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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tiger Woods Re-Tread (You are not alone)

The original post is about Guv Spitzer but there are so many parallels I had to repost. I keep thinking about it and I think Tiger is getting the worst of it.
He had me fooled.
I thought he was kinda prudish.
Lame, probably a dick.
But honestly at the end of the day I really never even thought about how much T-Woods was getting laid.

I still don't give a...
The lesson here is simple. If you are gonna be good at something,
the best,
get in front of what you like.
What You Really Like.
Your Weakness
Get Out In Front Of It
The public will understand,
look at Hasselhoff.
As for Tiger?
I'm a Huge Fan Now.

I Tried
I tried to stay out of this. I tried to let it go.
As an official observer and loyal participant of the blogotronosphere.
I can't let it go.
You probably know what current bombshell scandal I am alluding to. If you already OD'd on it...sorry.
I must continue this sordid conversation.
Give my fresh perspective.
As a resident of New York State and a practicing member of the armchair sociologist society, I am obligated to not only offer my two cents but to also include my perverse view of the whole mess.
It is a clash of unrealistic standards, outdated ideas and fundamentalist puritan mores smashing up against reality.
We live in a sex charged society that supports a multi billion dollar porn industry but buying sex illegal?
What about the loophole that makes it legal if it is on film. So basically I can pay a ho and film it and it is all perfectly legal but if I want a little privacy, like a hotel room for instance, it is suddenly an illegal act.
I wonder how many porn producers got busted as johns before they decided to make a buck.
Stupid just like our drug laws.
O.K. back Spitz
Governer Spitzer, who once compared Upstate New York to Appalachia, is a penny pinching john who warns his ho's 'there may be some danger involved'.Do you ever wonder exactly how many businesses sell nooky like the one he was using.
What is the point?
Who are we fooling. Prostitution is here to stay.
What is the big deal?
I don't want to hear any utopian rap about a perfect world where everything is free. Bullshit- we won't see it in our lifetime.
I don't want to hear about your daughters, if you keep a eye on them chances are they won't end up a prostitute, the same goes for sons.
Wake up, there is nothing wrong with sex. I don't care what anyone says there is always someone who is going to charge.
Male or female.
I am not like everybody...people who pay a couple of grand for a nice time are in my envy file. I think it is one of the hallmarks of true freedom to be able to do that along with whatever else you can lump in (as long as ther is no bloodshed).
I can't help it...I like him more now.
Before I was rather indifferent I knew his political affiliations in my part of the state were pretty much limited to the Oneida Indian's Land into Trust issue and the New York Regional Interconnect power line issue.
In defense of spitz's crack about Upstate Appalachia; I had the opportunity to ask Tom Brokaw what he thought of the comments when he visited Hamilton College on a lecture tour. In his signature voice, smooth as a shot of 100yr old scotch, he replied: "The dairy industry has taken quite a hit here(upstate) and cruising some of these backroads I have observed incredible rural poverty, there needs to be some creative economic development...."
He agreed.
But thats expected.
I love it when people act human.
McGreevy has to be mentioned in the same sentence.
Spitzer bought ass, McGreevy...another story.
I think the American people's expectations are low enough to actually accept that type of behavior and I am surprised he resigned.
He should have played it down, minimized it .Fucked with the whole cult of public conscience. He should have compared himself to McGreevy and asked our mostly hetero populace what they think.He should have cried on T.V.
My Belgian girlfriend told me: "In Europe the men applaude that shit".
I would have rode that shit out...'hey, I'm only human ova here'
But wait a minute.
The actual minutae of the situation has not reached us yet...all the gritty details. Spitzer's penis size, what type of sex he liked and his incessant haggling over price. The shit they would have a hard time editing unlike the Mike Tyson rape trial that included the most x-rated testimony I have ever heard shared in the paper or on television.
He could not escape the fact that he is an asshole...after everyone forgives him for buying nooky they have sit through the evidence that the multi millionaire, or is it billionaire, governor haggles a working girl over price.
You cannot spin out of that (republican shit).
Dude you are rich as hell- pay the girl.
Spitzer was not exposed because what he did was wrong he was exposed because he is a dick.

Friday, December 11, 2009


Another Re-tread: I wrote this in response to a Mid-Atlantic Great Lakes Organized Crime Law Enforcement Network Conference held at the Radisson Hotel in Utica New York somewhere around the time I first posted. I covered the two day event in true Hunter S. Thompson style.
The most telling aspect of conference was the so-called experts did not have a clue of contemporary gang culture.
They referenced Chicago gangs that no longer exist.
They wooed and wowed the crowd with graphic tales of gang violence.

"These kids do not care" was the mantra.
"They will kill you in a second" they warned.
"Beware" they said.
The absurdity was something close to humorous, tragic. I laughed out loud a few times stifling the last chuckles with a cough. The end result of the whole event was a lot of scared Principals and social workers. There was no real talk about why gangs are an option for so many kids. No real talk about a system's failure to educate many of it's charges resulting in a one way ticket to jail, probation and back to jail.
Everyone agreed they were at war with a new cunning enemy dressed in saggy pants and bandanas. A desperate entity born out of our worst nightmares. More often than not, he is black and young.

Gangs: Who's problem is it?
When I think of streetgangs in Utica the first question I ask myself: Do I know a gang member? The answer: I don't think so.
Crips, Bloods MS13 don't seem to have a chapter here.
I think even the Freemason's may have problems recruiting in Utica. I could be wrong, but I do not think there is practical way to measure gang activity outside of jail. Drug dealing, murder and drive-bys are the informal earmarks law enforcement looks for. But what do you do in a community that already had those earmarks sans the gang graffitti?
I think it is a matter of perception. There have been people in Utica combatting streetgangs for fifteen years. They thought there was a gang problem then.
Crime and Gangs are nothing new to Utica what is new is the awareness. It is not as if Utica suddenly woke-up and the Gangs snuck in over night.
Gangs were, that is , they used to be, a by-product of disenfranchisement, during a time of rampant institutional racism the average black man was condemned to the inner city by segregation forced to compete amongst his own for few meager scraps (limited living wage jobs).
Different groups of men from the same neighborhood, with nothing to do all day, began to hang together, a charismatic member of the group gave them a name, then they began to talk about their dreams and their realities and , most important, their struggles. This scenario played out all over the American inner cities during the civil rights era.
The revolutionary rhetoric, the dream of total freedom,was being lived through these groups. They didn't fear police, they lived according to and created their own set of rules and laws. They created their own governing bodies.
The original mission of many 'Nations' was independence from 'the man', protection from the police and peace of mind.
Police behaved a lot differently in the city back in those days. The noose of racism has loosened its death grip but the marks remain, gangs account for the societal scars endured by generations of people cheated out of their dreams.
Gangs are by-product of poverty, illliteracy and indifference.
They survive on cynicism, hopelessness and greed.
Now they are profitable.
Not only on the streetcorner but Wallstreet as well.
Gang culuture has gone corporate, just look around at all the products our young people are wearing. The gang symbolism is rampant everywhere and for the well informed, it appears to be a mainstream phenomenon.
What are your kids wearing? Do they know the 'crip walk'? Do all their friends wear the same colors and do funny hand shakes?
The sciences of sales and marketing has been applied to 'do-rags' , bandanas, and even prison apparel. The street culture has redefined what it means to be a 'gangsta'.
They are after your kids, corporate America says: "there is money in this gang thing just like the grunge thing".Stay tuned for Crips cereal"
Crips are for kids!!!!
The suits of 'The Dapper Don', the traditional gangster image, have been replaced with oversized jeans, giant chains, and even bigger medallions. The richest and most successful thugs in American history on the wrong side of the law will never be known; that is gang culture.
Do all these things exist in Sin City er' Utica?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Do we know anything else

I had to re-post this. In fact I will be doing a Dancy's Corner review. All re-posts will be titled as retreads.

Do we know anything else?
Life is hard.

