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647801 Posts in 25914 Topics by 3699 Members - Latest Member: BigRed June 24, 2019, 11:03:46 PM
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1  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike Comments on Czechoslovakia at the Lucerna Great Hall in Prague on: June 20, 2019, 04:32:38 PM
Thank you Stephen for that fascinating info! What a great way to avoid the money regulations...ingenious!

Not to be political, but this chapter of the band's history and the people who came to see them play should stand as a prime example of what communism really was...whenever someone starts extolling the joys and benefits of communist living. Talk to those who lived under communism and behind the iron curtain and you'll hear how it really was. Kudos to the Boys for playing this historic and important show.

No thanks - no sale.  Grin  Not gonna get into it here.

Ha! Hey, I wouldn't be me if I didn't do that. Nevertheless I can't resist linking to this:

2  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike Comments on Czechoslovakia at the Lucerna Great Hall in Prague on: June 19, 2019, 04:15:59 PM
Thank you Stephen for that fascinating info! What a great way to avoid the money regulations...ingenious!

Not to be political, but this chapter of the band's history and the people who came to see them play should stand as a prime example of what communism really was...whenever someone starts extolling the joys and benefits of communist living. Talk to those who lived under communism and behind the iron curtain and you'll hear how it really was. Kudos to the Boys for playing this historic and important show.
3  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: New Politics Thread 2018 on: June 19, 2019, 06:30:52 AM
There's a great article just published a couple of days ago in New York magazine. I will paste below but here are a few highlights:

Some Democratic presidential candidates say that America’s economic system is badly broken and in need of sweeping, structural change. Others say that the existing order is fundamentally sound, even if it could use a few modest renovations. The former are widely portrayed as ideologues or extremists, the latter as moderates.

And it’s certainly true that Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are ideologically “extreme,” if our baseline is the median member of Congress or the median policy agenda pursued by recent American presidents. But it’s not clear why these would be the appropriate metrics.

In 2011, Michael Norton of Harvard Business School and Dan Ariely of Duke University published a study on Americans’ views of how wealth was distributed in their society, and how they felt it should be distributed. They found that, in the average American’s ideal world, the richest 20 percent would own 32 percent of national wealth. In reality, the top quintile owned 84 percent as of 2011. And that share has grown in the intervening years. Today, the one percent alone commands roughly 40 percent of all America’s wealth.

Given all this, any politician who insists that American capitalism is “already great” is clearly a far-right extremist whose indifference to inequality puts him or her wildly out of step with ordinary people. But is it the case that Warren and Sanders would take things too far in the other direction?

Not remotely. I do not have the relevant data or skills to project precisely how the full implementation of either candidate’s agenda would influence America’s wealth distribution. But neither candidate is calling for a series of reforms that would place the United States far outside the Western European norm. In fact, both Warren and Sanders have cribbed their signature policies from European nations. As the 2018 World Inequality Report demonstrated, policy choices do matter — and income inequality is much lower in Western Europe than it is in the U.S.
4  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: New Politics Thread 2018 on: June 18, 2019, 05:55:01 PM
 Each of us constructs his own reality yet I am fairly certain that Sanders will never be elected President or nominated for President.

  I'm not really a supporter of establishment Democrats, just a relatively objective observer.

  The interesting thing was that in 2016 both parties were nearly usurped by candidates from outside the party. It fascinated me that the Republicans fell and the Democrats held. Then again, the GOP didn't invest in a coronation or construct a wall of super delegates (i.e. party hacks) to protect the "inevitable" favorite. If they hadn't, we may have seen an open convention.

 The context is different in 2020 - it's a crowded field. Bernie, 78 this year, is one of many.

 BTW - Supporting allowing convicted felons to vote WHILE IN PRISON is a losing issue. One of several embraced by Bernie Sanders.

 Vote for BILL WELD in 2020

I should re-state that I don't know for sure myself if Sanders will ever be elected President or nominated for President because his obstacle - the Democratic neoliberal establishment, has done and is continuing to do everything possible to thwart his chances. However, the reason why Sanders wouldn't be nominated nor elected has nothing to do with the population, as Sanders is an enormously popular political candidate whose views generally align with the views of the majority of Americans.

