Archive for the Arts (Design & Performance) Category

Trumpian Economic Report 2020

Posted in Book Reports, Cartoon Comics, Commercial Corporations, Cooperative collaboration, Crafts, Critical Commentary of Civilization, jobs, Legal / Laws, Multimedia Communication, news, Organic Development, portraits, relationships, Services, Sales or Trade, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2019 by Drogo

Artisan Vs. Commercial Market Selling

By Drogo Empedocles – January 2020

In a Trumpian economy most of us are forced to be beggars even when we offer work in return for money, due to an excess of labor not needed or desired by the rich. Trickle-down Reaganomics has failed us, and is still being pushed on us by Trump and all corporate politicians who sold out. We must resist falling to the attacks causing the destruction of our lives and plan to not just survive but rebuild a better world for our children.

Trump’s tax plan benefits the rich, and diminishes the middle class. The estate tax is gone now so that rich children can inherit all their parent’s wealth freely without earning it, while poor children suffer without deserving it. Personal exemptions have been removed. You can still itemize donations, but the standard deduction bar was raised with an overall .5% tax rate reduction. Those basic changes might negligibly benefit lower incomes, but average to upper middle class households are losing thousands on whole due to other changes in the tax plan.

I lost some financial support despite my working through the holidays on several projects. I won’t be able to do as much free or low-budget work with others, until i can secure more income to cover my own expenses at least. my income is only $700 a year recently, so i feel like i get by with quite a little actually. I only currently use one sound program most weeks, and focus on word (writing) programs, which have glitches between formats, but i am able to publish that way. So for over a year i have only been using two editing programs.

Most people should know that any work has a price; and so my work is for sale, as with any artist; we need means to live so we try to sell prints and originals if we can. If people do not know how to want to share money with others, i am not sure how i can help them except to remind them by bringing it up sometimes. I focus on my work more than sales, because i do it for the work not the sales. If i am asked to be more of a sales person i would not do it. i dont know if stating that i will keep doing my own work the way i want no matter what will reduce interest in investing in me or increase it long term; but i really do not see many options to sustain my career legacy. I may get some temporary side jobs like working for Census, but even if i got a huge increase in income what matters to me is what is created with what i have ultimately.

SCOD social capital has increased overall i believe, which is hard to define since it is not income based. I am close to founding a tristate network for hosting art, music, and writing events; but the design is mostly socially dependent, using properties in WV, MD, and VA. The financial components like ticket sales and payments are totally based on how many people i can get to coordinate together. we currently have several proposals still being formed, for multimedia broadcasting and sharing local events, i can pursue these negotiations without financial losses. ive felt on the verge of something big over the years, but i never know when the tipping point will come because … and this is the hard part to talk about, the complex dynamics of partnerships.

I am proud to ‘beg’ with something of quality to offer in return. When you buy my work, you support many other people; because I collaborate with and buy from other artists and friends. To anyone that thinks I am begging by being honest that I do not earn much, I argue that bragging about how good your work is and saying you have been ‘financially successful’ by taking more than you need is worse than begging because to me that could be considered just as unworthy of support. Getting money from other people is not proof of deserving money, it is simply how people pay their bills. Also I am not just begging because I offer plenty of services and products in various fields. I am simply saying why I could use more income, as opposed to those who do not need more for basic living. I have many jobs, and i do them. I tend to give things away for free and make reasonable deals to work with lower income people.  I apply to better paying jobs, but I do not get them, and when i have had them before i cannot keep them for psychological reasons, one being i cannot stand authoritarian control because i desire to fight back against bosses the same as I would with any willful cruel or ignorant jackass; but when we trade self-respect for money we suppress our resentment which can fester and build to a break-down or illness.

I will not spend time defending myself by arguing against assholes, they are not worth my time. I am too expensive for them because they cannot pay me enough to work for them, and it is easy enough to block them and delete their petty comments. Their attempts to troll me are pathetic when i can shut them down easily. It is amazing that people will ‘friend’ me only to wait for chances to attack, without ever once being kind.  These are the type of people that would tell homeless street musicians to “get a job” too.

If fees are low enough with time i can advertise more without major losses on more websites; in hopes to get at least a few sales. Social reception is usually less than enthusiastic on a whole from audiences on platforms. Amazon is the best example ive had because ive been using it for years, i struggle to get a few sales a year even when i post the links and talk about them etc. I know it is not because my books are not as good as ‘Diary of a Whimpy Kid’ or ‘Captain Underpants’ which are best sellers, it has to do with commercial control of the market at the high levels. I mean sure we could argue whose art or story sucks more, but with enough exposure anti-authoritarian subversive books like ours do well with children and ne’er-do-wellz, which are a large portion of the population.