From the moment we leave the womb we are forced to breath.
Each breath allowing us to continue our concious existence.
Allowing us to feel.Pain.Pleasure.
What is painful to some is pleasurable to others.But isn't it about the feeling?Isn't it all about the sensation?I told my mother when I was seven I did not know I was alive until I bumped my head.
I just ate, played, cried, slept , shit, and then ate again.
My first sensation of pain made me value feeling nothing. It made me value eating, playing, sleeping and shitting without slipping and busting my head.
Pain was a warning.
There is no warning for pleasure.
There should be.
Do we know anything else?
Outside of my singular existence there are billions of other singular lives. We all share what we know in every way we can but we can never ever really share ourselves...only stories.
We live in a made up world.
Some of us picked our own part in the story(life) others are bit players in someone elses.
Some of us refuse to act and are kicked out of the play.
All of us are limited by our singularity. We are limited by our vessel, unable to really walk in anyone elses shoes, yet, we are all connected.
Connected by the physical rules we agreed to when we took breath.
Connected by our gut instincts.
If we get on a quantum level there is no seperation.
DNA and stories.

Stories of love, war, hate and growth.
Ending is beginning.
Winning is losing.
The point is there is no point.
If you understand you shouldn't beause I know I don't.
I love it.
I cannot think of a better way to exist in this life.
I am.

Monday, December 7, 2009

ClimateGate-Obama Backlash Leaving Welts

Who out there would like their vote back?

Who feels John McCain, Ron Paul, Ron Reagan or Ron McDonald should be steering the American ship?

Honestly McCain looked capable until you saw Palin, with her signature icy grin, standing behind him sharpening something.
McCain looks capable because he is not President.
Obama is...still President
You are... still pissed.
It is not his fault.
The pressure of his office is starting to show.
We knew he was human when we chose him right?
We also knew he was poised to inherit the most fucked up America in world history.
Incredibly Obama has not lost his swagger, but he has lost his semi-fake political smile.
Like a 'game pit' he wilingly steps into the bullseye ready for a fight. He has simplified a complicated American tragedy by addressing two things.
Healthcare and Afghani-Talibanistan.
Where are the other candidates?
Who is running in (let me dumb it down) 0-12'?

Ron Paul? Destroyed by Bruno, Ron Reagan...dead.

Ronald McDonald? He actually is a member of American Monarchy an unseen hand in the political poker game.
Why join the race and play by the rules?

Like always, our Presidential choices were limited .
It is way to early to be thinkin about 2012 anyway (yeah right).

In 08' we were given the option of a shiny new model for the tweny first century leader over the old, reliable, well tuned, gas guzzling battering ram that defined our twentieth century.

We were given (elected) a proven salesman with an understanding for common rhetoric that would unite demographics. We were given a clear choice between doom and gloom war hedgefunds and a more practical, frugal, creative economic model based on innovation and emerging technology.

The people need to be prodded now. Pushed in the right direction. Stripped of their wasteful borrowing ways.

Worried about global warming?

The message is clear: Don't waste your time worrying. The Chinese aren't.

Nothing good will happen until we invest in widespread infrastructure change.
We need to store a lot of carbon folks...a lot of carbon.

Invest in Infrastructure Change.

Invest in Infrastructure Change.

Invest in Infrastructure Change.

It will ignite a movement that will line the deepest pockets of the most daring venture capitalists.

I used to Imagine, I prepare, braced for the worst.

I have to reference the Industrial Revolution to bring this home.

There was a time when American cities that had municipal electricity got it courtesy of direct current D-C. At the time the patent for direct current generators and components were owned by a very influential Thomas Edison. Commonwealth's brother.

In fact, Edison was so influential he singlehandedly retarded our technological progress by about twenty-five years by cock-blocking innovative ideas that did not originate in his lab.

Sound familiar?

A proven scientist by the name of Nikola Tesla actually perfected the DC generators for Edison he also had a more efficient alternating current (AC) that could be boosted (by transformer boxes) and service a much larger area easily and cheaper. He was labeled a fanatic, hoax and kicked out of Edison's lab until the Chicago World Fair. Teslas technology was showcased and subsequently purchased by, let me see...EVERYONE.

It was simply better.

"Dirty deeds... done dirt cheap"

Can you think of any contemporary situations where these types of business practices prevail? Delorean, Tucker....right now believe me there is a good idea being purchased and shelved for the benefit of the bank account.

"Dirty deeds"

Cars that run on water, batteries that recharge instantly, 100miles per gallon for an SUV.

"done dirt cheap"

We went to the moon right?

"Dirty deeds"

All that shit exists (in my innovative dreams).

"done dirt cheap"

Edison did not own or have any financial interest in Tesla's patents and he enjoyed what was referred to as a monopoly with his.

The proof is in the pudding.

Keep moving forward no matter how slow or frustrating it may seem.

Obama knows this.

So do venture capitalistst.


Friday, November 13, 2009

Glenn Breakin It Down

Two thirteen in the morning (the date is at the top real time)the singe of psylocy-whatever still resonating. The oxymoronic , sweet stench of a New york Knick defeat ...what? Glenn Beck with an decidely black , conservative majority in his studio audience. An honest attempt at real Dialogue from Glenn.

I can qoute him.
"O.k. honestly from a white guy...blah blah blah"

It is way to easy for him...he has a black girl as a friend.


If I gave you a rundown of the three previous Radiohead laden hours... fuck it.
Mayhem...nuttin to do wit me.


Michael Steele...what a crock.

Awright Glenn.

The brothas erupt in a mini riot amongst themselves...

Glenn smiles.

Go to commercial.
Ghetto Youtube Video with Negroes rejoicing about Obama and ...Guess what?
Free Money.

In comes Glenn: Free money from Obama...whadya think?

We are on the defensive ...the black people on the panel have to translate the desperation of an uneducated underclass. That is White and Black.
Remember there are only black people on the panel
Defending Integrity.
But Glenn separates the white from the struggle...very well.

The deck is stacked.
I'm changin da channel

Monday, November 2, 2009

Local Politics

New Hartford is considered a Suburb of Utica New York. I do not understand the criteria for a suburb but I'm sure it requires some type of adjoining Metropolitan municipality. Utica, a city of 60,000 is hardly a Metropolis, which means New Hartford is hardly a suburb.

We are all in this 'Upstate' thing together. The larger more expansive lawns of New Hartford will wilt and dry just like their Utica counterparts if the shared agendas of each municipality is not expressed to our elected representatives.

What do we share?

Between you and me : New Hartford does not share anything with Utica unless it results in an arrest.

We, New Yorkers have opted for aggression (going after the Oneidas for taxes) instead of creativity like consolidating all the redundant services offered by The Whitestown, New York Mills, Whitesboro, Yorkville, New Hartford clusterfuck. Two towns, four villages and five different departments. All sharing parts of one block. All with seperate budgets. Or is it three towns two villages and six departments? The County Executive knows (I hope).

Healthcare reform looks easy compared to this. (consolidation)

It is a perfect example of American waste.

Each department unwilling to concede any authority to adjoining municipalities. New York Mills, with its own Police Department, is a village halfway in New Hartford and halfway in Whitesboro. Last I looked Whitesboro has a Police Department and so does New Hartford. All these towns and villages are in Oneida County so The Oneida Sherriff patrols there as well.

Ridiculous. Just like 1600% tax hike for villagers on the New Hartford side.

How did it happen in the first place?


People are afraid around here.

New neighbors are rare. Neighbors that look different rarer still.

At 13 yrs old I was questioned by a Yorkville cop. He wanted to know what I was doing around there. Was I lost or not.

Nothing to fear.

Cops are on the job.

Around here.

A lot of cops are on the job.

And a lot of 'different' people are moving in.
My buddy and colleague, Pete Bianco, conducted an interview of two local Politicians. Listen up.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Why I got a Smirk

The educational achievement gaps.
The dynamics of race and modern sociology.
The real world/s
The rapidly morphing landscape that is The Shrinking World.
The catalyst of chaos,
The nadir of collective purpose.
The deflation, the spiral.
We rush.
The untouched hand. The elephant man.
Tinkling cups on hardscrabble streets.
an oliver twist moment
an evolution to gunfire and a mystery.
Everybody is in on 'it'.
Get youir ipod
Get your ipod
No scar no mark just a slight little spark.
Prophet of confusion
a whittled piece of bark.
Or is it profit from confusion.
Or slight contusion.
plug in.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Future Shock

I have never been as optimistic about our collective progress as I am now.

Do not get me wrong.

We have a long list of issues at home and abroad that are of monumental importance but we are rapidly moving in the right direction.

