Friday, September 25, 2009

G 20 vs the WTO:

As the G 20 summit gets underway in Pittsburgh, a recent report from Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch finds that the push for regulation at these summits may be undermined by binding advancement by the World Trade Center to further advance deregulation.

Read or watch below:

I hope I'm not the only one out there that sees there needs to be massive change, if not abolishment of the WTO. There has to be a way to do it, and we need to take it seriously.

If this doesn't happen, then this ridiculous cycle that led to the current economic shitstorm will only continue downward.

More G 20

Today marks the first day of the G 20 summit and, as expected, protestors are facing adversity. From the use of L RAD (sometimes referred to as a "Sonic gun") and tear gas to National Guard troops and detaining activists before the fact, an overly intense law enforcement presence is in full effect.

Earlier tonight I came across footage of riot cops using sonic weapons and asking the crowd to disperse. I wondered how long it would take before we heard of people trying to disperse meeting up with riot cops blocking a way for people to disperse. I figured it would take a day or two to find out. 5 minutes later a friend sent me a link from Cindy Sheehan's blog confirming just such a thing happened.

Like most people aware of how things go down, I'm angered by this but not surprised. While it is likely the cops were given a green light to crack heads and use force, it can't be 100% proved at this time. I also wonder if some of the overreaction comes from those cops and National Guard troops from elsewhere called to the scene who might not be familiar with the protocol. While I'm willing to consider that as a possibility, I have a sinking feeling there's more than a pillar of truth on the former argument.

As the news trickles in from the system of tubes we all rely way too much on these days, new things will emerge. For now, it's another reason that sometimes the new boss is all too often the same as the old boss. Time will tell what happens next on this.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Watch This ......

With the G 20 going on in Pittsburgh and the economy still in its current state of somewhere between shitstorm and clusterfuck, it seems hard to take in all the issues around us (especially when most people are simply trying to survive). When I came across this interview with Ralph Nader, I had to turn you onto it as it cuts to the quick on a lot of relevant issues these days.

Whether you like Nader or hate him, we need people like him to put things in perspective and keep people in check. We all need to do more things like this - now more than ever.

Some Things Never Seem to Change

Tomorrow marks the latest round of globalization talks with beginning of the G20 Summit in Pittsburgh, PA (a location reportedly chosen by President Obama to minimize protests). As world leaders discuss issues regarding world trade that seems to benefit business over the needs of its citizens, protests are already underway.

As there are protests, there are also reports of police harrassment as activists report being detained and illegal seizures. Though a Federal judge has dismisseed one case claiming no "irrepairable harm" has been done, Seeds of Peace still report police harrassment. This, even though a judge ruled six group can protest the G 20.

While this is a small trickle from an iceberg, I have a feeling that in the next few weeks we're going to be hearing more reports of police harrassment and brutality towards environmental and anti globalization activists in Pittsburgh. If something emerges that Pittsburgh made the G20 pay insurance to the city in case of damages, then we'll know something may be up.

I know some will say this is just an exception or that with added police presence mistakes will be made. However, having seen how things have unfolded in hyperdrive over the past decade in this society, I have a feeling the plans might be made to bust some heads. I really really really REALLY hope that I'm wrong on this, but I have a strange feeling I'm right.

Some of you reading this may disagree with me and that's your right. Now go argue amongst yourselves, I have things to do.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Review - Panther Entropy

NOTE: We normally don't use the blog to do CD reviews. Once in a while however a release's timeliness to a current situation or potential rarity requires us to make an exception. This is once such release.

PANTHER - Entropy LP

Panther is one of those bands that has snuck up under the radar and surprised a lot of people with their previous album 14kt God. On their latest, Charlie and Joe takes their avant rock in a different direction. Here, pianos play a more prominent role as they filter in a mid 70s pop cum art rock feel into these songs, taking the listener on a journey that can be as emotional as it is unexpected. The overall creation is music that is fairly unique though not as obtuse as some of their previous work could be at moments.

However, the ability to surprise is here as noted by "Birds that Move" where an incendiary guitar solo moves the song from a catchy as hell indie meets classic pop rock hybrid into an increasingly intense aural beast. These atmospherics add a texture of the music that move it apart from much of what is heard these days when it comes to punk/indie rock. This 12" continues to walk the thin line between potential pop classics and driving, unexpected twists and turns as personified by "Bridge on Fire" where, as the song progresses, the rampaging drums in the chorus add an intensity lesser bands wouldn't think to put in a song like this. Closing things out with a pair of dance remixes by Copy ("Birds That Move") along with Lips & Ribs ("Love is Sold") that take the tracks in different directions and you have a record that still has taken me by surprise.

As I said, it's extremely rare that we put a record review on the blog. However, given that this is a limited edition release (to the best of our knowledge only 500 copies are available - and only on vinyl) and it seemed more responsible to place it here rather than wait for the print issue to review it (and then repost it on the TTWN website once we get the issue released). While this will be rare, Panther has released a damn good record that flips the script on what fans may expect from them while taking underground rock a few steps forward sonically. A definite future classic album, in my honest opinion. Get it while (and if) you can.

Availble at either Kill Rock Stars. Or from here (if really anxious)