Monthly Archive for April, 2001

Page 2 of 14

lonesome, crowded west

I spent all day yesterday kanoodling with the Canadians, who were desperately whoring out their Adobe Acrobat products on LIVE! SATELLITE FEED! FROM TORONTO!

Isn’t technology grand when they can give us four hours of Canadians via satellite broadcasting?

I am in the process of making a London-Britishy themed mix for myself. Obviously, there will be some Clash, Charlatans UK, Northern Uproar, some Gomez, probably even some (gah) Oasis, maybe some Badly Drawn Boy (not London, I know) or some “Low-Fi-post-punk-scene” stuff. (I love it when people talk like this. Like Al was saying about the “record store snobs.” You know these people- the people who combine all music genres with a lot of hyphens, and act like it means something? what is that anyway? Royal Trux?) Anyone with suggestions, email me, yo.

Other Stuff:

Not too long ago, someone I went to college with died. I never really found out the details, mostly because I didn’t know him very well. He was one of those people you saw out at bars, and was friends of friends of yours. Seemed nice enough. I don’t think I ever said a single word to him in four years, but he was a name I knew; a name that was passed around pretty frequently. I’m sure he was well off, drove a nice car and if I recall correctly, wore nice things and came from an upstanding New England family.

It’s very, very bizarre to me when someone of my young age dies. I try not to be one that preaches. I don’t care if you get all strung out and high and run a dominatrix service out of your mom’s basement. (Actually, that sounds like such a great moneymaking venture to me. Forget I mentioned it, I may use that idea myself.) I have some pretty liberal views concerning people’s vices, and hell if I’m going to tell anyone seriously how they should run their life. I talk a big game, I joke about things too much and inappropriately, but for the most part, I don’t care I mostly don’t give a shit what other people do as long as it doesn’t fuck up my life. (Yes, that is extremely selfish and self-centered, but I’m in my twenties. Aren’t I supposed to be like this? I’m just trying to play the correct role here.) Anyway, it’s still bizarre.

That guy had a massive drug problem. Or so the rumor mill had it. I would say that it’s a 90% chance that’s why/how he went to the Big Bar in the Sky. I don’t know why I had been thinking about him today, but I had.

And to attempt to poignantly quote one of my favorite movies, “Now that’s a real shame when folks be throwin’ away a perfectly good white boy like that.”

Just say no. I wish my friends could still run into their friend at a bar.

PS Props to Jessica for being daring and all smarty

more abortions = less crime?!?

Was lounging in the bathtub last night reading the newest issue of Newsweek (April 30, 2001) and came across a piece that really got me thinking. Something I haven’t done in a while. Damn! It felt good…

So this piece was a rebuttle to an article that two law professors (John Donohue, Stanford; Steven Levitt, U of Chicago) had written in Harvard’s Quarterly Journal of Economics. In it, they supported and tried to prove that since the legalization of abortions started in the 1970’s, crime rates have dramatically fallen. They think there’s some sort of correlation here?!?

Roe v. Wade lead the way to legalized abortions. Since then, there have been over 27 million abortions performed in the last 18 years. Donohue and Levitt believe that “legalized abortion appears to acount for as much as 50 percent of the recent drop in crime.” Excuse me?

Homocide has gone down 40 percent. Violent Crime is down 30 percent. States with high abortion rates have had greater reductions in their crime rates. How?

“6 percent of any birth cohort commits about half of that cohort’s crimes.” Father is criminal. Father’s son commits about half of his father’s crimes. Legalized abortion ceases this crime chain by allowing the father not to have his child.

Donohue and Levitt believe that abortions and crime rates correlate between similiar social classes and living environments.
Donohue and Levitt could be viewed as racists. “Given that homocide rates of black youths are roughly nine times higher than those of white youths, racial differences in the fertility effects of abortion are likely to translate into greater homocide reductions.” Why? Because there will be fewer black youths since the legalization of abortions? Or because it will take the white youths nine times longer to catch up?

I wouldn’t have a problem with these two men, had they simply stated that since the legalization of abortions in the 1970’s, a small percentage of the drop in crime rates can be attributed. I would understand a drop in the smaller, petty crimes; such as theft, breaking and entering. But homocide, rape, and other vicious violent crimes? I find it hard to find that these two subjects have much, if anything to do with each other.

Oddly enough, Donohue and Levitt are not advocating abortion. They simply believe they have found an explanation to the rise in unwanted pregnancies/abortion and a drop in crime.

Who’s to say that we, the “legalized abortion generation” aren’t incubators of a crime rate yet to rise?

looking back in anger

Musical Fidelidy's A3So today it came. I have have been waiting for almost 3 months now. I have researched and read reviews and user comments. I have talked to people in to the so called “hi-end” and made sense of it all. I am finally in the game of a hi end integrated amplifier. I went with the Musical Fidelity A3. This lil’ puppy gives me well over 100 watts @ 6 Ohms of pure British (known for it’s tube-like sound) power. There are no tone controls or balance knobs (left/right) which means a shorter, cleaner and more precise channel path. I have set up my EQ/Spectrum Analyser to this puppy, but keep it out of the sound loop as I really don’t even need to tweek the sound. I am not even using my tube pre’s for my CD player as the sound is already so incredibly warm and moist. I have never had bass so smooth and mids so warm and high’s so crisp. I have entered a new realm of audio. I will now have to listen to all my records over again, almost for the first time. The first actual obvious change was more evident with the phonograph (record) amp. The vinyl I played with this amp was incredibly more clear, vivid, loud and separated. I couldn’t believe the change. The CD was definately more defined but not as drastic as with the phono amp.

The first CD to be played with this integrated amp was The Flaming Lips’ transmissions from the sattelite heart. I have always loved the incredibly wonderous and large drums on this CD. What a better way to highlight them than on a wonderous integrated amp. Next, since one of my favorite producers/engineers is Brian Eno, I put on some David Bowie. And then some James from a record called “Wah Wah” which was Eno’s version of Laid. Again it was downright spooky with how much more clear the sound was. The bass was more flowing and even and almost separated from the mix. It wasn’t mush and bloated like it was with my old amp. I am just in awe. And to think that what I have is considered “Mid-Line.”

In other news the Pollen Count in DC was at it’s highest peak in 10 years yesterday. Funny thing is, is that my allergies didn’t start bothering me until after lunch today. It got progressively bad. I finally succumbed to the meds and took some tylonol cold/allergy pills just as I was starting to write this. I can already feel the effects of it. I am begging to feel the way I used to when I smoked pot on a regular basis. The cloud is getting thicker. It’s a cloud I almost miss. But then I ground myself and know I am better off. I am not one to advocate anything, and I am not all about straight-edge. But, drugs are bad. Period. And I don’t recommend them at all, personally. But hey, you gotta live some and try some. Sure they were great. But they made me one lazy and unproductive person. I do presume it’s different with different people. A lot of musicians made wonderful music and a lot of artists made wonderful art on massive amounts of drugs. Go figure.