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So what really DID happen to the “Occupy Wall-Street Movement”? Where are the folks who wanted to have a visible movement and make global changes?
I suspect that VERY few of the OWS folks were really interested in it  from the beginning. The rest were poseurs and folks having their  15 minutes of fame.
I consider an argument with my friend Gary about the subject officially WON! LOL, He’s going to hate this. 🙂
From: Joe harden <djtrustfund@yahoo.com>
To: Gary Shiffrar <gary[cencored]com>
Sent: Saturday, June 30, 2012 2:00 AM

But in early 2013 it looks like it's "back to bed" after rebellion summer camp was over.

But in early 2013 it looks like it’s “back to bed” after rebellion summer camp was over.

Ironically these "ironic" signs would be the most honest representation of this movement...pretty ironic, right?

Ironically these “ironic” signs would be the most honest representation of this movement…pretty ironic, right?


Subject: Mr Harden goes to Washington…I mean bed. lol 🙂

Not exactly. Why would I consider someone who has spent their life in public service a “clueless college sophomore”, Gary? Just because I called some of those poseur kids out, doesn’t mean that I don’t respect people truly making a difference and actually caring about these things. I hate it when activism and awareness “tourist” come through and feel like they are the only ones doing anything to affect change (by setting up shanty towns somewhere and looking “rebellious chic” for the camera). Most people who affect any real change, do it on a daily basis, and they quietly educate themselves and others in everyday life. Others teach large masses in the universities and social activities groups (outside of the “campus square” or a field-trip to NY (and shittier versions) to “occupy”…instead of Holland this year). There are many ways to do this. I don’t like the idea of some privileged snot looking down on “every day people” who don’t fit into their narrow definitions of rebellious and conscious…smugly sitting back and judging. 
 
It bothers me because some people (like myself) have pursed this type of knowledge before my grades counted on it and when no one was/is filming me (and when most friends didn’t discuss it with me i might add. Not many kids were talking about this stuff in America when No Logo hit the shelves in 1999-2000). OWS kids…I dunno, they bother me a little. Mostly when people act like they are the only  “inspiring youth who can really make a change”. Give me the kids in Egypt dammit!!! lol
 
We all take our beatings in one way or another. I don’t think that this years or last years designer rebellion is worth a damn if it isn’t something LIVED out every day after that. So I respect your congressman (which is like always the first hipster question (along with “what is your major?”) lol. “Do you know who your congressman is?”. I always want to ask in response “do you know why you asked me that?”. Smug self-satisfaction and haughty condescension  is my guess.  It’s the type of question that’s meant to “educate the ignorant person” in front of them. I would rather those types think of me as ignorant, than  to engage in a “loaded conversation” with them. 
 
“Freedom fighter or house negro”? My thoughts on the matter aren’t that simple. I’m simply not falling for A LOT the OWS kids fake attempt to co-opt rebellion and awareness. In any movement, there are fillers and there are the truly motivated. No disrespect to the “fillers”, their sheer numbers serve a purpose of sorts. We all have to pay the rent. But , I also think that those hipsters in glass houses should not throw stones (or judge and condescend to people). fillers. 
 
Again, I would never call someone who devotes himself to serving the public a “clueless college sophomore”…I am not even sure how that can be assumed from what I wrote earlier. That distinction is reserved for the poseur kids who will no doubt use the OWS participation/fad as  a means to get inside some Women’s Studies chicks. To cozy up to the girls  who don’t shave their armpits for one summer (before they cut it…along with all ties to “rebellion”). 
 
Gary, I know that you have seen a very limited side  of me in the past and over the years…but it doesn’t mean that’s “all there is” to me. My “wild going out days”  (which weren’t even extreme, really) started as a way to bust out of my self-conscience and (a little too) introverted ways.  I never made those types of assumptions about you. As a matter of fact, I told my friend Macario (and one of  my cousins) how you told me about train-tracks being used in city planning to segregate (I remember you telling me that YEARS ago). Information being passed even without O-ing WS and wanting a t.v. crew to film me. Everyday life. Grand gestures and visible battle scars tell a compelling story but real people LIVE them. 

Here we are less than a year later and where is the burgeoning  movement now? This is not so much  an insult, as it is  (hopefully) motivation for the types who really cared in the first place. PLEASE, PROVE ME (and folks who think you are simply “rebellion TOURISTS” WRONG. 

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Sports roundup!

Posted: 2013/02/08 in Uncategorized

Quick Weekly Sports Round-up

Well well well,  

Last week’s Superbowl festivities were an amazing spectacle…and then there was the actual game itself. Between the pregame shows, post-game shows, 4 million dollar television ads and high-octane Beyonce Knowles halftime performance (not to mention the subtle product placement and not-so-subtle flag-waiving), the game was decidedly low-key when compared all that goes on around it.

Anything would be considered “low-key” when compared to the pomp and circumstance surrounding a typical Superbowl game.