Blame it on Gen X.

The Dreamers.

We were the first to really go beyond the dream of a world with cars that run on water. A world with a Female or Black President. A world with integrity.

Reality sets in.

My optimism is tempered with a heavy dose of cynicism that will not allow me to ever have feelings of giddiness. No, I am limited to nothing more than optimism and occasional surprise.

Just like an overstimulated peptide it is harder and harder to get a rise out of me. But I still find myself approaching excitement in light of recent events.

Obama was a surprise (still is for me).

The recent policy change regarding Medical Marijuana.

The Nobel Peace Prize.

Rio de Janeiro? Olympics?

Surprise. Surprise. Surprise. Surprise.

I should also list the fact that Tesla Motors is still in existence.

Not a Big Surprise considering it's obvious market leverage in the near future. The venture capitalists just need to hold on until legislation...then, of course, they will turn a nice profit.

In some strange way it seems the generation that I have been a part of all my life (X) is starting to make it's mark beyond the world of punk rock and consumerism.

We are not alone, we get a lot of help from Gen Y.

You see, we have always thought Pot was o.k. or - at the very least - not harmful.

You see, we have always thought peace was cool unless the fight is about sports, drug turf, beer or little sisters.

We also did not readily buy the idea of hate based on race.

I'm not saying there are no exceptions.

I'm referring to the cash register.

I'm talking about the pop-culture anonymous majority.

People who bought M.C. Hammer and Mike Jackson records. A lot of em' that watch the NFL or NBA hate black folks but they root for them.

"Go buy me that nigger Jackson record". or more recently "Get Niggy wit it". Even better "I don't ever want to see you in that jersey again...get the Favre"

It is not o.k., but it is better today. In the recent past those harmful words were usually punctuated by a night of possible nigger (mexican, chink, fag) hunting or beating.

The anonymous majority. The people that used to wreak havoc and terrorize society's subordinates have calmed down.

The same People who knew it was a good idea to put Earl Campbell on Skoal, Michael Jordan on Wheaties and before him, O.J for Hertz.

I'm talking about the music we listen to the cereal we buy...The American Brand.

White and Black interacting, sampling the best of what each have to offer, safely.

The chaotic ever changing world seeming to evolve in an enlightening way. The evangelical remnants of ignorance persist but have no real bearing, just a bullying presence on the political schoolyard.

White people, sick and tired of the bullshit put on by their ignorant brethren...are waking the fuck up.

Don't forget Native Americans, Hispanics and Asians carving additional Niches in the socio-political landscape. In California, where I grew up, The Gay Rights movement has lobbied it's way into the conversation.

Thank God we have a Constitution to sort it all out.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Is it All Misinformation in The Information Age?

Today there are literally thousands of places to get news and information. In our fast paced, changing by the second world, the internet provides those with access the most convenient platform to provide real time news and information at the click of a button.

In this, The Information Age, truth has become a premium commodity. Accurate and speedy information makes a big difference in this competitive world. Pertinent news and information and its delivery is the backdrop of every successful business and whether we like it or not, it plays a factor in most of our lives.

There are newspaper sights , blogs , and huge networks all sharing a piece of the information pie. The traditional newspaper that many of us grew up reading is quickly becoming a thing of the past replaced by an electronic version or completely phased out altogether. Companies gobble up as much as they can in an effort to control as much of the pie as possible.

Here, in The Mohawk Valley, Gatehouse Media has come as close to a newspaper monopoly in this area as possible by not only owning the Observer-Dispatch but also having interest in The Herkimer Valley Papers as well.

Thankfully there are laws that prevent a total monopoly. What if Gatehouse purchased WKTV? They would own all the local news right?

There is no doubt traditional newspapers are suffering. Out of the top 25 papers in the country only one, The Wall Street Journal, saw a slight positive blip in circulation. The remaining 24 saw a loss.

Magazines are not doing to much better, even the National Enquirer saw a 64% drop in readers between 2001-2009.

So, where are we getting our news?

According to 2006 study by the Pew Research Center 81% of Americans get the news everyday. Out of that 57% watch t.v., 40% read a paper, 36% listen to the radio and 23% get it online.

Obviously there is some overlap,the numbers reflect multiple sources which means most of us do not get our news from a singular, exclusive place. We may peruse the paper for a minute, with a coffee in the morning, rush to work and log-on to at break.

An informal poll mirrored results typical of the trends in circulation we have been witnessing. When I posed the question at the Utica's bustling Union Station, time and time again I was told :"I get my news online" or "I watch it on the television". Everyone in a rush, I had problems giving papers away.

The online option has actually added a growing boost to readership for a lot of papers but that does not translate into circulation. It does, however, show what the future holds for journalism.

The free online option has created a growing niche for papers that are still surviving. The online hybrid. The hybrid is a newspaper that offers an electronic version and a traditional version to subscribers. The hybrids have been able to recoup potential losses by offering online subscriptions to the more tech savvy readers while doing their best to retain and reverse the dwindling number of home delivery customers.

It is a losing battle and they know it; every time an elderly, proud 40 year subscriber succumbs to old age, they lose one subscriber forever and more often than not he/she is not being replaced.

So with this large, transient population attentive online there has never been a better opportunity for public relations gurus, special interests and anyone else to manipulate the media.

How is it done?

The distinction between useless information and news can be blurred by slick packaging. Fake news sites like The Onion or BeanSoupTimes do a great job of packaging absurdity. In fact, some of the ridiculous headlines are ironically believable in light of the up to the minute Octomom coverage we had to endure last year from so-called reputable sources.

Using the same model, reputable messengers such as Foxnews or CNN wield a great deal of influence. It's obvious they both command huge audiences but they also stoke the flames of particular ideologies. Each give the people what they want. They each know the demographic proclivities that come into to play when Anderson Cooper 360 is on. On the other hand, if you want as many guns as possible and your country back, tune into Fox. Foxnews, cow-towing to the conservative, wingnut crowd through bombastic blowhards like Glen Beck.

CNN is not much better with their tear jerking, semi-exploitive, scripted look into Being Black in America with the, admittedly hot, Soledad O'Brien to keep us calm and sympathetic.

The distinctions between the two sources are drawn around ideological and economic lines wrenching as much drama out of a story as the law allows, leaving truth as the casualty.

How did Joe The Plumber end up a household name?

For one, he looks like the average Joe. He, like Sarah Palin, represents what I call the anti-informed . And who can forget him standing in front of President Obama (pre-election) with his arm across his chest,and his hand resting on chin, scrutinizing the Harvard Grad on the response to his complex question. One of a thousand pre-Presidential conversations but this one was important, the inference was clear: Joe the Plumber shares your Middle American fears about this smooth talking, educated black man.
Joe went viral.

The term viral translates into untold success or misery for anyone lucky or unlucky enough to go there, viral that is. For one to be christened the flavor of the month in cyberspace is an instant opportunity to prolong the obligatory fifteen minutes of fame each of us are granted or to find a big rock to hide under.

The poor guy, an unwitting pawn for two sides to play a cultural, very public, tug-o-war with. Unwisely propped up by the right to dumb down the debate on our economic woes. Mercilessly scrutinized by the left for his mediocrity. A hero for one group and a symbolic, sort of tragic, example for another.

But don't pity him,he made out well, Joe is no longer a plumber he is reporting for an online new source in The Middle East.

The Healthcare Reform Townhall was our new media toy, a multi-headed Joe The Plumber. All news reports regarding the recent debates were all focused on the raucous town hall meetings and outrageous allegations being thrown around at them. Again we saw constant loops of the same outspoken citizen of the day, giving emotional soundbites to an eager group of listeners.

Where did people get all these wild accusations from?

Misinformation played a huge role in 'the news' reporting. The news reporting plays a huge role in peoples views.

Who can forget the panels on FOX insinuating the crowd at the Montana Town hall was vetted because people were well behaved?

More misinformation thrown around regarding the healthcare reform debate included talk of death panels, rationing, and public option for everyone on planet Earth. These stories sent shockwaves around the country. People were screaming for "My America" back.