The fact that you pick out one of the issues where he does not align with the population is not particularly convincing. Most polls show that the American population has been far to the left of all US presidents for decades and generally disagree with most of the policies that emanate from the White House. Take, for example, health care. While the numbers do vary, poll after poll for decades now have shown the majority of the US population to be in favour of a single-payer healthcare system, which is remarkable since no US president has ever advocated such a position. Now healthcare is a much more significant topic for people than whether or not prisoners get to vote - healthcare is something that deeply affects people, often on a day-to-day basis. I hardly think this one issue would tank Bernie, when one considers that Presidents get elected all the time on platforms that the majority of Americans disagree with.
5  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: New Politics Thread 2018 on: June 18, 2019, 05:13:23 AM
 Ultimately free tuition would never be free and within 30 years the value of a public university education - both monetary and intrinsic - would be degraded.

  Nominating Bernie Sanders would be a gift to Donald Trump. Look elsewhere, please.


It is quite staggering how supporters of establishment Democrats are not just out of touch with reality, they believe the opposite of reality to be the truth. Let's not forget what the gift to Donald Trump was in 2016: ignoring the most comprehensive analysis of the polls that showed that Sanders had a better chance of beating Trump than Clinton, using nefarious tricks to undermine Sanders, and putting forth another neoliberal establishment politician. If there was an actual gift to Donald Trump, it was that.

Given that you entirely ignored the facts that I brought up in my previous post and just merely repeated what you said before, I will assume that you are uninterested in engaging with these topics.
6  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: New Politics Thread 2018 on: June 17, 2019, 05:44:52 AM
Again, I'll repeat: polls showed after the election that Sanders was the most popular politician in America:

Furthermore, a comprehensive analysis of the polls before the election showed that Sanders had a better chance of beating Trump than Clinton did:

The idea that America can't elect someone who self-identifies as a socialist may have been true at one point but it's not the 1950s anymore. You have generations of people who were not raised on Red Scare tactics and these numbers are only growing. So the lastest polls show that Democrats have a more positive view of socialism than capitalism:

And, in fact, these numbers are a bit misleading because they don't quite demonstrate whether or not Americans are in favour of the principles that lay behind either ideological system. In reality, most polls show then when asked specific questions, Americans are very much in favour of a more socialist-style system. In fact, Americans so unconsciously attach the tenets of socialism to the American way that a poll taken in the 80s found that "Nearly half believed that the Constitution contains Karl Marx's phrase 'From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.'" So, as far as I'm concerned, the US population is not only becoming much more receptive to socialism, they've always implicitly and unknowningly agreed with its principles. This perhaps explains Sanders's stunning popularity in 2016 - he was simply saying things that Americans had always believed in.

As for education, the fact is that most of the industrialized free world has free tuition. Like for many things, the United States is more the exception than the rule in this regard. So, you have to ask, has the overall quality of education been devalued in, say, Germany or Sweden? Of course not. They are well-known for having some of the best education systems (including post-secondary education systems) in the world. So if that's the case, why do people believe that the education system in the US would suffer in a way that others haven't? The answer is easy: it's a propagandistic scare tactic which serves to bolster the status quo.

I'm happy to have this conversation but I would like a bit of honesty here. Instead of saying Sanders can't get elected and free tuition wouldn't work, could you at least say what is true, that you don't want Sanders elected and you don't want free tuition for students.
7  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: New Politics Thread 2018 on: June 16, 2019, 11:42:52 AM
With the talk increasing about the Democratic nominee for 2020, I really do hope that Sanders makes a run for it and does not get squeezed out the way he was in 2016. I also really hope that Joe Biden does not run.

 Biden may be ancient, but he is electable. Sanders is not. Don't be surprised if he ends up behind not only Biden but also Warren and Buttigeig.

 Bill Weld may have a snowball's chance in hell, but he'd make a credible president in my view. Kudos to Weld for challenging Trump in the GOP primaries.

