Wednesday, November 29, 2006

You've Been Bad, No iPods For You!

President Bush bans sale of iPods to North Korea

Wednesday, November 29, 2006 - 08:49 AM EST

"The Bush administration wants North Korea's attention, so like a scolding parent it's trying to make it tougher for that country's eccentric leader to buy iPods, plasma televisions and Segway electric scooters," Ted Bridis reports for The Associated Press.

Bridis continues, "The U.S. government's first-ever effort to use trade sanctions to personally aggravate a foreign president expressly targets items believed to be favored by Kim Jong Il or presented by him as gifts to the roughly 600 loyalist families who run the communist government."

"The list of proposed luxury sanctions, obtained by The Associated Press, aims to make Kim's swanky life harder: No more cognac, Rolex watches, cigarettes, artwork, expensive cars, Harley Davidson motorcycles or even personal watercraft, such as Jet Skis," Bridis reports.

"Experts said the effort - being coordinated under the United Nations - would be the first ever to curtail a specific category of goods not associated with military buildups or weapons designs, especially one so tailored to annoy a foreign leader. U.S. officials acknowledge that enforcing the ban on black-market trading would be difficult," Bridis reports.

Bridis reports, "'It's a new concept; it's kind of creative,' said William Reinsch, a former senior Commerce Department official who oversaw trade restrictions with North Korea during Bill Clinton's presidency. Reinsch predicted governments will comply with the new sanctions, but agreed that efforts to block all underground shipments will be frustrated... 'If you take away one of the tools of his control, perhaps you weaken the cohesion of his leadership,' said Robert J. Einhorn, a former senior State Department official who visited North Korea with Albright and dined extravagantly there. 'It can't hurt, but whether it works, we don't know.'"

Are you freaking kidding me! Does anybody not think for one moment that North Korea couldn't buy all these luxury items somewhere else in the world? Way to go George, that is showing them who is boss. Bad guys all over the world are now going to change their ways for fear of not being able to get a iPod from the US.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Today I heard a very sad fact. The Iraq war is now 1347 days long. That is as long as the US was involved in World War II. Does anybody have a plan for how we are going to get out of this war before it lasts another 1347 days? George?

Friday, November 17, 2006

Computer Update

Way to go Apple! I made an appointment for last Tuesday to bring in my dead Powerbook to the Genius Bar at the Apple Store in SF. I was hoping for the best, but prepared for the worst... being told my computer is out of warrenty and it will cost $$$ to fix.

Well I explained the problem, that it has been in for repairs twice and still not fixed. The tech, calm as could be, said your hard drive is dead (no big deal as I had a full backup from the night before) and that he will comp all repairs! Thank you Apple!

Apple is just the best company... the best products and they treat their customers with respect.

Paul Stanley, The Fillmore - November 13, 2006

Paul Stanley, The Fillmore
San Francisco, CA
November 13, 2006

I started to write this review by running down the setlist and talking about each song, but then started to think about what was really important to me as fan. With the internet we all know what the setlist was going to be before arriving. So what is important? How much fun it was and how Paul made me feel. The rock and roll experience. Music and rock and roll is about the feelings in your gut, your soul, and your heart. It..s not about technical perfection; it..s not about looking for mistakes. It..s about raising your fist when you are 42 and going YEAHHHHH!

I was lucky to be able to see Paul on his first solo tour back in 1989. I was living in Chicago at the time. When I heard he was touring I had to go. The nearest show was in Detroit, so it was a road trip. I was in awe at that show, basically third row in a club watching Paul Stanley perform a show he wanted to perform, they way he wanted to perform it. Fast forward to 2006. When I got word that Paul was definitely touring to support his second solo album ..Live To Win.. I knew I had to go. This time I didn..t have to travel very far, maybe 20 minutes from my home to the legendary Fillmore.

Paul is definitely the king of the stage. He just started the show by walking up to the microphone and talking to the crowd. No grand entrances, no pyro, no effects.. he didn..t need them, he..s Paul Stanley of KISS. What more of an intro is needed? His command and confidence is so apparent out of makeup. He looked great and moved great out of the makeup and costume. I have to be honest and admit that more than once during the show I wondered what do I need the makeup and costumes for. This felt good, this was new and exciting.

It was great to experience Paul so casually interacting with the audience. Not the choreographed feel of a KISS show. This was just natural; this was a rock show as it is meant to be.. a tight band, great songs, intimate venue and an unlimited supply of energy. Paul was responding to his environment, letting it guide the show. The humor he displayed on stage had me laughing and smiling. Paul made it feel like I was watching him perform in my living room. I have always felt that Paul was the heart and soul of KISS, in 1989 I saw my first proof, and in 2006 he cemented that feeling forever. During this show I got to see the heart and soul of Paul, a musician. A musician who wants to perform and wants to be creative. A musician who truly feeds off of and needs the fans in the audience. This is rock and roll.

