Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Playing Politics with Genocide

Not too long ago, in response to the Sudanese government's genocidal policies, Assemblyman Bill Payne shepherded a bill through the Statehouse that would prohibit the state of New Jersey from investing in Sudan.

In doing so the Garden State joined Illinois as the only state in the land to put its money were its mouth is when it comes to the extermination of an entire race.

The move to divest was largely hailed as an important symbolic move. In fact, the House of Representatives commended New Jersey and Illinois for their leadership on this issue . Likewise, all over the country, men and women of conscience were pleased to see someone finally doing.... something. After all, genocide is forever and already the number of dead and displaced is too high to count.

You'd think with something as serious as mass extermination , most people would be sympathetic to the cause. But you'd be wrong.

From a recent Rush Limbaugh show:
Democrats "want to get us out of Iraq, but they can't wait to get us into Darfur," Limbaugh said.

He continued: "There are two reasons. What color is the skin of the people in Darfur? It's black. And who do the Democrats really need to keep voting for them? If they lose a significant percentage of this voting bloc, they're in trouble."
Now it's possible that it was the OxyContin doing the talking, but still.....

Limbaugh fans notwithstanding, I suspect anyone troubled about the plight of Darfur is probably concerned that hundreds of thousands of people are dying. Black, white, or polka dotted, it wouldn't matter much. Am I right?

Now it's worth pointing out that Assemblyman Payne's leadership on the issue of genocide in Darfur is a family affair. His brother, Congressman Donald Payne chairs the Africa and Human Rights sub committee in Washington who has made Darfur a huge personal priority. Unfortunately the lack of leadership in the Whitehouse (and State Department) have limited the American response to hollow gestures for the most part. (In fact in a Dec 'o6 interview with Blue Jersey Congressman Payne remarked that the United States finds itself currently in a pickle where our purported human rights values are in direct conflict with our post-9/11 "intelligence" objectives.)

It's for these reasons that New Jersey and Illinois' brave position on Darfur (and genocide on general) is so unique and noteworthy.

Now what?

First of all, regarding Limbaugh, click over to Media Matters and add your name to the growing list of folks demanding an apology from Rush for his latest race-based rant. It might not seem like it would make much difference, but here at Blue Jersey we have a proud tradition of rising up to challenge hate speech on the airwaves. Imus? Jersey Guys? Hello!

After that, call your representatives in Trenton. Very, very few places have laws on the books that specifically address the situation in Darfur. New Jersey is one of them. This issue was very much a bi-partisam one so keep this issue on Trenton's radar!

Finally, call Congressman Donald Payne. He's chairman of the House Africa and Human Rights Subcommittee, thus represents all New Jerseyans in that capacity. Again, remind him how much genocide matters to you.

And when you're done with all that feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section. I've no doubt that you have something to say about genocide or Rush Limbaugh (or both), so by all means fire away.

Sunday, August 19, 2007


Come for the novelty, stay for the musical score. It's stunning. The music I mean.

This video is one of the more iconic of You Tube's short history and I was pretty blown away at first blush. But what keeps me coming back is that delicate (yet throbbing) piano accompaniment by musician Carly Comando. The music in a word: Perfect.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

What's your favorite Elvis tune?

Find your favorite Elvis Presley song on You Tube and leave it as a message! Here's mine!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Google me Timbers

It's amazing what folks try to find with Google. It's even more amazing what some folks try to find on the net, only to find me instead. Here's a sampling of the latest search engine gems, according to my site meter:

* Danish+Male+escorts
* Bigmany in New Jersey
* Dirty bookstores in New Jersey
* Free+Lady+piss
* Toy+Soldier+lawn ornament
* "Do black people have achilles tendons?" and finally.....
* "Let peace begin with me"

Hey, whatever floats your boat!

Friday, August 10, 2007

My radio show

Have you heard the latest installment of Blue Jersey BlogTalkRadio?

Of course we air every Saturday but each episode is available for download. I must confess the response to our radio show have been uneven thus far.

For example:

You guys are morons. If you feel you must continue with this little radio show thing you really should practice a little. Assholes.
I laughed so hard it was like a 30 minute ab workout.
So take a listen and judge for yourself.

These podcasts and more are just waiting to be downloaded to your iPod. What? You didn't know you could do that? Well - you can! Just subscribe here:

Thursday, August 02, 2007

No. More. Junkmail. Ever!

Opting out of Junkmail?  Sign me up!

Junk mail (especially those darn credit card solicitations) creates an astonishing 8,000,000,000 pounds of waste per year.  Of course much of this is recyclable but it's still problematic for two reasons:  1) the trees have already been cut and 2) most people still don't recycle anyway. 

If you're like me, you tear right through these bits of junk mail right away and toss it into the recycle bin.  You also might ask yourself how the hell you, as a consumer, can reduce the amount of junk mail that ends up in your box. 

I recommend checking out this (secure) site where you can opt out! of unsolicited credit card junk mail.  It's akin to the "do not call" list, but it actually reduced greenhouse gas by saving trees and reducing the need to send stuff thousands of miles via mail. 

I signed up myself a few weeks ago and was excited to share this info with you guys right away.  But I wanted to wait a little while to make sure that it actually worked.  I am happy to say, I haven't seen any of this type of stuff in my mailbox in over a fortnight.  Heck, these pieces of mail travel a loooong way just to end up in the trash.  So I am glad that it's an inconvenience I no longer have to deal with.

Every little bit counts.  This suggestion isn't gonna save the planet or anything, but it's one more tool to live greenly and mindfully.