I really have no patience with this argument anymore. This was the same thing that I heard in 2016 about Clinton and Sanders. The fact of the matter is is that Biden, like Clinton, represents precisely the sort of status quo establishment politician that the country has now demonstrated that they are fed up with and for quite a good reason: since the 1970s, we have seen labour productivity go up and we have seen wages for the majority of the population stagnate. Meanwhile, the wealth for the extraordinarily slim minority have escalated dramatically, mostly off the backs of all that labour that have watched as they are kept from the fruits of their labour.

And the public isn't stupid. They know who is responsible - it is the establishment leaders, of which Clinton and Biden are both dutiful, if not slavish, representatives. Now I'm not saying here that Biden can't win but I do think that the best hope that Biden does have of winning is that the population has become so bothered by Trump that they will vote for anybody that the Democrats put forth. The problem is though that while the Democrats could have spent the last two and half years putting together a really solid opposition to Trump by calling out the huge list of awful policies he has enacted, they instead decided to pursue an argument that was about as rational as the 9/11-is-an-inside-job conspiracy theory, namely that he colluded with Russia to win the 2016 election.

Now even before the Mueller Report came out, many prominent figures on the left, like Noam Chomsky, Glenn Greenwald, Matt Taibbi, Aaron Mate, Chris Hedges and others were warning that this was a terrible tactic and certainly didn't deserve the kind of attention it was getting. But of course the Democrats were not about to argue against Trump on a matter of policy for two main reasons - their own policies have been by and large bad for most Americans and they don't differ that dramatically from Trump's. So of course they're going to go after a bogey-man. But it had two effects: for one, the public never cared about the Russian issue as much as establishment Democrats did, so they were simply showing themselves to be dramatically out-of-touch with the needs of the population. And second, it turned out, they were wrong, and so whoever was invested in the issue basically saw that their single-issue turned out to be an empty pursuit.

So the Democrats have by and large mostly been working for the past two years to serve up a big gift to Trump. Biden, of course, has good numbers - he was a Vice President. He's a well-known face and brand. But when people find out that he represents the policies that have largely worked to disenfranchise them for decades, he's going to have a big hill to climb. Again, I'm not saying it's impossible, but it's certainly not going to be easy.

But Clinton had the same hill to climb in 2016 and Sanders didn't. This is why, as Glenn Greenwald pointed out months before the November election, the statistics pointed to the fact that Sanders had more of a chance of beating Trump than Clinton did. But, of course, Sanders's biggest problem has never been electability. His biggest obstacle as always been establishment Democrats who have made it perfectly clear that they will go to the lowest depths possible and carry out the most nefarious, sneaky, and petty acts in order to undermine the person who polls show was the most popular political figure in the country for several years in a row. To be fair to Sanders, though, they have pulled the same trick with similarly left-wing candidates so it’s not just him – they are simply looking to protect their establishment, neoliberal interests at all costs. And, yes, there is some evidence now that it has worked and this is once again a replay of 2016. Again, while Greenwald did one of the most comprehensive studies of polls in, I believe it was March of 2016, it was almost universally ignored by the mainstream media who made a Clinton victory look like a slam dunk. You will excuse me, though, if I find this similar replay of that strategy now to be not only distasteful but also potentially a good strategy to get Trump re-elected.

That said, I do like Elizabeth Warren and she is different enough to maybe be more of a contender than Biden. But the fact is she has her own hurdles to overcome. The fact that she was a registered Republican up until the 90s, and still maintains that the problem was that they lost their way (her words were that the Republican party was no longer "principled in its conservative approach to economics and to markets"). Huh? So when were they principled? Was Reagan okay then? She still ardently supports capitalism, and favours small reforms. This will not play that well to a population who seems to be craving massive change at the political level. Natalie Shure recently pointed out the following: “theory of political change is perhaps the biggest difference between Sanders and Warren - he is trying to harness grassroots power; she is leading with sharp policy. Both of those things are critical ingredients for change, but the movement has to happen first.”

Indeed, there has been perhaps no leftist figure since the 1960s who has been as influential as Sanders has been in provoking massive, grassroots organization. One of the reasons why Sanders has succeeded where people like Ralph Nader failed, is that Nader was not willing to do the important groundwork – that which makes change truly possible. As Shure points out, Warren hasn’t done this kind of work either and this is precisely the kind of thing that would cost her an election too.