Sometimes misinformation is dangerous even reckless and reporting it is inciteful. Just ponder the reports that our President is not a United States citizen. The story actually got traction and subsequent airplay on Foxnews courtesy of Glen Beck. In light of journalistic integrity and the existence of a violent lunatic fringe; the act is/was borderline treasonous. When I personally think of past white race riots and lynchings I cannot help but cringe from the role newspapers played in the sick dramas.

By and large the news media (Local and National) ignored the core issues of Healthcare Reform and focused on the fight. Polarizing people must be good for marketing.

I'm sure many people exhausted by all the yelling, were waiting for a reporter to actually explain the difference between the rhetoric being tossed around by both sides and the truth: what was actually in the current bill.But why would anyone want to go out and find what's really in the Bill? That is positively snore inducing and does not sell ads. Nothing like the mixed martial arts of a town hall meeting.

We see that news, information and truth are totally separate qualities that join in the most divine moments to create what we like to call a relevant story.

Journalism has forever changed; it is now a numbers game based on hits(online visits) and advertising revenue. Investigative Journalism has been replaced with in-depth reporting. Like timely important exposes like To Catch a Predator.

Freedom of Information Act is simply a preemptive tool to let the Government know what the press is looking for.

The definition of a big story has changed. There are rules attached to that definition. For one, a story is not big if it hurts any interest of the paper. Two, if it interest the paper, automatically, it is a big story.

Locally we have been doing a bit better. The Observer-Dispatch has done some good investigative reporting in recent history. And, to their credit, so has The Utica Daily News. But do not expect it to last or happen to often. On most days one can check the headlines on all three local websites (,, or and see no distinction. Which means everyone agrees on what is important and no one is out there trying or allowed to 'break' a story. Basically reporters sit around and wait for a tragedy to happen or someone to get caught with their hand in the cookie jar.

Despite all these variables getting in the way of relevant truth there are few reputable websites that can be trusted to give an objective view of headline making claims and unverified but widely used facts.

To clear the air we need a good source of objective information. The fact is we often go places online or read different periodicals to seek out the answers we want not the truth.

For the truth starved, circumspect observer there are few places to get good objective information. One of them is Politifact. Politifact is Pulitzer prize winning project sponsored by The St. Petersburg Times. Basically they research claims made by politicians and/or heads of organizations and check them for validity.

The easy to navigate site utilizes a truth-o-meter to determine the truthfulness of each claim.Sarah Palin Ex-Governor from Alaska was rated a Pants on Fire liar for her claims regarding 'death panels' within the context of the Healthcare reform debate. There is a detailed explanation to clearly validate the verdict; it also allows the reader to determine the difference between a small lie and a 'whopper'.

Another good site is sponsored by The Annenburg Public Policy Center. Factcheck is also easily navigated with a list of the most recent absurdities and half-truths being thrown around by Democrats and Republicans alike. Again there is an explanation to verify the truth.

The third on my list is the Washington Post's FactChecker blog. which provides detailed information based on solid research and good old fashioned reporting. One of their banner stories on 10/01/09 was an old, popular myth regarding young black males. What do you think? Are more young black (18-24) males in college or jail?

Now I'm Done

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Same Ol'

It is goin down!
Life is fulfilling. The Upstate summer has been full of the stuff good memories are made of.

Cookin out.
Rural Routes.
Hosting live peformances.
Providing a platform for Artists to do what they do.
Ace blew it up on the August 22nd...makin a name for herself
Bruce showed his ass.
I may post some of this footage later.
I ain't proud of it but that is what live shit is all about.
People forgot they were in Utica.
Utica New Yoke!
Home of the Utica Crib(Google it)
Most of you have no idea what I am talking about.
This Blog is Esoteric.
Part of a movement.
Are you
part of a movement?
I'm sorry let me explain what the fuck has been goin on,that is, if you have not perused my ample selections from times past.
And Please.
Excuse my profanity.
I am an artist and an activist.
I have been hosting a series of performances that have warped the understanding of live entertainment in Mohawk Valley.
Experimental film with poetry sans the obligatory self-importance of a high budget operation
All in one one night... a multi-media assualt on common sensibilities and (fill in blank)

You get it

What I been watchin

State of Play
Dexter (All of em')
Dante 01'
Curious George

Monday, August 10, 2009

I don't watch t.v. home.

Movies I watched in the last couple of days.
The Killing Room
Five Fingers
Escape From Witch Mountain

Space Chimps
Comanche Moon
I thought it would be a good idea to list what I watch, to keep an accurate account of what I digest. I could go into detail about each film, I enjoyed them all. In fact I could be considered a very gracious critic, The Paula Abdul of contemporary cinema.
I enjoy the quality of most films made now.
Way better than what I grew up with.
The strange thing is if I watch ten movies in a week it baffles me how the distinct memory of the cinematic experience sort of dissipates, gets filed away in some trivial part of the mind accessed during fits of wit and artificial creativity.
I have given up cable.
A long time ago.
Like a recovering addict I could relapse in a fit of sports anxiety and order it again. Last basketball season was the hardest time in my recent life. But the memories of hours spent, aimlessly surfing on endless lists of channels, rarely finding anything to watch are too fresh.
It was sad the only shows I watched were on VH-1. I knew I needed some sort of help.
So I resign myself to activities with other people who do not watch T.V.
A burden is subtly lifted over time.
Clutter around the house begins to thin.
We have a garden and our weight has gotten onder control.
We watch a movie and go to bed.
No surfing, no commercials.
No commercials,
No news.
No more.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


I almost forgot...I'm 40 yrs old now.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

The War on Drugs: Video of The forum

Thanks to Vinny Brown we have great footage of the entire forum. Once again I would like to officially acknowledge Vinny for filming, editing and posting the entire event, The Other Side for hosting and Pete Bianco for his courage and creativity. I also want to thank everyone (panel and public) that participated.

Discussions like this happen all the time. We, like minded people need to galvanize our efforts into some common sense policies that treat addicts instead of punish them.
The next step in this process is The New York State assembly and Senate. Each have bills currently awaiting passage for medicinal marijuana.

The legalization door is your assemblyman or woman and let them know how you feel.
Zogby and Braden Ritter each have polls...we know we have the numbers.

Speak constituents!!!

This is just the beginning of this conversation here in central New York but be rest assured ,like California and recently Rhode Island, New York State is poised to stay at the forefront of progressive social issues like Medical Marijuana.

The momentum is growing.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Fighting The War on Drugs: A Re-cap