Ironically most of the people who buy my books are part of the vanishing middle class; not the lowest or the highest earning. There are more lower middle class people so they do buy more books, compared to the few upper middle class people who are interested in my books. I have had people with large incomes talk with me for hours, and i gave them books and they still did not buy any, so spending money has more to do with personalities than wealth; which is why those with less wealth will spend more if they have an income, which creates financial flow and opportunities in an economy.

All of these opinions of observations are reasons why many of us are not satisfied with status-quo commercial politics. We want more leaders like Bernie Sanders and progressives on the right or left who can be held to account by their voters who are also the majority of their campaign financing. We cannot afford allowing corporate sell-outs to further rig our own economy, environment, and country against us.

[ see also Lucas Chancel, World Inequality Lab ]

 

Online Musical Appreciation

Posted in Cooperative collaboration, Crafts, Creativity / Imagination, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Ethics & Morals, Multimedia Communication, POB Audio, Recommendations & Tributes, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 27, 2019 by Drogo

I do not know why comments on my Soundcloud account are supportive, and comments on Audiomack tend to be lame, but that is the difference in the platform community i guess. Hopefully more creative and kind collaborators will join Audiomack, so competitive jerks can get pushed off. Most serious good musicians know how to treat other players regardless of talent, but like any other genre extreme fans (or those without fans of their own) get nasty because as consumers they want to be expert judges on ‘what is good and what is bad’. When people call your original creation (which is always a collage blend of influences to various degrees) bad, let us hope for the sake of humanity that someone else finds something good about you; because art is personal expression.

I am not a professional musician because i do not get paid, although i frequently practice aka play. That being said I think we can cheer on our favorites, without being terrible people to those who we do not like as much. Maturity takes time, and not everyone will be able to respect the feelings of others as much as we might like; but know I have improved from the days when I attacked everything I did not like by insulting people who did like those things. Now I try to limit my aggression to the most important issues, and only occasionally give my opinions about silly stuff like pop music.

As Kyle Kulinski says uncensored comments can be as democratic as a bathroom wall. I encourage anyone who likes things to please rate and comment, because the assholes seem more motivated sometimes. Part of the problem seems to be with consumers not realizing that they have been conditioned by commercials to only consider popular brand names to be “quality”. We need to retrain society to invest in itself more.

Online appreciation of music is of course related to other arts and digital media. We have similar cultural problems regarding the support of authors and artists. Many of us desire to value human lives more than we have; and one way is through online appreciation and support for others in whatever ways we can.

 

 

PBS & NPR Corporate Funding

Posted in Commercial Corporations, Crafts, Creativity / Imagination, Ethics & Morals, Multimedia Communication, news, POB Audio, POB Video, Politics, Services, Sales or Trade, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 16, 2019 by Drogo

Corporate Propaganda Influence on ‘PUBLIC’ Broadcasting

PBS is routinely threatened with significant budget cuts by Republican U.S. Congress attacks. Republicans oppose government public funding for broadcasting in favor of capitalist commercial corporate crony ownership over content. The right-wing war against journalism and documentaries labels them as ‘left-wing’ is because of their fear of public opinion. Most people (see the history of unions) have concerns that go against the grain of corporate power and pollution, so it is in corporate ownership’s interest to reduce democracy in favor of plutocracy. Environmental and peace programs threaten corporate profits, and both corporate-run neo-lib-con parties of our 2-party system will not tolerate sharing their national wealth hoarding in favor of resource desecration. [See Climate Change & Current Extinction Rate

Some members of PBS self-audit and comment on the problem of increasing corporate influence. PBS ombudsman Michael Getler reported “on what seems to be ethical compromises in funding arrangements, and lack of real transparency for viewers caused, in part, by the complicated funding demands needed to support public broadcasting.”

The LA Times reported on the billionaire John D. Arnold production of ‘Pension Peril’, which blamed pensions for California state economic losses. “In another such case, a PBS unit that funded independent documentaries canceled a film about the Koch Brothers last year, fearing the reaction of one of its major donors, David Koch. That underscores the cynicism of the steady withdrawal of public funding from PBS since the Reagan administration. It’s another example of the old story of big government getting off the horse, so big business and the wealthy can saddle up.”

Salon article headlines by David Sirota read “When did PBS become the Plutocratic Broadcasting Service? Proof our public media is doomed: Former Enron trader John Arnold is using the network to wage his war on pensions. Our most prominent public media outlets are becoming instruments for special interests to launder their ideological agenda through a seemingly objective brand. Starved for public resources, these outlets are increasingly trying to get their programming funded with money from corporations and wealthy political activists – and that kind of cash comes with ideological expectations. It doesn’t have to be this way. To preserve some modicum of independent journalism, Congress could simply provide the same amount of resources for public media as other advanced democracies do. Congress could then bar PBS from accepting corporate and special interest funding.”

