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[ Comments Off ]Posted on October 13, 2011 by admin in Lifestyle & CultureThursday, October 13th, 2011
As soon as Occupy Wall St starts using professionally printed signs and posters we can assume the movement has been hijacked, but could we at least lose the “20th century Soviet” and “60′s Power Fist” motifs?
I’ve personally begun A-B
testing for the revolution.
If you’ve visited DissociatedPress.com with any regularity over the last few years, you know that I’ve been a bit annoyed with Wall Street since 2008 , when the industry built on gambling your hard earned dollars on sophisticated ponzy schemes to line billionaire bankers’ pockets with bonuses came tumbling down like a lost weekend in Vegas. Except when the hustlers lost their wad and woke up with a brain splitting hangover, they somehow managed to convince everyone to float them JUST ONE MORE TIME, swearing they’d mend their evil ways. Well, like any addict struggling with an addiction, they lied of course, slipped themselves a bunch more bonuses and wild parties just months later, and in the big picture, pretty much broke capitalism in the process. So it was with some excitement that I started watching the Occupy Wall St movement begin to gather steam last month; I even set up a site at OccupyAnnArbor.org, figuring if the movement didn’t arrive in my town on its own, I would HELP it arrive. No worries there though, within a few days of creating the site, about 1200 people had gathered spontaneously on one of the many Facebook groups that had suddenly popped up. Which is what I think the power of this movement is; it is genuinely grass roots and citizen-driven. People make fun of the cardboard signs being used at most gatherings, but to me those signs are a GOOD thing. As soon as we start seeing a lot of professionally-produced signs, we can probably assume the movement has been co-opted by a particular party or interest group. But that doesn’t mean we have to prove the “none of us is stupid as all of us” adage is actually TRUE. I think all the ninety-niners (see what I’m doing there?) should take a moment to read Frank Luntz’s Words That Work, and maybe Lovemarks, the brilliant book by Kevin Roberts about why we love the brands we love. The reason to read that first book is because Luntz helped the GOP understand the winning strategy of “it’s not what you say, it’s what people hear”, and the reason to read the second one is because it might help protesters understand that as much as using a black power fist makes you feel like you’re partying with Jimi Hendrix and Malcolm X, it makes the casual viewer think you’re a naive socialist who is out to undermine the American way of life. So while lots of artists like Shepard Fairey and Rob Sheridan are offering up free designs, I think even these talented designers are going a little too “oppressed laborer” with the imagery. So I’ve assembled a few images and ideas of my own about how to reframe the revolution a little. Feel free to chime in or share some interesting thoughts of your own, and if you’re looking for some inspiration, there’s a healthy collection of motifs here. Read the rest of this entry »
[ Comments Off ]Posted on October 11, 2011 by admin in TechnologyTuesday, October 11th, 2011
The iPhone 4s. Why talk to your friends when you can talk to your phone?
This is not the Droid I’m looking for.
I have tremendous admiration for parts of the ethos, and many of the devices that are Steve Job’s legacy. But every time I manage to convince myself that he was just a demanding eccentric genius, and not a total d-bag, I end up learning something new. Like today, when I learned that he used his wealth to (much like the tech royalty in the William Gibson novel Neuromancer) score himself a liver when he wanted one, putting himself ahead of other people that may have been more deserving. But enough personal-level billionaire genius bashing; what really irks me are the last two devices that Jobs introduced before beginning his journey into the After iLife (bless his soul). I already shared the agony of my unsatiated desires over a year ago, when I explained what Kate Moss and an iPad have in common, and bellyached about the Verizon whyPhone, and why I wasn’t all that excited about it. But now I have a new little quandary. I use Verizon, because as much as they suck in many ways, in my area they have the most reliable service of the Evil Triopoly of Mobile Providers available. As you may know, Verizon has a “new every two” plan, so I was finally thinking about breaking down and getting the iPhone, since I would probably be getting a sizable discount. But no-OO-oo. Apple has to go and release this “4s” thing the month I qualify. Great! A new, improved iPhone! Let’s see, unlike the OLD iPhone, this one offers….oh. Not much. But wait! You can TALK TO IT ! Finally a phone you can, er, TALK TO? I don’t want to talk TO my phone, I want to talk to PEOPLE, and talk to them ON my phone. Ah well. I may still break down and get one, but before I do, I’ll be checking out the Droid options. Although I was initially intrigued with both the HTC Thunderbolt and the Droid2, I’m not looking for something to tone my biceps, so the HTC was out, and as cool as the Droid2 is, compared to an iPhone, the interface feels like there’s an extra layer of glass between you and the “touch” part of the “touchscreen”. A likely choice? The latest version of the Motorola Droid X . In spite of its decidedly unsexy and mysterious hump on one end, it is REALLY FAST, and has a nice length for someone like me, who shoulders their phone a lot. See a video review of the Droid X below. And two last thoughts. 1.) Am I just paranoid, or does Verizon download malware to your phone in the last months before your new every two? I could swear that on this and my last two contracts my phone started acting wonky exactly 60 days before the contract was up….and 2.) How does a phone that hasn’t been released yet get a five star rating? See the screen grab from the Verizon site below. Read the rest of this entry »
[ Comments Off ]Posted on October 9, 2011 by admin in PoliticsSunday, October 9th, 2011
Wealthy republicans declare war on nation’s starving, unemployed and homeless.
“We won’t rest until the Middle Class
Menace is wiped out”, promises Gingrich
In yet another assault on the fragile, humble lives of the nation’s more affluent Republicans, hordes of educated but impoverished people nationwide are carrying homemade cardboard signs in public parks. To counter these senseless and brutal acts of aggression, Republicans like Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, and former CEO of BET Robert Johnson are declaring war. “Class War”, as they call it. “The violence and brutality of these working class people is horrifying! My wife can barely work up the nerve for a simple trip to Saks, for fear of having to look at all their hateful unemployedness”, a well-known GOP figure said, adjusting his flak helmet as he squared up for a putt on a secluded golf course guarded by Blackwater security teams and an array of surface-to-surface missile platforms. “Even my chauffeur is on edge lately”, he added. The Kevlar-clad chauffeur, who was standing nearby sipping a Compari and soda, nodded in agreement. “You should see the dirty looks we get when we have to drive near middle class neighborhoods”, he said, “it’s appalling”. As another gentleman set down his Chateau d’Yquem to tee up, he chimed in: “What is probably most frightening is the tattered frocks of entitlement they wear. I mean, if these working class people would just manage their hedge funds better, they could AFFORD all that silly healthcare they’re always whining about, right?” As the caddy set the ball on the tee, the group suddenly threw themselves to the ground in unison, shouting “INCOMING!” After a moment of awkward silence, everyone stood up and dusted themselves off, realizing the “invader” was just the butler walking across the green with a fresh tray of drinks. “JEEZUS, Jackson, why do you have to sneak up on us all ‘working classy‘ like that?”, one of the group asked. “War is hell”, he went on, “if the middle class is going to keep terrorizing us with their insane demands for things like employment, affordable medical care, and a decent education, they’ve got another thing coming. And you know what that thing is? A PREDATOR DRONE, that’s what. They want war, we’ll give it to ‘em. You think Iraq and Afghanistan were a big deal? Just wait ’til we’re done with the working class”.
[ Comments Off ]Posted on October 8, 2011 by admin in ComicsSaturday, October 8th, 2011
It has its challenges.