On May 20th we were fortunate enough to get a little media coverage. Yours truly (David Dancy) considered dusting off the ol' press pass and submitting copy of my own. But I am true to my belief that 'real' journalism is objective.
Since I was intimately involved in all phases of planning and implemention of this event I recused myself from covering it as a journalist.
The Observer Dispatch did send a reporter and I think she did a great job of bringing this conversation to the forefront.
Enjoy and get involved...with something.
Legalizing drugs was the topic of conversation during a panel discussion about America’s drug policy late last month.
About 50 people attended the panel discussion, that took place on May 20 at The Other Side on
2011 Genesee Utica. Topics ranged from policy reform, to the legalization of all drugs – from marijuana to heroin and even methamphetamine.
“I think it is okay for adults to use drugs responsibly,” Pete Bianco said after a panel discussion.
Bianco who organized the event with David Dancy, knows his remark is controversial. “I think this is very difficult, because we’ve been told different lies."
The panel included Peter Christ, a retired police captain and the founder of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP); Larry Tanoury, Jr., Oneida County legislator for the 25th District; J. Barrett Lee, a former addictions counselor and vicar of the Free Episcopal Church, and Jessica Maxwell of the Syracuse Peace Council.
Dancy said the goal of the event was “to open up the dialogue.”
“Neither me nor Pete have any answers,” he said. “But what we do know is what we’re doing now is not working.”
“I’ve been thinking about it for a long time,” Bianco said. “And the more I look at it, the more problems there are with ‘The War on Drugs.’”
Bianco cited racism, the number of people imprisoned on drug charges, the amount of money spent on the War on Drugs and the effect of American drug policy on other nations as some of the problems with the current stance on illicit drugs.
“Originally, I was thinking (of) The War on Drugs as needing reform,” Bianco said. Now, however, he believes in legalization.
Each of the panelists gave a brief presentation and then answered questions from those in the audience. Christ said generating a dialogue is a first step to finding a solution. LEAP’s stated mission is “to reduce the multitude of unintended harmful consequences resulting from fighting the war on drugs, and to lessen the incidence of death, disease, crime, and addiction by ultimately ending drug prohibition.”“Law enforcement is here to protect people from each other,” Christ said, not to protect adults from themselves.
Lee said when the average person thinks of “The War on Drugs in America,” they think of an “African American youth standing on a street corner flashing gang colors,” not celebrities or star athletes or suburban teens. But, he said, these people are also affected by drug use.
“Everyone in America is touched by the issue of drugs in some way,” Dancy said.Lee compared the War on Drugs to a “V.”At the two tops of the V, he said, there are rich and powerful people – international organized crime (the source of the drugs) on one side and on the other, celebrities who use drugs without recourse. At the bottom of the “V,” are disenfranchised individuals who are often targeted by law enforcement. “The War on Drugs is essentially a war on the poor,” Lee said. As a former addictions counselor, Lee added that prohibition is hurting those who need to seek help, because they do not want to be labeled as an addict or be followed by that stigma. “This is blocking people from seeking the treatment that they need,” Lee said. “Through this moral mythology … we are hurting people.”
Maxwell spoke about the effects of the U.S. War on Drugs on other nations, specifically Colombia. The Colombian military has a long record of human rights abuses, and Colombia is home to a significant percentage of the world’s flora. The War on Drugs has spurred aerial assaults with powerful herbicides and forced manual eradication of cocoa by the military. “Cocoa is not cocaine,” Maxwell emphasized.
Laurel Richards of New Hartford came to hear Jessica Maxwell speak about Colombia, having recently returned from the South American nation herself. She said, she listened to the other panelists with interest. “It makes total sense,” she said.
Nicole Vitteli, 21, of Whitesboro attended, she said, in an effort to become more educated on different issues. At the end of the discussion, she said she hadn’t yet formed an opinion.
An interest in the issue of racism is what drew Dr. Sunithi Bajekal of Utica to the forum, she said.
Panelists agreed that the current social and political climate offers an opportunity for change.The recession offers an opportunity for anti-prohibition activists, Christ said, calling the War on Drugs, which costs almost $70 billion annually, an economic luxury.“I think we’re closer now than we ever were,” Tanoury said. However, he cautioned, those who want to see change cannot get “complacent” and must “keep the pressure on.”Dancy said that he and Bianco hope to continue the discussion at future forums and sessions including more local political leaders.
“We’re going to keep having the conversation,” Dancy said.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Listen and Share

My summer hours on WHCL 88.7 f.m. are Thursdays 6-8 p.m.
Feel free to call in and listen

Monday, June 1, 2009

Stand up and be Counted

May 20th was great. The public forum which was a discussion on rethinking our current drug laws was well attended and informative. A representative from Oneida County Sherriff Dan Middaugh's drug task force attended, NYS Senator Joe Griffo also sent a rep.
We invited the District Attorney of Oneida County, The Mayor of Utica, The Utica Police Department and members of the Mohawk Valley Substance abuse industry. The DA Mayor and police did not send anyone.
But they were there in spirit.
Before the festivities began I had an opportunity to speak with Middaugh's rep (name withheld). He admitted his frustration with our current situation. He has seen many lives turned upside down as a result of use and interdiction. We both admitted our shortcoming when it comes to a solution but we both agreed that something needs to be changed.
"I just don't know Dave... I just don't know"
Our approach perhaps?
Our perspective?
The notion of good and bad drugs maybe?
Ironically he alluded to the current battle in the sherriff's rural jurisdictions which has less to do with Crack (COCAINE) and Heroin ("bad bad drugs") and more to do with legally obtained prescriptions.

Peter Christ from Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) provided a wealth of facts to illuminate the insanity of our government's current stance when it comes to controlled substances.
The discussion panel was assembled to address all the different variables.
Jessica Maxell from the Syracuse Peace Council was able to shed light on the affects of our High demand on the economy of Columbia. A country rich in natural resources yet The Coca plant is somehow (duh) the main cash crop. She showed how we retard their progress through our symbolic ($) support of whatever political body is in power.
The FARC which controls part of the country is not part of that 'support' conversation. The FARC which collects a 'street tax' on Cocaine exports and is essentially a 'terrorist' organization that is allowed to operate with impunity are direct beneficiaries of the illegal trade. Remember we are just talking Coke.
There are other substances like heroin or opium that drive other 'terrorist' economies the same way. In fact cartels in South America recently (past ten years) have started to produce opium effectively putting a dent in Asia's global market dominance of that particular commodity by at least 25%.
I'm not into the details of The FARC's struggles but I bet it has lot to do with rural exploitation of natural resources and land. Poor people being treated like shit.
With our foreign policy on drugs we navigate a minefield of business and personal interest each invested in the current 'illegal' structure. She had great info.

It's obvious our laws do not address the real problems that are the result of drug and alcohol abuse. We have chosen punishment after the fact over prevention. We refuse to acknowledge the demand instead we put out a dragnet and lock up anyone feeding it. On the other end, the treatment side, we provide 'legal' alternatives like methadone which essentially are worse (for your body) than the drug they are designed to replace. We regulate crave suppresors like Soboxin (spelling is questionable here) so they are only available to a limited number of addicts.
Panel member J. Barrett Lee an Episcopalian Minister and Drug Abuse Counselor talked about the streets and legions of poor addicted people who have never had a real grip on their existence. People used to standing in lines since they were children learning how to use the system like a band-aid.
People who do not know how to fish.
He spoke of the revolving door into jail, rehab , back to the streets, chronic disease then death.
He talked about stigmas that keep these people on the periphery of society content in their need.
Very important when you are part of something. It is sometimes difficult to imagine not having a clue of what to do next. J Barrett Lee gave us that perspective.
Larry Tanoury Jr. 25th district Legislator in Oneida County made a panel appearance. He clearly admitted his lack of knowledge on the subject but considered his attendance mandatory because so many of his constituents are affected by The War on Drugs. He was clearly enthused by all the new information he recieved and felt he was part of something 'grounbreaking' in New York State.
A surprise speaker and Addiction Specialist out of Clinton New York ,Dr. Robert Lowenstein, offered clear testimony about the challenges he faces trying to treat addicts.
In mohawk valley there are over a thousand registered heroin addicts. Soboxin a crave suppressor has been proven very effective when it comes to heroin addiction. Only addictionologist are allowed to administer (up to one hundred scrips) this drug it is regulated by the DEA and each Doctor with permission to prescribe it has to take several courses and regularly reapply. In mohawk valley several Doctors recently lost the legal right to prescribe the drug causing a backlog. In his words "there here several hundred addicts, who overnight, were suddenly unable to obtain perfectly legal prescriptions that, to date, had enabled these people to go about their daily lives without a relapse".
Without these drugs you can guess what happens next.
It was a poignant moment. to hear from a doctors mouth how frutrating it is to actually try to help and how ridiculous he sounds to an addict that can easily get the real deal. The problem with the real deal is they, the addict, has to trade in their hard fought integrity by using a ' different drug' because it is illegal and demonized.
Ask Rush Limbaugh he knows more about it than me, in fact, I bet he knows more than some Doctors and Presidents.
Of course yours truly, David Dancy, facilitated the discussion with unequaled professionalism. there we a few people in attendance hell bent on tangents but we needed to keep this discussion on the topic.
I did that.
It was filmed and will be posted on You Tube in the near future.
Any visitor to Dancyscorner will be the first to know.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Legalize It : Drugs or Slavery