When it comes to the actual game, “all we were given” was an exciting “barnburner” that saw an amazing comeback attempt by the San Francisco 49ers. Down to the Baltimore Ravens by a score of 21-6 (and victims of Joe Flacco’s 13-yard touchdown pass to receiver Anquan  Boldin) by halftime, the 49ers stormed back to make a game of it, closing in with a score of 28-23 (on an Akers field goal from 34 yards). The 49ers had four chances to take the lead in the game, but it was not happening in New Orleans that night. “The Cain and Able Bowl” (the first Superbowl match to feature two brothers coaching against each other) ended with  the Baltimore Ravens taking home the trophy (behind game MVP Joe Flaco and Coach John Harbaugh who was able to outduel his brother Jim) in a 34-31 win.

Let’s hope that they “take it down a notch”  next year with all of the pomp surrounding the game. It was very tough to actually focus on the game with all of the things going on around it, not to mention the 35 minute delay after halftime (which I suspect  was a result of the multimedia extravaganza Beyonce and the NFL put on during halftime), Let’s hope  the actual chase for a championship takes center-stage and all of the fun distractions take a year (or several) off!

Meanwhile in the NBA…

As the National Basketball Association gears up for it’s annual All-Star game (on Sunday, February 17 2013) , the Los Angles Laker team’s two biggest stars (and two-fifths of the 2013 Western All-Star starters) are in a serious head-to-head match-up of their own. What seemed like a “can’t miss” assemblage of talent on the Lakers’ team this year (after adding future Hall-of- Fame point guard Steve Nash and Superstar center Dwight Howard; to a mix of Kobe Bryant, Paul Gasol and the rest of the Laker stars this year) has been a “can’t win” disaster fraught with injuries and bitterness. Now, Kobe has (predictably) gotten frustrated with Howard’s lack of a “killer instinct” and has started riding Dwight like he used to ride championship celebration floats in L.A. .  Kobe Bryant has openly questioned the severity of Dwight’s shoulder injury and his commitment to the team’s goal of  self-sacrifice (to win games).

“Ouch!”

Time will tell if the Lakers can pull this thing together before the playoffs and end the year on a more “upbeat” note…it is highly doubtful (if not impossible) though…

like a Manti Te’o  wedding day.

——–Joseph Harden

Apparently, innovative electronic music producer/Dj/musician was kicked off of the stage recently in Miami.

Yeah, I could see this happening to him…

He forgot that he was performing in a club (apparently) and played a smart/heady mix of underground and mainstream sounds together, in his usual imaginative way. By the time the dub-step influenced stuff mixed with Rakim comes into the mix (followed by what sounds like a short clip of mutated Bollywood) you remember that this guy is GENIUS. And don’t get me started on the Bone Thugs/Fleetwood Mac Mash-up! Of course he got kick off of the stage.

They don’t like that stuff in the clubs anymore. Unfortunately electronic music festivals are the only places to hear this sort of AMAZING and groundbreaking stuff ( music that has a foot in the mainstream and the other in the cutting edge). Watch! A smart rapper will  get together with Shadow and create the most critically acclaimed album of that year.

Listen here:

http://pitchfork.com/news/49027-listen-dj-shadow-shares-the-too-future-mix-that-got-him-kicked-offstage-in-florida/

Shadow!!!!

Shadow!!!!

Well…Well…Well.

M(ha!)TV’s annual VMA awards show is finally upon us this year and I can BARELY contain my excitement…

Yeah…my “excitement”.

This year’s line-up has SOME star-power but what does it all mean ? I mean : Green Day, Alicia Keys and  Pink. They are all great and all…but where are the current crop of Pop’s “Tops”? Plus, if you are going to pull some of the “new old-guard” out for this type of thing…can’t you do better MTV? Sorry, It had to be said. These artist are all very good but they are kinda irrelevant nowadays.

Yeah, I said it.

Maybe their new albums (the real reason they are even going to be performing in the first place) will justify this line-up? Maybe not.

Either way, It leads me to the same spot/thought that I find myself in every year the VMAs roll around : do I watch it and be disappointed again ? Or do I watch it and be bored (but expected to be bored in the first place)?

Decisions…Decisions.

It is no secret that the VMAs  have been regularly crappy (on and off)  for nearly the last 10 years . The last really good VMAs that I can remember was the 2006 VMAs . The one where Britney Spears choked and nearly ruined her career and Rihanna took the “Pop Princess” crown away from her. Britney has since bounced back in a VERY big way (even though some damage was done) but the VMAs themselves have been in a rut. Besides some great individual  moments scattered over the last few years (Lady Gaga’s superstar-making performance is the most obvious…along with Pink’s high-wire act when she was a little more “relevant”) the VMAs have been a SNOOZE-fest.

Am I getting too old? Is this why the VMAs don’t have the same magic anymore. I would like to think that this is not the case. I still LOVE and OBSESS over music (always will) so I seriously doubt that my passion for the IDEA of the VMAs is the cause of my lackluster reaction to the yearly event. I think the real culprit is MTV’s general lack of interest in music nowadays (and they focus on reality television which is SOOOOO profitable now). MTV isn’t invested in music anymore and it shows.