So, ultimately, I do not find your argument convincing. And if I'm being honest, I actually find it quite dangerous.
8  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brians caring personality on: May 24, 2019, 06:48:53 PM
It always struck me that during the campfire film, Brian was the first person who was concerned that a child was about to walk into the fire.
Star Trek V?  Grin

 LOL It is quite possible they all sang Row, Row, Row Your Boat at one point.
9  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brians caring personality on: May 23, 2019, 05:29:10 AM
It always struck me that during the campfire film, Brian was the first person who was concerned that a child was about to walk into the fire.
10  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian Wilson Corvette For Sale on: April 29, 2019, 08:14:41 PM
It’s weird that his name is on the door with the Beach Boys name beneath it, seemingly placed there at the height of his fractured relationship with the band.
11  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / Smiley Smilers Who Make Music / Re: New Music on: April 26, 2019, 08:06:00 AM
Here's another single from my album. Just a brief note: the song is called Summer's Gone and it is one of the more Beach Boys-y sounding tracks of mine. However, you have to believe that I did write this song BEFORE the Summer's Gone that appeared on That's Why God Made the Radio (which I can even prove with a dated Youtube video of me demoing it). At any rate, I hope you enjoy it:

And also, if you are interested in hearing the whole album, you can listen to it here:
12  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Echo in the Canyon (New documentary w/ Brian interview) on: April 06, 2019, 12:21:41 PM
Can anyone identify what album they are holding at 1:55?

EDIT: I have discovered it - Last Time Around by Buffalo Springfield
13  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: Help Identifying a Song on: April 03, 2019, 06:41:59 AM
Ok, now I need help identifying a song. This description is VERY vague though. I don't really expect anybody to be able to figure it out. This is a song that I heard only once, about ten or so years ago. It was a slow, piano based balled. I think it was a song that was from the mid to late 1950's at the latest, but more likely dating from the late 1940's to early 1950's. The one distinctive thing I can remember is the saxophone. To this day, I have never heard a saxophone that sounds like the one I heard in this song. At first, I thought it was an electric guitar. It was highly distorted, and downright mean sounding. That's the best way I can describe it. It was actually kind of shocking to hear, because before the sax came in, it was a fairly quiet, slow bluesy song that was mainly piano based. Told you I was going to be vague about it.  Grin Does this sound familiar to anybody?

Again a shot in the dark, but what about Angel Baby by Rosie and the Originals:
14  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: What are you watching now?/Favourite Movie of the Moment on: March 23, 2019, 09:05:19 AM
Had seen the trailer for Toy Story 4 a couple of days ago. The buzz on the internet is that the song played during the second half of it is none other than GOK.
Spent last night reading various posts about it.

The "cheezburger" site summed it up well:
 "Twitter's on a well-warranted Feels Trip right now thanks to Toy Story 4. How about a kind warning next time? Apparently you can add the Beach Boys love song, 'God Only Knows,' cue into just about anything , and emotions, weeping, tears will arise. The reactions from Twitter users who are deep in their feels is entertaining at least."

I've only seen the first Toy Story movie. Are the other ones just as good?

In my opinion, the second and third are better than the first, which is extraordinarily rare in cinema. Just looking at the trailer for #4 though, I think the new one looks terrible, doing what the other ones have avoided in replicating old story lines.
15  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Incident on: March 22, 2019, 03:57:01 AM
This will tell you all you need to know:,6867.msg110359.html#msg110359
16  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: R. I. P. Dick Dale on: March 17, 2019, 02:25:35 PM
And you'll never hear surf music again.

RIP Dick Dale
17  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Personal sh*t and beach boys (a little) on: March 14, 2019, 04:40:06 AM
This is terrible to hear, Emily. I'm so sorry for everything you and your family are going through. It is good to have an outlet to discuss these things, as you say. Please feel free to continue "dumping" information here if you want.
18  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Hal Blaine on: March 12, 2019, 04:04:17 AM
RIP Hal. You provided the beat for the 60s.
19  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Weirdest Photos Of Mike Love You Can Find on: March 06, 2019, 10:16:19 AM

Dining Companion: Mike, be careful. Later, you might regret eating so much.