On Wednesday May 20th Pete Bianco and your's truly, David Bass Dancy, will host the first in a series of community conversations regarding decriminalization of drugs at The Other Side 2011 Genesee St Utica N.Y..
We have taken the time to gather community leaders involved in law enforcement addiction counseling and politics. We even invited an expert on Racial Justice (I wonder why?)
To us, it's obvious our current policies are meant to simply lock people up. More often than not they are overwhelmingly poor, black and brown.
Government strategies for reducing the harm caused by illicit drugs are not effective or well thought out. It seems to be a war against poverty or 'poor' people.
The laws and people responsible for enforcing them cause more damage in their interdiction efforts than the drugs themselves.
In fact our policies have never been very effective or well thought out.
Terms like: Just Say No...The War on Drugs have been our ignorant rallying cry.
Basically we have our fingers in the dyke (not literally) as citizens, friends, neighbors and people involved in law enforcement.
We have become accustomed to a social construct that turns citizens into enemies of law and order because they may possess a plentiful, easily attained substance considered harmful or dangerous by the USGuv.
Onmce again, the people locked up are mostly poor and brown.
What Gives?
I have heard the racist response to incarceration rates.
We all know at the end of the day people get high at the same rates regardless of racial background regardless of economic background regardless of education. Regardless of the substance.
Who goes to jail?
If we decriminalize marijuana and regulate the Narco-opiates what will happen?
Will everyone suddenly decide to try Crack and Heroin?
I don't think so.
Prohibition used to be a policy based on race and subordinate group control... it (doesn't) didn't work.
If we decriminalize kids won't be able to sell it. The illegal social stigma attached to addiction would allow thousands of addicts to come clean and get the help they want and need.
Functional users would be able to safely acquire their drug of choice without the hassle of an occasional robbery.
I know it sounds radical . But guess what? I (you) can get anything right outside my (your) door and there is no one checking for I.D.'s or quality(heh-heh).
So what's it goin to be?
I propose we keep our collective heads in the sand, make drugs legal and poverty illegal...makes sense right?...the same people get locked up, it works out perfect.
I think those that oppose legalization on knee-jerk issues are afraid. Many cannot imagine a world without inner city running gun battles and overcrowded jails. Many people still carry the irrational cultural fear of other races. The same school of thought that prevents us from trading with Cuba, working faithfully with Haiti and really being an effective force in the Indies.
Without illegal drugs our ideas about what crime is will change.
It will no longer be illegal to be poor, black or hispanic. Kids with hopes of being the next Kingpin will not be disappointed with their new found career in carpentry, plumbing, get it.
The world will change rapidly...buildings will shoot up in Central New York.
A people at work not at odds.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Avatar & Fear of the 'Thought Police'

Many people have strong views.
Few people are willing to honestly share them.
At least in public.
The ones that do usually hide behind a fake name. The exceptions are guys like David Bass Dancy, David Horowitz, Jerry 'Clapso' Avisato and Andy Senior...guys like Jeff Ott and Len Hart. Why are there exceptions?
Are you afraid?
Where does the fear come from?
Is it fear?
Or are you less of a hypocrite than your conscience will allow?
Are you fine with our wasteful consumer driven existence?
I am.
I just think we can have our cake and eat it too. Meaning we can continue in our comfortable mode of obesity until the end of time if we simply adopt some fundamental changes.
If we don't.
Have a little Soylent Green.
Scientists, scholars, artists unite.
Start a chant.
No more stem cell stifling !
No more Religulous debate around evolution!
No more policies based on fear and ignorance!
No more cover-ups!
When did it become detrimental to question authority in modern America, the way it is?
We had paranoia with Bush and we have a form of blind optimism with Obama.
We need to tell them what to do.
Right now there is a rare air of patience on behalf of the American people. Our dire financial reality is sinking in and no one expects our leadership to fix anything anytime soon.
Our current President may, in fact, enjoy a much longer Honeymoon than his embattled predecessor. That applies only to sensible people. Everyone is aware there exists a lunatic fringe that speaks for a large volume of quiet people (Rush). That is what this post is about The minions that sit silently allowing a void to exists. Never sharing their thoughts or ideas about how we, Americans, are going forward.
Our shared frustrations.
What happened to activism? Better yet, what have we learned from the civil rights and the anti-war movements of the sixties?

Someone should have burned down a bank by now at least kidnapped an exec.

We have learned Nothing.

But there are some big differences today. Take the Bernie Madoff scandal. He is only one guy. But what if there are hundreds of Ponzi Hedge funds.

Just between me and you...there are more Ponzi Funds.

No whistleblowers. Not one person in the SEC to warn the American public before this thing got completely out of hand.

Remember the Breach of Privacy lawsuit filed against The Federal Guv and AT&T?

People working together...gettin r' done.

I would lose a lot of faith in 'doing the right thing' if I lost my life savings along with thousands of people and also knew all my personal correspondence is being perused by some middle management federal hump who can't shoot a pistol.

Scam artists+Business Major= modern economics.

We need guidance direction and a passion as a country...not more war and enemies.

Nowadays it seems people are more afraid to connect with a cause then ever before. A common excuse is fear of ostracizing. "hey man I got a job and a family, I can't risk it".

Or "My position is to important to risk my reputation"

My answer? If you don't stand behind it you must not really believe it. Or you just don't have balls.

Or it just isn't really worth it compared to cable and a full tank of gas.

I admit I am a hypocrite prone to contradict myself five, ten times a day...but I'm working on it.

Many of the issues people are afraid to be outed for are not as controversial as you might think. Stuff like decriminalizing drugs, stopping our current war, and green issues are hardly controversial to me. Yet, a lot of professionals who otherwise could help a good cause choose to sit back in anonymity satisfied with the way it is.

Places like Utica New York, a small City in the center of the state, suffer the most from this type of neo-activism. There are several Colleges in the area which provide an important element, youth and an objective perspective.

They have a big cultural impact, I cringe at the thought of Pratt at Munson Williams Proctor moving. In fact , any of them moving or closing or not existing. The other colleges have lecture series open to the public. The Sacerdote Great Names series at Hamilton College regularly attracts pop culture icons. Most recently John Stewart from The Daily Show. They even had Al Gore (I attended).

Despite the culture that the educational institutions provide, the provincial nature of the Mohawk Valley retards progress. Just look at how many little towns share the same street in some parts of Oneida County. Whitestown, Whitesboro, Yorkville, New Hartford all share parts of one block.

No wonder there is no good public transportation.

Whats different Now?

Unlike the sixties we have the benefit of Internet technology where thoughts and ideas can be shared instantly. So the regional lines are not as important as they were in the past. Events become regional events instead of local events.

Saranac Thursdays and Utica Monday Nite are good examples.

Utica is at a crossroads. It will either be City of Art or Sin...I think we can have both like everyone else.

But not without activism.

In the sixties the disruptive, let me repeat, DISRUPTIVE protests brought attention to their causes they also alienated the groups behind them. The shared agendas of civil rights and the push for peace grew further apart as each movement gained ground in our collective psyches.

It made it easier for the Guv to divide and conquer via COINTELPRO.

Each cause was selectively watered down infiltrated and ultimately made irrelevant, crazy and threatening to the average joe.

But we threw the pot out with the seeds. Protest has somehow been categorized as a Radical act, not a tool of people in a free society. Except in Berkeley Cal where they will chain themselves to entrance of 7-eleven because of Slurpee prices.

Stand up young uns'

What has been lost is the impact of youth. The ever changing social landscape is shaped and fueled by youth. No Guv can manage that variable.

Ask Berkeley

It seems today our youth have little more trust than previous generations but despite that they have chosen to leverage their hopes on a promising new President that is part of a historically inept group of people (Past Presidents).

Thankfully, we have a Presidential Cabinet full of The enemies of Historical American decency.

The Abby Hoffman's and The Huey Newton's= Ex- Hippies, Blacks and Asians.

The ex-hippies and Blacks fueled revolution in the sixties and seventies. Our national identity has never been under threat like it was in that era.

But we have a Constitution (that allows revolutions to be televised).

And we also have a new identity.

It is obvious there is always risks involved with dissent, especially when it involved Government. Some are more humane than others. What separates America from the rest of the world is citizen involvement. We successfully changed the facade of our country.

But that is all.

Help change what is inside of us, as a country.

Do you really want everyone else's oil?

Get on the Green wagon, end war and decriminalize drugs.

Pick one of these issues and stand as person with a name.

Most people will 'get on a bandwagon'.

A few will Preach.

Some will even provide empirical evidence that will support whatever position they choose to promote.

For a few, that have lost loved ones in this war, we are all full fo shit.

But fewer still, will stand behind their own words.

Few, very few, proudly stand their ground without fear.

Fear of the Thought Police.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sometimes You Think You Know

On Feb 15th Utica recorded the first homicide of 09'. Like all murders it was a tragic, senseless, 100% preventable act. An undelible blemish on an otherwise exemplary crime rate track-record for the City of Utica.