According to Wikipedia – The following corporations have funded PBS programs: Exxon Mobil; Liberty Mutual ; Suburu ; Canon Inc.; Chevron ; Bank of America Corp.; Intel ; Monsanto ; Toyota ; Merrill Lynch ; General Motors Corporation (GM); Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad; GlaxoSmithKline ; British Petroleum (BP); Merck ; Pfizer Inc; Siemens AG; Dow Chemical Company; McDonald’s ; Columbia Forest Products…

A Truth-Out article titled ‘The Corporate Dictatorship of PBS and NPR’ reads, “On November 7, 1967, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Public Broadcasting Act. The act set up public broadcasting in the United States, by establishing the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which led to the creation of the Public Broadcasting Service, or PBS, and National Public Radio.”

The Public Broadcasting Act of 1967 states – “It is in the public interest to encourage the growth and development of public radio and television broadcasting, including the use of such media for instructional, educational, and cultural purposes… it is necessary and appropriate for the Federal Government to complement, assist, and support a national policy that will most effectively make public telecommunications services available to all citizens of the United States.”

The original purpose even as stated by President Johnson was that ‘we the people’ declare that we want more than just material wealth; we want spiritual, ethical, or environmental quality of life. Reaganomic’s ‘trickle-down’ ideology slashed funding accountability since the 1980’s political deregulations for corporate oligarchy. Public broadcasting institutions now rely more and more on corporate and billionaire cash to operate, which is why PBS and NPR now filter what they play on their airwaves, so that they don’t anger their wealthy backers.

“David Koch has donated upwards of $23 million to public television. And when you donate $23 million dollars to public television, you get more than just a tote bag or a coffee mug – you get to dictate the on-air programming.” – Jane Mayer of the New Yorker

Regarding the PBS & NPR budget diagrams below, i doubt the overall budgets reflect the funding by corporations TO MAKE all the programs. They may only show the purchasing and distribution funding within PBS and NPR, not the corporate manufacturing money invested into the products they then purchase and distribute. Also “Individuals” may include plutocrats who donate large sums on behalf of their companies, as there is no evidence of a cap on individual member donations.

 

 

*

Are You Better Than Me? WOC

Posted in POB Audio, Poems, Poems, Rhymes, Riddles, Psychology, Song Lyrics & Analysis, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2019 by Drogo

World of Competition, are you better than me?

Are you smarter? 

Are better looking? 

Do you sound better?

Are you better smelling?

Are you better skilled at life?

Do you deserve to procreate, while I just masturbate?

Were you born to win and me to lose??

Are you taller, bigger, and stronger???

Are you smaller, thinner, and faster???

 

This is the World of Competition,

Where we compete to be better than the other.

Your rank on the bloody charts of success,

Will tell us all who is better than the rest.

 

You stare at me and then dismiss me,

As being lesser than yourself

You don’t want to advance me,

At the cost of your own profit.

The price of your winning is my loss.

 

There ain’t no room for cooperation,

We cannot collaborate when the rules will not allow.

There can be no equality, when rates are based on quality.

Can you assess my monetary worth?

How much is my fucking soul after birth?

 

In this world you are either taking or giving,

If you are not good enough to take what is yours,

Then you must give what others have earned.

Or are you better because you give?

Either way, one of us is better.

 

Are you better at History?

Are you better at Math?

Are you better at Languages?

Do you spell like a mother-fucker?

Are you better at the Sciences?

Are you better at the Arts? 

 

Are you nicer?

Are you more sane?

Are you wealthier?

Can you buy and sell me?

 

Have you rigged the fight before we even begin?

What will you charge to allow me to win?

It ain’t no false dichotomy

Are you better than me?

BETTER THAN ME!!!!

*

[ Audio Recording – Song Version ]

*

Notes about this project lyric poetry and music style: my influences are Helmet, Biohazard, Faith No More, Hawkwind, Savatage, Bad Brains and other DC punk bands… the lyrics are about existentialist angst regarding social pressure to compete… it is about the human problem of wanting to compare things as dualities, instead of the more organic magic mushroom holistic view. the poem came to me in the morning, and i had to make the song to express the inner rage of individuals in society. it took me about an hour, but it might be one of my best songs because i was finally able to capture the problems between individuality and collective, and capitalist vs communist. also our attempts at trying to rate intelligence, skill, beauty. Special thanks the Judas Priest Cover band. I used my cell phone and 3 tracks on Soundtrap.