It has been amazing to grow up with Paul Stanley and his songs. The first time I heard many of the songs they were just great kick ass songs. But as I have grown older and experienced things in life.. some good and some not so good, those songs took on a whole new meaning and were elevated to a new level. ..A Million to One.. was originally a great heavy tune, but hearing Paul sing it live brought out the lyrics and I found myself standing there getting absorbed into the song because I could relate to it, what a feeling. The song that will always send shivers up my spin is ..I Want You... That was the very first KISS song I heard, on the very first KISS album I bought. The moment that song starts I am taken back 30 years to the exact moment and place I dropped the needle onto side one of ..Rock and Roll Over... At the Fillmore Paul brought me back once again. Damn, what a feeling. That is rock and roll.

If you were hoping for a play by play review, too bad. I am not a musician, I am not a completeist needing every detail. I am a music fan who wants to see a live show by a performer that wants to be on stage, who needs to be creative. I truly hope for all those fans that didn..t have the chance to rock with Paul; that this tour will pick up again in the near future. I for one know I want more Paul Stanley being creative on tour and on album.

God it was so incredibly refreshing to see this show. I remember reading a great quote, ..We do not stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing... Thank you Paul.

P.S. Thanks Paul for requesting that I write this review for

Currently listening :
Live to Win
By Paul Stanley
Release date: By 24 October, 2006

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Damn Computer

Damn, sometimes I hate computers! I come home from LA, sit down last night to catch up on some things on my Powerbook and it freezes. Now this has happened before and it has been sent back to Apple twice for repairs. Well obviously they haven't fixed it. The laptop won't startup on it's own, unable to locate a System to start from. But, I can easily boot it as a hard drive when connected to another computer, even us it to startup another computer. But the damn thing won't start on it's own. So what the hell is the problem. No apparent disk problems. Here is the kicker, the second repair was right when the warrenty ran out. So now it is five months past the end of the warrenty. You think if I bring it back to Apple again they will try and fix what they failed to do two prior times? I would hope so since they didn't do their job. If they would have fixed this there would be no problems. Now I am out of warrenty and only want this fixed. Should I be penalized and made to pay $100s because it is out of warrenty. No! I will keep you posted since sometime this week I will bring it in to the Apple store in SF and make my case. Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 9, 2006

Things Are A Changing

Yep, another blog! I am in LA on business and during a long day filled with many meetings I catch a whole bunch of news. Rumsfeld is out, the Republicans lose control of the Congress and Ed Bradley passes away. All are huge on their own, but happening all within 24 hours is just crazy. For a mid-term election this much change is amazing. It all goes to prove the power of the people and the immense power we have to change what we don't like. This change is something we need. This administration has created quite a mess, with no clear idea of how to clean it up. This election clearly showed that the country wants changes now. Maybe they won't be better, maybe they will, but change is the only way of hoping to improve this mess. Maybe Bush should have worried less about internet gambling and more about the war in Iraq. Don't we all feel better that we can no longer gamble on the web, NOT. What will tomorrow bring?

Currently listening :
By Firehouse
Release date: By 21 August, 1990

A Fly on the Wall and The Doors

Last night I had a invite to be a fly on the wall for an evening of events in Hollywood celebrating The Doors 40th Anniversary. The evening started at the Rainbow Bar and Grill having dinner with Lonn Friend and the lovely Judy... all while Bon Jovi Slippery When Wet played in the backgroud. Great conversation about Lonn's book and about Lonn. Ah, rock and roll you gotta love it! After dinner we strolled down to the Whiskey and into the VIP tent in the back for some drinks and smoozing. More conversation, more pressing the flesh. After a bit we headed downstairs to the Cat Club to see The Doors museum and Ray Manzarek. From there it was down the street to Book Soup to watch Nuno and Perry Farrell do an acoustic set. There is some great buzz on the project and recording those two are working on now. More great conversation right on the street. Rock and roll seems like it's always about stories and everybody has some storeis to tell. Lonn definitely has a world of them and you can get a taste in his book Life on Planet Rock.

Currently listening :
Cheap Trick at Budokan
By Cheap Trick
Release date: By 26 March, 2002


Thank you to everyone who exercised their right to vote on Tuesday. A wave of change is moving through the country. Change can be scary, but I also believe change is good. Change is also the only thing you can count on. Nothing ever stays the same.

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Death of a President

Heart pounding and chilling. Last night I watched the movie Death of a President after hearing some buzz about it. It really hit me. The 10 second recap... President Bush is assassinated in Chicago, they quickly "associate" it with Syria using some very weak evidence. At the same time another person of interest is ignored. This person finally commits suicide and his suicide note states how he is blaming Bush for the death of his son in Iraq. A innocent person is convicted for the murder, because this person is who the government needed to convict. It had to be a terrorist group, not a lone citizen. The movie had me completed focused and pulled in. They filmed this using real footage from various events and this lends to the realism. My heart was pounding while watching the assassination happen. It was sad, but completely believable that this how things would play out. As much as I want to see President Bush removed, I don't want it to happen like this.