We do not live in Maybary. Utica is no stranger to violence, but in recent years the typical street violence associated with drug dealing and other forms of organized crime had been on a steady decline.
Senseless violence, however, is a different story. It really doesn't matter how a particular set of circumstances lead to a murder. It is the act, itself that defines the circumstance.
The fact that violence is the first option for some of us is alarming.
This murder is an abberation. It is an anomoly.
Murder, thank God, is an abberation- an anomoly.
Rich, poor, black white. It does not matter.
In this case, the case of 17 yr old Joshua Smith, we are at a loss. We can isolate contributing factors. We can use statistics and say one group of people is more prone to violence than the other.
Someone always undoubtedly bucks the odds and at the end of the day it is always about loss, waste and regret.
This case is no different. The two main suspects, Harold Jones and Anthony Ruffin were not typical neighborhood thugs. The two teenage cousins spent a lot of time together, most of it, by all appearances innocent.
What goes on in the minds of young people has been a baffling question for adults since the dawn of man. As grown-ups we all reach a point where the void from childhood to adulthood can be a mazelike chasm as confusing as income taxes but through it all we learn to trust, to have faith in the good advice we, as adults, may have shared.
We trust and hope they will not get involved with 'bad things' and they will always do the right thing.
Then something happens. They become teenagers armed with the confidence your good advice gave them. Now they want to see for themselves what all the hubbub is about. Some go a little farther than others revealing issues that may have lied dormant until now. The innocence is withering away.
Who can forget the 13yr old kid in Vernon who killed his father with a shotgun.
No one on the outside ever saw it coming. Only later was it divulged the child may have suffered from some severe mental disorders. But even his dad thought...he was safe.
This case is no different.
We know these kids.
16 yr old Anthony 'Man - Man' Ruffin was an avid basketball player who spent most his time working on his jumper and schooling everyone on his ( and my)block, Linwood Pl.. He has a loving mother and father. A tighknit family with an eye on responsibilty.
There were solid examples for him to follow and not follow. He went to school regularly evan had a curfew.
His cousin and alleged accomplice Harold 'Nick' Jones was also an avid ballplayer and was quickly developing into a man sprouting nearly two inches in little over a year. His development was also validated by his newly acquired squeaky-deep voice. He has allegedly had a few recent brushes with the law and I know of at least one awkward and potentially explosive situation regarding his behavior,but none of these things equalled murder.
Not even close.
According to both of them it was an accident. I am inclined to believe them.
Remember, I saw them everyday.
I choose to give them the benefit of the doubt because the alternative is to hard to accept. I can't get my mind around it. I choose to believe them because I cannot imagine these boys that I have known all these years killing anyone on purpose. I can't imagine these guys walking around playing the dozens with murderous intentions fooling everyone. Most career criminals, prone to violence, work their way up to murder. We would have at least labeled them 'bad kids'.
They weren't had to be an accident.
In the meantime we look for answers. We wonder: How did they get a gun? A 'perfect storm' of negative moments punctuated by gunfire.
Utica is a battle scarred city losing the fight against a stagnant economy. Violence should be a bit further down the list when one counts all the problems that plague segments of our community.
But it isn't, rightfully so.
But that does not comfort the family of Joshua Thompson. The fact it does not happen everyday does not make it any easier to accept.
I offer no solution.
But I will readily admit, I was raised in violent times, more violent than now.
The cup is still half-full.
We can each help fill it.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Octo-Mom + Phelps= Stimulating.

Nadya gets death threats.
Phelps gets dumped by Kellog's.
If you have ever toked the loco weed on a consistent basis there is a 90% chance you have had a POP-TART or a late night bowl of cereal made by who? Kellog's. I would even go out on a limb and assume at least 12-20% of their business is the result of some good chronic.
I know. You're probably sayin to yourself : "You are right Dave, I used to eat cereal after getting stoned all the time"
But you did not do it after winning gold medals...lucky you.
We are so full of shit.
What is up with the bullshit puritanical values we are trying to force down each other's throats?
Crack sells, people buy pussy, drink, watch porn, smoke pot, and on occasion, kill each other. Some even participate in gay sex.
Not just here in Utica New York, but all over the world.
So why do we, in our media, pretend that each one of us do not have anything to do with one of those aforementioned behaviors (feel free to add your own).
We are living in a prelapsarian world perhaps?
Bring back the days of Caligula, when slavery was just a job and grooming was a science.
We are comical in a tragic way.
Blago's hair. Kilmer for Guv.
Spitzer, I trippin?
The effin Governator?- Jesse Ventura?
We jumped the shark years ago (Ronald Reagan).
Are we still at war?
How long have we been at war?
How long will we...?
Shit is crazier than its ever been.
Brace yourselves.
2009 is still young.
But this is more about our newspapers and the editors that pick front pages.
It is about what is important- to us.
I can see it now, the frontpage conference:
"Chris Brown and Rihanna Grammy Brawl...we got art with a few qoutes or two G.I.'s die in Mosul car bomb and economic stimulus" after a two second pause he will undoubtedly pick CB and Rihanna.
I do not blame them.
At least in the sixties they had to report the news. Confused people in the suburbs kept asking why people are burning up the city.
"Hell, we can see the smoke from here"
Back to the War.
It has been what, seven years?
That long?
If people just stay at home and accept the war, murder and billions down the drain then it will continue. I just do not want to hear any more of the two faced, bullshit moral lectures we are soo good at delivering whenever some guy is caught with his dick in the cookie jar or face in a bong.
We can't all be the best. There has to be a reward to being the best. We all know what those rewards are.
It is called anything you want baybay...anything you want.
We have a seemingly hard time accepting a bong toke from one our finest young people.
Yet we somehow accept the backdrop of war and the scenario with same person shooting someone.
It has been Grandfathered into our psyches. The idea.
Our indifference to it. Our arrogance about it. Our haughty, wasteful lifestyles will be our undoing if we do not change.
Electric Cars, Hydrogen Cells, thermal heat for homes.
Hardly revolutionary, but practical and sustainable.
It has nothing to do with political partisanship and everything to do with hypocrisy.
I am as guilty as anyone else. I leave the same carbon vapor trail that you and your kids produce.
But I imagine a different world.
Do you too?
I sit idly by as my chosen representatives vote us out of the future.
Do you too?
I sit silently.
I do.
Stifling a cough.
You too?
Waiting for someone, something to save us from ourselves.
We need a new economy.
A new infrastructure.
We always start here...then we sell it to the world.
And Start all over again.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

New Word

It is etched in stone.
The next performance of PG-13 is scheduled for March 7th at Thornberry's.
In the meantime I am going to try and find something good to do.
For starters I will be doing a live on-air interview with David Horowitz (the guy pictured above) the controversial conservative pundit.
I just recieved word it will not be this week, but stay will happen.
Horowitz is one of the most enigmatic political pundits in contemporary America.
His new Book 'One Party Classroom' hits the shelves on March 10th and is guaranteed to piss-off and alienate at least a million new readers.
He, unlike many of his peers, is not an easy target.,
Horowitz's well thought and decidedly conservative stance is a result of his refusal to be a hypocrite.
Horowitz was raised in a household that embraced communism during the McCarthy era during the fifties.
In the sixties he went on to earn multiple degrees from U.C. Berkeley where he got his feet wet in the protest movement.
His activism also garnered him a reputation, he became on outspoken member of the counter-culture movement.
But why reject the trappings of a good education and loyal following by living a life of sacrifice to the 'state' ala communism?
No, Horowitz was/is a smart guy and knew he was going to make money...something capitalists do.
Make money and lose money (Madoff).
But he has, like I wrote earlier, pissed a few people off along the way.
I really do not know the intimate details of his politics (on purpose). I know he has been labeled a Jewish nationalist by appointment , he has never said this to me. I also know he has been called racist by , white, black , muslim and hispanics.
I will not be influenced by anything I have read about him because I know in the proper context, anything can be made to 'make sense' or be grounds for commital.
Ironically, in a world psycho-social way, he has lot in common with Farrakhan his alternate universe doppelganger.
Not really, but they both serve as the watchdogs for their people( Jews, Blacks respectively). They both will offer their unflinching opinion without apology to anyone who will listen and/or be offended.
Their views are often at odds but they still seem...the same.
I think it has something to do with the ability to make people think through extreme anger.
It does not matter.
Horowitz is relevant.
His opinion matters, a lot of people agree with his thoughts, ideas and theories.
Important people.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