Mike: My only deep personal regrets about eating are about how much my cousins ate.
20  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Rocky Pamplin's THE BEACH BOYS' ENDLESS WAVE completed and published on: February 21, 2019, 10:13:32 AM
If someone wants to see the band that has been continuously on the road for 5 decades, it's because of Mike Love. There, I've proved you wrong.

But surely there is a difference between saying that "Because of Mike Love, people have been able to see the band for five decades" vs. saying "Because of Mike Love, people have wanted to see the band for five decades." Do you not see a distinction there?
21  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: Peter Tork died! on: February 21, 2019, 09:57:48 AM
Yes, I had listened to Micky on Gilbert Gottfried's podcast and his tone when discussing Peter made me thing that something was definitely going on.

Love The Monkees - Peter was a valuable part of the team, both on the TV show and when they started to active record their own music.
22  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Rare stuff on Brian's instagram on: February 20, 2019, 07:41:23 AM
Was there something going on with this song where if you mailed Brian a special request, he'd personalize a version for you?
23  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: The Beatles on: February 20, 2019, 07:38:10 AM
"Yesterday, everyone knew The Beatles. Today, only Jack remembers their songs. He’s about to become a very big deal. From Academy Award®-winning director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting, 28 Days Later) and Richard Curtis, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Four Weddings and a Funeral, Love Actually and Notting Hill, comes a rock-n-roll comedy about music, dreams, friendship, and the long and winding road that leads to the love of your life."

It's an interesting concept - and I'm immediately more interested than I was in the Across The Universe travesty.

That said, with Richard Curtis as the writer, I don't have high hopes. He's ... fine but also remarkably shmaltzy and very middle-of-the-road. I know he's a big Beatles fan but he's also become a so-so screenwriter. As a massive Beatles fan myself, I will see it, but I don't think it'll end up being a huge favourite.
24  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / Smiley Smilers Who Make Music / Re: New Music on: February 15, 2019, 06:52:24 AM
My album is officially ready. If you get a chance, please give it a listen and let me know your thoughts. Thanks!
25  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 13, 2019, 01:14:57 PM
I don't think HT&E/YSBIM is anywhere near the case of "My Sweet Lord"/"He's So Fine". In the case of the latter, you have the same exact three-note melody being sung over essentially the same two-chord motif (and there are further similarities as well).

Yes. In fact, if I may be so bold, I agree with Lennon that Harrison's use of He's So Fine was not subconscious at all but quite intentional.

Yeah, I think it was a court that invoked the odd term "subconscious plagiarism" in that case.

I don't think Harrison set out to write a remake of "He's So Fine", so I suppose one could argue it was partially unintended. I think he had the influence in the back of his head, and there's a point at which if you riff exactly on the same melody line on top of the same chord sequence, it doesn't matter whether it was intentional or not.

I suppose the "Stay With Me/I Won't Back Down" situation from a few years ago was somewhat similar. The "Stay With Me" writers all claimed they had never heard "I Won't Back Down" (which seems far-fetched to me; or indicative of a pretty narrow breadth of knowledge of not-ancient pop music), but I have no problem believing that they didn't sit down intending to write a remake of "I Won't Back Down", or to sample that song. But again, same melody over the same chord sequence, so it doesn't matter.

The closest I can think of that the Beach Boys and Beatles ever came to "ripping" each others' song off would probably be "Girl Don't Tell Me", and even then it's not similar enough to warrant any songwriting credit changes. It's like a really good Rutles song.

This is all a matter of guessing, of course, but I think that George was even more intentional than that. It wouldn't have been the only time - the riff of If I Needed Someone is outright taken from The Byrds' Bells of Rhymney. Lyrics from The Inner Light and All Things Must Pass are pretty much word-for-word taken from other sources and uncredited. I don't criticize Harrison for this incidentally - and furthermore his hero Bob Dylan did this constantly, and still does.
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