Monday, October 31, 2011

Goldman Sachs Letter on Occupy Wall Street

Dear Investor:

Up until now, Goldman Sachs has been silent on the subject of the protest movement known as Occupy Wall Street. That does not mean, however, that it has not been very much on our minds. As thousands have gathered in Lower Manhattan, passionately expressing their deep discontent with the status quo, we have taken note of these protests. And we have asked ourselves this question:

How can we make money off them?

The answer is the newly launched Goldman Sachs Global Rage Fund, whose investment objective is to monetize the Occupy Wall Street protests as they spread around the world. At Goldman, we recognize that the capitalist system as we know it is circling the drain – but there’s plenty of money to be made on the way down.

The Rage Fund will seek out opportunities to invest in products that are poised to benefit from the spreading protests, from police batons and barricades to stun guns and forehead bandages. Furthermore, as clashes between police and protesters turn ever more violent, we are making significant bets on companies that manufacture replacements for broken windows and overturned cars, as well as the raw materials necessary for the construction and incineration of effigies.

It would be tempting, at a time like this, to say “Let them eat cake.” But at Goldman, we are actively seeking to corner the market in cake futures. We project that through our aggressive market manipulation, the price of a piece of cake will quadruple by the end of 2011.

Please contact your Goldman representative for a full prospectus. As the world descends into a Darwinian free-for-all, the Goldman Sachs Rage Fund is a great way to tell the protesters, “Occupy this.”

We haven’t felt so good about something we’ve sold since our souls.


Lloyd Blankfein
Chairman, Goldman Sachs

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Blues a Saturday: John Lee Hooker Boom, Boom!

This is from the mid-1960s in the UK. Not everyone seems to know how to dance to John Lee Hooker.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Blues on a Saturday: Jammin' the Blues

A 1944 short film, nominated for an Acadmey Award and decades later selected for the National Film Registry Musicians include Lester Young (tenor sax) , Harry Sweets Edison (trumpet) and Barney Kessl (guitar), Illinois Jacques (tenor sax). This was a a project of Norman Granz, a leading jazz concert and record producer. Granz was a very committed advocate for integration in an era when that took some gut.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Blues on a Saturday: William Clarke "Trying to Stretch My Dollars"

Blues on a Saturday: T-Bone Walker with Jazz at the Philharmonic

This is rare, unexpected setting for bluesman T-bone Walker, one of the first electric guitarists and a big influence on B.B. King and an entire generation of bluesmen. This is from 1966 BBC broadcast of a "Jazz at the Philharmonic" concert. JATP was series of jazz concerts and tours organized by Norman Granz from 1944-1983.

Occuppy Wichita October 15: photo slideshow

Here are photos from today's Occupy Wichita action. There may be some video in a few days. If last week's theme was unions support the occupy movement, this week was Move-On and Van Jones' Rebuild the Dream movement. Of course, there were labor people there today, and Mo-on folks last Saturday.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Occupy Wichita October 8, 2011

It was a rainy Saturday in Wichita on October 8, but there was still a decent turnout for the Occupy Wichita event on E. Douglass. There were about 50 to 80 people there. Perhaps a little more than the previous Sunday. The crowd fell short of the 500 that some of the OW activists were hoping for. But itw as a spirited gathering. It didn't seem to be just the same people as on Sunday. For one thing, there were a number of union folks present, from the SEIU, IAM, APWU, IBEW, and Teamsters. Also members of Move-on, Wichita Democratic Socialists, Sunflower Community Action, and the Tequila Party.

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Saturday, October 08, 2011

Occupy Wichita October 8

The Occupy movement continues in Wichita as it expands nationally. There is small group meeting nightly, but today there was an effort ot get a larger turnout. Unfortunately, it was a rainy day.

A broader group of participants, including folks from the labor movement. I saw people from the APWU, IAM, IBEW, SEIU, and Teamsters.

There is still a lot that needs to be done if the movement is to be broadened and deepened. I may have some good video interviews, but they will need to be edited. In the meantime, here is a photo slideshow. 

Blues on a Saturday: (Various) Let's Go Get Stoned

Bet you didn't know the low-down, drinking song "Let's Go Get Stoned," a number 1r&b hit for Ray Charles in 1966 was written by the Motown team of Ashford and Simspon? I didn't and the song has been a favorite of mine since I heard it on the radio not long after it came out. And I didn't know it was a hit first for the Coasters, though that version didn't get much play on white radio stations. It has become an often covered song. We'll start with a live version by the Derek Trucks band and follow it with Charles, the Coasters, and Big Mama Thornton. I'm not including Joe Cocker's version, which is already too famous.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Occupy Wichita

Events in support of the Wall Street Occupation have spread across the country. Even Wichita.

There was a rally of sorts Sunday in downtown Wichita with perhaps fifty attending.

There were a few of us from Wichita Democratic Socialists of America there, getting signatures for Congressman John Conyers full employment bill.

I didn't stay for all of the general assembly, but I understand there is going to an effort to form something ongoing.

Locally, as nationally, real success will depend on linking up the young (and no so young) activists of the occupy moment with unions, progressive groups, community organizations and the like..

Here's a little video, I put together.

And, here is a photo slide show.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Blues on a Saturday: LIncoln Center Jazz Orchestra "Back to Basics"

 The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra gave a great performance Wednesday night at the Orpheum Theater in Wichita.  There was a near-sold out crowd. This is third time I've heard Wynton live in person and he has universally given fine performances.  The rest of the band was outstanding. 

Som other notable jazz events coming up in Wichita. October 8 Craig Owens and the Bodo Ensemble at the Fishchuas (524 S. Commerce St.)--free. October 23 Joe Lovano and Us 5 at Abode Vision. Tickets are $60 ad $100 but they come with lots of perks. Tickets are limited to 150 and 100, but come with lots of perks. There is no guarantees in jazz, but this should be great.