All Good

The show was a blast.
Thanks to Mike, Sal, Bud, Gary, Aaron and everyone that came out.
We had a great time.
There were a lot o' people.
I was drinkin Cabernet.
The end of the show would have left you speechless.
Alex Jager, performance artist, warped the paradigm...singlehandedly almost. He had two of 'The Real Burnouts' with him.
Alas I am watching the superbowl while writing this so I will keep it brief.
Suffice it to say.
PG-13 lives.
Next show March 7 09'.
Check us out on myspace.
Oh yeah, I also promise to start posting video.
Stay tuned

Friday, January 16, 2009

Pg-13 opens 1/23

Ever since I worked in the entertainment industry I have always wanted to open in Utica. I would lie awake at night after working the Saturday shift at All Jokes Aside (Chi-Town comedy club) dreaming of the day I could grace the stage er' -(cough)- banquet room of the majestic and quaint Thornberry's Restaurant.
My ship has come in people because on Jan 23rd I will be hosting what is being described as the best and most unique line up of local talent since the Gong Show.
There will be poets bringing a true element of quality. There will be musical performances...about which I know very little. You all must understand I just want to provide a moveable format that will showcase in and around all of New York State with only one single element of consistency: it will be hosted by yours truly David B. Dancy.`
There will be honesty. I will be as much a member of the audience as anyone else; although I may be asked to participate in some improvisational exercises.

The fact is, many of the acts that scheduled to perform are new to me. it addds to the excitement. We hope to make this a bi-monthly event but the possibility of its growth is limited by the demand for live performance. If we can tap into malaise of an otherwise dull friday night with some drinks, music and laughter you would be crazy not to come out.
On a broader note there will be one of a kind exeperiences such as the lecture by resident performance artist Alex Jager. He will do a slide show lecture on his recent trip to the California hot springs and my hometown: San Francisco.
I'm excited.
I'm psyched.
I don't even know what I am going to say.
But guess what?
I ain't worried.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Cosmo RIP

As you all know I lost my part time community center (Cosmopolitan Center) job working with underprivileged youth.
My job title was Teen Rec Coordinator.
Basically, all of us were victims of a fiscal disaster drill.
A closing operation. A firesale, orchestrated with perfect precision by thoughtful, clever politicians and bureaucrats.
The dizzying roster of board caucuses and absent or ever changing members rendered accountability for oversight moot.
The Cosmopolitan Center, once strong and forever proud had suffered for years under inadequate management. There was never a grant writer, and to my surprise I had a boss (God Bless Her) who was head of a delinquency program and could not correctly spell delinquent or unity (it was on a posted flier for the whole world to see).
James Balckshear, the last champion of Utica, would be ASHAMED.
I was required to teach a life skills course that suggests: 'there are very few ways to obtain money legally during a financial crisis'.
How encouraging.
It goes on
'the lottery, lawsuits are not reliable solutions'. I know you are wondering; did it mention education or work as solutions to financial crisis? As a way of freeing ones self from the ragged jaws of poverty? No, this is social design, a training of sorts. Its where you learn how to be eaten. The life skills class was a primer to waiting in line at social service and how to catch the bus...stuff all these kids already know.
What about their dreams, the achievable humble aspirations that many of these kids have. I know we can't just hand out potential. The notion of all of our kids being excellent in the right conditions is unrealistic. Despite the fact that we each have something we are good at that can probably add to the community's wellbeing. We can foster an environment where kids get to know who they are and how their fancy, brand spanking new brains work. After all, an afterschool program is the place to explore these ideas. But THIS. It was the worst curriculum I have ever seen. I'm not even a teacher. But it seemed to me like a subtle way to suck the dreams and motivation out of a young mind. Just provide endless details about catching busses and cashing county checks, with a multiple choice test at the end. Only an educated mind with a sinister goal would green light this crap.
These children were grounded in the boots on the ground reality you read about, all to cynical, prepared and committed to living a mediocre life.
No Dreams. No Dreaming. No time to dream. Most of them already written off.
One kid told me he wants to be a mailman.
I told him "Keep your nose clean kid, you'll be there in no time, in the meantime- B average...minimum"
That was lifeskills.
The place was a wreck these kids really deserved better...but nothing?
You decide.
I'm guilty too, I worked there.
I think back and I feel like I should have spoken up then. I needed and liked my job. We all did. But the 'need' and the 'like' seemed to get in the way of 'The Kids'.
The janitor could barely walk (gout). So obviously the place was a sty. They never renegotiated contracts with the county and no one cared.
The price of gas and everything else is going up every other non-profit game in town is renegotiating according to cost of living and business increases yet we, for whatever reason, just sit and accept whatever they (the county) give us.

"Don't wanna rock the boat"We did not have working water faucets, the ceiling leaked and the barf-rooms were petrie dishes.

Did I mention no one cared?

For seven decades this place was a destination for young black people in the City of Utica. A relic of segregation when we did not have choices of where to go.
Now we do. And we chose to let it die.
In reality it was put out of it's misery.
An old leftover from a once proud black community unceremoniously shut down.
No goodbyes, awards or tears.
It is sad.
I wrote earlier: James Blackshear, the last champion, would be ashamed.We black Uticans can blame no one. We made clear choices and stood idly by as the place was run into the ground.
Who wants to donate stuff when the staff pores through the donations before they give it away, that is, if they give it away.
Who wants to help when there is no transparency, nothing but miscellaneous expenditures and Peter takin from Paul.
After all this we were told it was going to be alright.
Our jobs were safe.
Even though I was a part time employee I was told I would be seriously considered for the fulltime position of Youth Advocate.
We were all told that the agency taking over our social service contracts (MVCAA) would be considering us for employment. The plan was to continue providing services to the existing clients which are basically teenagers.
In the months I facilitated the after school program which consisted of Basketball and other incredibly low budget activities I developed a close relationship with a lot of the children. I know all their names, what they want to be when they grow up and how they are living now.
My boss does not even care. Or maybe I got it wrong . Maybe she just can't remember their names.

The fact is, I have been left behind.

My cover letter, resume, interview all seemed to be a formality. I have watched everyone else I worked with make the transition from agency to agency leaving me out in the cold. I will not even get into the details but suffice it to say someone does not like me.

I have never been part of the clique at The Original Cosmo. I'm not a Utica native. I write, perform in plays and reject the notion of Little Wayne and Madea as culturally relevant to my community. Oh yeah, I also refrain from thumping the Bible and invoking the name of Jesus as a convenient ally in any debate. It also does not help I have a white (Belgian no less) partner and a bi-racial child that is still a novelty.

"He looks soo white" or "That's not his baby...can't be"

I also would not engage in petty I look back I think I should have got involved in the backstab frenzy. I would probably be at work right now.
I can also spell- d-e-l-i-n-q-u-e-n-t
The most telling factoid is this conversation. "So Ms. Blah Blah how did your interview go"?
"Fine Mr. Dancy but that part with the computer test...I didn't do it"
"Yeah... it was hard"
The computer test consisted of excel and a response to a simple client based 'life crisis'.
She got the job.
So far- I have not.
Maybe my passion is oft putting?
Maybe my command of the English language intimidates some people.
It didn't intimidate them when I was writing articles for their little causes.
But all that is behind me. Life goes on and the familiar faces change places.
Meanwhile I am drawing up plans for a Monorail

Friday, January 2, 2009

Its 09 What's a guy to do?

I am still unemployed.
I am not short on offers, semi-offers, and interested parties but that has not translated into anything but...frustration.
I am goin to give myself a job.
I will be hosting Poetry Group #13. It is a travelling smargasborg of performers from in and around Utica who will do all kinds of different stuff for the enjoyment of a 'dinner theatre' crowd in a 'dinner theatre' atmosphere.
Yours truly will be hosting.
Be very afraid.
There has never been this type of no holds barred live commentary on a stage in Utica.
My topics will include drugs (use, abuse, love, hate), money, sex, relationships, adulthood, childhood, politics...and drugs.
Be there.
Be ready.
I will be.
For info on performing or anything else call or text 315-723-5020