to our US depository, which will in turn disclose your holdings to the IRS.”

While this letter may not represent the thinking and action of other Swiss banks it is likely that they will be forced to follow suit in the not too distant future. Mr. Rolf Ribi the author of the story in Swiss Review states in his lead in: Banking confidentiality is facing, “the beginning of the end”. I would disagree with Mr. Ribi. We are far from the beginning of this process. The end will come much sooner than is expected. Black accounts in Switzerland are a thing of the past.

A Hat Tip to Mr. Hummler for providing this insight.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Two Walmart Products Recalled

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Just what we all need. A DVD player that catches on fire and an office chair that collapses. Both products made in China and both products sold at Walmart! To get on the US Consumer Safty Commission's email recall alerts go to

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Sweet Medicine Drums

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I am so happy that my frame drum has been repaired. I bought my frame drum in 95 and it developed cracks on the side that threatened to come to the front of my drum so I retired it. Occasionally I googled "All In One Tribe" Drum but came up with dead end leads. Last month though my efforts hit pay dirt and I found a website that features the frame drums and contacted them which lead to the repair of my beloved drum. You can see these drums by clicking on this link.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Uncle Sam Is My Friend

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These days a loan from a bank seems pretty unrealistic. I have always had real good luck and experience with Uncle Sams Pawn Shop downtown Columbus Ohio.
As commercial real estate collapses in the next few months there will be lots of folks down and out. Don't suffer and go witout your basic needs. Don't turn to the tight wad bankers. Don't turn to the loan sharks. Your Uncle Sam is there for you. Every town must have an Uncle Sam or a pawn shop. No Worries!