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Jesus and Hitler Were Framed

Jesus Was Framed – Alex Harvey, Redding Festival 1977

(to the tune of Framed by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller)

I was just a carpenter, giving a sermon on the mount
My mother was a virgin, we was giving kisses out
Then two soldiers grabbed me, they said jesus is your name
There’s lots of trouble going around and you are the one to blame
 

But I was framed … I never did nothing …

 
They came to me with leprosy, the lame, the blind the sick
I put my arms on them all but miracles don’t come quick
I even walked upon the water, but Pilate helped thxx jail
But now the robbers, xthepervertsh, they allrotdf with me kn hell
 

But I was framed …

 
~~Organ interlude!
 
Framed, framed, framed, framed, I was framed ….
I never did nothin, do you believe me? I was framed
 

Hitler Was Framed – Alex Harvey, 1976

(to the tune of Framed by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller)

I was marching down the strasse, minding my own affairs
When two storm troopers grabbed me, and I was unaware
Zey said is your name Adolph, and I said why sure
Zey said, you’re the kind of a fuhrer that we’ve been looking for
 

But I was frameda … I never did nothing …

 
So I took them to the gas chambers, where the bright light shined
There was Herman, and there was Goebbels and the SS and me and we stood in a big long line
I knew I had invented some kind of master plan
When they all looked at me and they said, that’s your man!
 

But I was framed … I neffer did nothing

~~odd interlude

 
Zen ze bastards bombed me, down in old Berlin
My little sweetheart Eva she said the fun would just begin
When they burned my balls in petrol, criticized my name
But just be careful baby, because you might come back again.
 

I was framed … do you believe me

asklxzzloudgermanishgibberishajsd flkajsdf!!!
You will all be imprisoned for this.
I was frameddddd…..

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band was a Scottish rock band in the 70’s that was known for, among other things, doing a great rendition of Framed. The above are my best shot at transcribing alternate lyrics Alex used. Very funny stuff – seek out the live bootlegs from the 1977 at Redding and 1976 in Leicester.

Audiophile Manifesto

Manifesto is still a strong word. I’m not trying to start a movement! But this is an audiophile position statement. Hopefully it will be informative and entertaining.

I have been an audiophile since I was born. No ifs, ands, or buts. It started with the first things I heard as a child, played though tube amps and big (but not really all that great) bass reflex speakers. After that I was exposed to transistorized hi-fi amps (as well as DDT and nuclear fallout) at an early age (I survived). There certainly has been a maturation process. 53 years of it. Some periods in this process could be criticized – when I bought my first CD player, or when I bought my Bose AM5’s. Or even when I bought the JBL’s for my recording studio. But as a true audiophile, I soon realized that what I had needed better sound, so I continued to try to improve things and I haven’t stopped.
Manifestos are always absurdly long and wordy, aren’t they. That isn’t my style. Maybe I need to find a new word to describe this post or else make it extremely long and wordy!
16 Bit Digital Audio is Not Good Quality
This is an evil to avoid. Very little 16 bit digital audio is tolerable through anything but crappy speakers playing at low volume. Cars, MAYBE. OK, this it’s been pretty much OK in all the cars I have owned up until now, including my sonic favorite, my 2000 Chrysler Town and Country Limited (Infinity speakers and pretty good sound dampening). Some 16 bit recordings sometimes seem to sound good, but there is just so much room for improvement that it to accept this as good.
Lossy Compression Audio is Currently Unacceptable for Musical Listening
Lossy compression is prevalent in all broadcast, cable and satellite TV content, most consumer recorded TV (except Blu-ray and some DVD’s that use PCM), all satellite and HD radio, personal media players, etc. We start to become accustomed to the sound. There could be some possibility for improvement, thus the weasel language above – “currently.” Today, though, lossy compression is not good enough for music. At best, it offends. At worst, it offends a lot.
Compressed music can be listenable. I watch lots of video with lossy-compressed audio – even the occasional music oriented video – and it is mostly tolerable. But this is not critical listening.
Solid State Amplifers Add Bad Harmonics
Fortunately, this doesn’t happen a lot until they are at or above rated power. None the less, it has led me to seek out tub amps for critical listening. There is a hardness (vs. a tube softness) that is audible at low levels. This is revelation listeners need to make with their ears. The hard vs. soft, cold vs. warm sound is the subtle criteria by which the sound of amplifiers, which one would think should be neutral, should be evaluated. Although it is a subjective trait, it is demonstrable.
Bass Reflex Enclosures Distort
Bass reflex, tuned port, folded horn, anything where a back wave of a speaker driver escapes is not ideal. The transient sound is always muddled by this additional energy. A good number of the speaker in my collection are some kind of bass reflex design. Some are better than others (some are outstanding, like my Ohm Walsh 4’s), but speakers that avoid this are the best. Musical instrument amps are mostly exempt (even though they usually suffer from this problem to an extreme). Their cabinets serve as a way to get a particular sound and make it very loud. They are instruments themselves, not sound reproducing devices.
Under Powered Solid State Amps are Very Bad
This is so easy to avoid these days. It seems like the only components manufactured for the last 20 years are fairly high powered (even cheap ones). You want a lot of head room with transistors. With tubes, under powering is also bad, but not nearly as bad.
Cables Should be Judged on Ability to Deliver Signals
If a wire and it’s connectors can carry the required current to deliver the signal as intended, it is adequate. Losses and changes from cables are a part of the circuit design. Unintended effects from cables are rare from cables made with the right materials. Designing a workable circuit and using the right materials is important to creating good sound, but one piece of 10 gauge copper with the same diameter cores, properly connected, will be as good as the next. This is also (especially?) true for digital cables (TOS link, HDMI, etc.).
Use your Ears
The best way to judge things is with the best measuring instruments you have available – your human senses. It is alarming to know how much hearing (and vision) loss we experience. Just do some high frequency hearing tests with persons younger than you and you will see. None the less, these instruments are your most valuable. Train them by concentrating on the sound. Testing sound with multiple options (A-B-C) is a great way to start. Use a variety of sources.
Newer is Not Better, Older is Not Better
There is a lot of great new gear (most of it with absurd price tags). Great stuff was also made throughout the last 50 years. What was great a long time ago could still be great. What was junk a long time ago is still junk. There are different degrees of goodness and badness and there are many amazing bargains in second hand hi-fi.