Clouds Are Real

Posted in POB Audio, Poems, Poems, Rhymes, Riddles, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2019 by Drogo

mega cloud 2bmega cloud 1cmega cloud 1a

We swim in oceans of emotions, and we sail in relation-ships;

no more voting for corporate pricks;

we think and feel, and vote for those with appeal;

because clouds are real, clouds are real, yeah clouds are real.

*

[ Audio recording of poem sung as a folk song ]

 

 

*

GND Tree Planting Plans

Posted in jobs, Organic Development, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2019 by Drogo

Thousands of forest acres have been lost in most counties nationwide in recent decades. The Green New Deal (GND) will replant trees. Currently in Frederick County there are local groups replanting 55 acres, to replace the 420 lost every year, but it is not enough. Bernie’s GND has several national strategies which would plant more.

1. Adding 20 million new jobs to Public Land Corps, CCC, & ACE

The Public Land Corps (PLC) is a work and education program for young people that is run by the United States land management agencies in association with state conservation and service corps. The objective is the rehabilitation and restoration of public land resources and infrastructure.

American Conservation Experience (ACE) has emerged as a national leader in recruiting, coordinating, and training volunteers to undertake practical environmental restoration projects in America’s national parks, forests, wildlife refuges and other public lands.

The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was a voluntary public work relief program that operated from 1933 to 1942 in the United States for unemployed, unmarried men ages 17–28, as part of FDR’s New Deal. The CCC built heavy engineering projects for National and State parks, often using large stone masonry.

2. Supporting small family farms through RRA. Organic homestead farms have more trees and wildlife per acre than corporate farms because they are more ecological than profit driven, due to self interest and practicality. Small farms are more interested in sustaining communities and wildlife, and large farms are more interested in clearing land for increasing crop production profit, without needing to conserve natural resources for other uses.

3. Adding $40 billion to the CJRF. The Climate Justice Resilience Fund is a grant-making initiative dedicated to helping women, youth, and indigenous peoples create and share their own solutions for resilience. CJRF seeks to foster climate-resilient land management by communities; including agricultural practices, protecting public land and resource rights, and ensuring sustained access to wild foods.

4. Adding $200 billion to the eastern UN GCF. The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is a fund established within the framework of the UN-CCC as an operating entity of the Financial Mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change. The GCF is based in Incheon, South Korea. Currently humanitarians and environmentalists warn that the deal is not sufficient in its current scope.

17426376_720109201483053_6778728775829473425_n

 

 

 

 

 

Pokeberry Plant

Posted in Crafts, Food & Drink, Nature Studies, Organic Gardens, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2019 by Drogo

Pokeberry plant leaves are edible when young, but most toxic when mature (like rhubarb). Many people are allergic to the toxins so all parts of the plant are poisonous to them. The roots are the most toxic. The leaves are edible when young after being boiled 3x in water changes, or for those of us not allergic to poke frying in oil or butter is fine. Documented cases are common for people allergic to poke, but there are people like me who have been around poke their whole lives, handled the plants often, and squished the berries for stain and ink without any problems beyond our skin getting stained crimson for a day or two. I have heard of someone getting a skin rash from poke (like poison ivy), as they are allergic to touching it; but I am not. My mother had us paint and print with poke berry ink on water-color paper as children, with no problems.

Poke berries are not edible, but when used with vinegar and salt (and other blends) can make ink for writing pens and printing on paper. Pokeberry ink is not archival because it fades over time on paper, even when not exposed to sunlight everyday. However pokeberry ink is a interesting local organic native alternative to industrial toxic inks, but modern use is still experimental although the chemicals in it are known. In gardens they are beautiful in full maturity, with their ornate ‘goblin’ fruits.

“Indians and early settlers used the root in poultices and certain drugs for skin diseases and rheumatism.” – Michael Owen, ISU

The late 19th century herbal, the ‘King’s American Dispensatory’, describes various folk medical uses that led individuals to ingest pokeberry products. Modern commercial medical companies (big pharma) snubs remedies that are found commonly, for obvious pharmaceutical sales reasons, and so serious testing might be hard to study at length with funding for the purposes of common good, for free but cautious home use.

CAUTION:  Many people are allergic to poke toxins, so limit your exposure to the plant to reduce possible effects. There are many medical claims that eating poke roots, berries, or anything from the adult plant can kill in sufficient quantities.

Other articles: ‘Making Pokeweed Ink‘; ‘Pokeberry Ink‘;

For safer printing for all people, perhaps black-berries or mul-berries or huckle-berries are better? For long-term organic industrial printing, using a weed like poke which is not used for human food would make more sense for sustainability though. [Link Process for making any type of berry ink]

[photo from Wikipedia]

Phytolacca_pokeberries