Where is Nicky Minaj? Lady Gaga? Adel? M.I.A (who is LONG overdue to be given her chance to ROCK the VMA stage)? Hell even Madonna and Kylie Minogue are more relevant that Pink and Keys (no disrespect to either one)…Where are the cool new rockers ? I know and listen to them .

Bring in some Brits dammit.

I know that I am going to watch the show tonight. Call me a hopeless devotee to the idea that music and MTV still matter.

I might be wrong .

It is proper that the torch of the Bartholdi statue should not be lighted until this country becomes a free one in reality. ‘Liberty enlightening the world,’ indeed! The expression makes us sick. This government is a howling farce. It cannot or rather does not protect its citizens within its own borders. Shove the Bartholdi statue, torch and all, into the ocean until the ‘liberty’ of this country is such as to make it possible for an industrious and inoffensive colored man in the South to earn a respectable living for himself and family, without being ku-kluxed perhaps murdered, his daughter and wife outraged, and his property destroyed. The idea of the ‘liberty’ of this country ‘enlightening the world,’ or even Patagonia, is ridiculous in the extreme.”

This scathing (and accurate) message was printed in the Cleveland Gazette in 1886 (an African American newspaper). It was written shortly after the dedication ceremony  for the Statue of Liberty and a little over 100 years after America became an independent nation. It was also around nineteen years after slavery  was abolished in America . 

The irony of recent slave owners and current oppressors congratulating themselves, with a gift celebrating the “freedom” of their land, was not lost on the contributors to the Cleveland Gazette.

Not only does this serve as a document of the continued struggles of the downtrodden Peoples of America, It also shows the truly AMERICAN desire for America to become a more inclusive and “free” nation in reality (as well as “on paper”). It’s a characteristic that we (as Americans…all of us) should remember AND be very proud of.

Even if all of us don’t have ALL of our freedoms at this time, remember to keep fighting and keep speaking out…It is in our country’s DNA. Even when the “powers that have become”, forgets it!

Happy 4th of July, people :)!!!!!!!!!

Out Paced.

Posted: 2012/05/17 in Basketball, NBA, Uncategorized

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Now let’s never

speak of the game 3 Heat loss again! lol!

I am going to continue to back them but dammit if they don’t need some help. The  loss tonight was effing ridiculous. Indiana are no slobs . They (Indiana) do have some vets with playoff experience…and while Indiana is very underrated,  still, the Heat had no business losing this game or losing so badly. period.

My “favorite” part was when Dwyane Wade decided to fight his (lousy) coach instead of the Indiana Pacers. Scratch that…My actual  favorite part was watching newly crowned MVP of the league Lebron James brick jumper after jumper in the second half…trying to either get back into the game in a shallow way (instead of going to the basket and shooting your free-throws AND getting  the other team in foul trouble…oh and STOPPING THE CLOCK!) or shoot the team out of the game completely (so he could sit his ass down for the night). I’m not sure which one of those outcomes he really hoped for and that’s sad. Either way, the Miami Heat played poorly (to say the least) and they had better decide to bring the same passion and fighting spirit (against the Pacers) that they brought against Eric Spoelstra. They Had better do that or it will be a LONG game 4 in Indiana (if they are lucky) and they will lose.

But most of all they better come to play in game 4 because I never want to have to DEFEND ERIC SPOELSTRA *shudder* AGAIN!!

At least my favorite team in the West playoff picture is still doing well. GO OKC!

Let’s hope the Heat can get it together for that OKC vs. Heat Matchup I’ve been hoping for…That is , if the Celts and Spurs don’t have something to say about all of that .

I’ve heard verses from Peril P since he was a VERY young kid and it is a definite pleasure to see his progression into a very LEGIT rhyme-slinger and upcoming artist. The Florida-born Rapper (Orlando) has certainly been doing some serious growing and could easily break nationally with the right team…

He has always had raw talent (even at the pre-teen level) . Now he has definitely pulled it all together and matured into a full-fledged artist.

Recently on Soundcloud (an online Social/Artist’s network community ) I listened to a snippet of one of Peril P’s songs titled “I ain’t got the time” and a full-length song titled “Yeen know”.  Both of these songs flow with a down-south swagger and self-confidence that leaves most also-rans in the dust. Peril is on full-display here with clever punchlines and twisty metaphors that shows true promise on a larger scale (think early Lil-Wayne meets a bit of Big Boi from Outkast meets…Peril P). The backing tracks are solid (if standard) down south boom-bap…but with his clever rhymes and abundance of confidence, I personally feel that Peril can branch-out from this and tackle different topics and sounds. All in all, a good introduction to a very solid talent. I am absolutely sure this won’t be the last piece I write on this guy…

[Catch Peril P performing in Orlando, Florida  (@ the Central Florida Fairgrounds) at the 7th Annual Zoe Flag Day Bash on 5/19/2012]

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