Atheist Ireland Publishes 25 Blasphemous Quotes

Atheist Ireland Publishes 25 Blasphemous Quotes

Filed under: Atheist IrelandCampaignFreedom of SpeechIs this Blasphemy?Quotes — Michael Nugent @ 12:33 am

From today, 1 January 2010, the new Irish blasphemy law becomes operational, and we begin our campaign to have it repealed. Blasphemy is now a crime punishable by a €25,000 fine. The new law defines blasphemy as publishing or uttering matter that is grossly abusive or insulting in relation to matters held sacred by any religion, thereby intentionally causing outrage among a substantial number of adherents of that religion, with some defences permitted.

This new law is both silly and dangerous. It is silly because medieval religious laws have no place in a modern secular republic, where the criminal law should protect people and not ideas. And it is dangerous because it incentives religious outrage, and because Islamic States led by Pakistan are already using the wording of this Irish law to promote new blasphemy laws at UN level.

We believe in the golden rule: that we have a right to be treated justly, and that we have a responsibility to treat other people justly. Blasphemy laws are unjust: they silence people in order to protect ideas. In a civilised society, people have a right to to express and to hear ideas about religion even if other people find those ideas to be outrageous.

Publication of 25 blasphemous quotes

In this context we now publish a list of 25 blasphemous quotes, which have previously been published by or uttered by or attributed to Jesus Christ, Muhammad, Mark Twain, Tom Lehrer, Randy Newman, James Kirkup, Monty Python, Rev Ian Paisley, Conor Cruise O’Brien, Frank Zappa, Salman Rushdie, Bjork, Amanda Donohoe, George Carlin, Paul Woodfull, Jerry Springer the Opera, Tim Minchin, Richard Dawkins, Pope Benedict XVI, Christopher Hitchens, PZ Myers, Ian O’Doherty, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor and Dermot Ahern.

Despite these quotes being abusive and insulting in relation to matters held sacred by various religions, we unreservedly support the right of these people to have published or uttered them, and we unreservedly support the right of any Irish citizen to make comparable statements about matters held sacred by any religion without fear of being criminalised, and without having to prove to a court that a reasonable person would find any particular value in the statement.

Campaign begins to repeal the Irish blasphemy law

We ask Fianna Fail and the Green Party to repeal their anachronistic blasphemy law, as part of the revision of the Defamation Act that is included within the Act. We ask them to hold a referendum to remove the reference to blasphemy from the Irish Constitution.

We also ask all TDs and Senators to support a referendum to remove references to God from the Irish Constitution, including the clauses that prevent atheists from being appointed as President of Ireland or as a Judge without swearing a religious oath asking God to direct them in their work.

If you run a website, blog or other media publication, please feel free to republish this statement and the list of quotes yourself, in order to show your support for the campaign to repeal the Irish blasphemy law and to promote a rational, ethical, secular Ireland.

List of 25 Blasphemous Quotes Published by Atheist Ireland

1. Jesus Christ, when asked if he was the son of God, in Matthew 26:64: “Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.” According to the Christian Bible, the Jewish chief priests and elders and council deemed this statement by Jesus to be blasphemous, and they sentenced Jesus to death for saying it.

2. Jesus Christ, talking to Jews about their God, in John 8:44: “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him.” This is one of several chapters in the Christian Bible that can give a scriptural foundation to Christian anti-Semitism. The first part of John 8, the story of “whoever is without sin cast the first stone”, was not in the original version, but was added centuries later. The original John 8 is a debate between Jesus and some Jews. In brief, Jesus calls the Jews who disbelieve him sons of the Devil, the Jews try to stone him, and Jesus runs away and hides.

3. Muhammad, quoted in Hadith of Bukhari, Vol 1 Book 8 Hadith 427: “May Allah curse the Jews and Christians for they built the places of worship at the graves of their prophets.” This quote is attributed to Muhammad on his death-bed as a warning to Muslims not to copy this practice of the Jews and Christians. It is one of several passages in the Koran and in Hadith that can give a scriptural foundation to Islamic anti-Semitism, including the assertion in Sura 5:60 that Allah cursed Jews and turned some of them into apes and swine.

4. Mark Twain, describing the Christian Bible in Letters from the Earth, 1909: “Also it has another name – The Word of God. For the Christian thinks every word of it was dictated by God. It is full of interest. It has noble poetry in it; and some clever fables; and some blood-drenched history; and some good morals; and a wealth of obscenity; and upwards of a thousand lies… But you notice that when the Lord God of Heaven and Earth, adored Father of Man, goes to war, there is no limit. He is totally without mercy – he, who is called the Fountain of Mercy. He slays, slays, slays! All the men, all the beasts, all the boys, all the babies; also all the women and all the girls, except those that have not been deflowered. He makes no distinction between innocent and guilty… What the insane Father required was blood and misery; he was indifferent as to who furnished it.” Twain’s book was published posthumously in 1939. His daughter, Clara Clemens, at first objected to it being published, but later changed her mind in 1960 when she believed that public opinion had grown more tolerant of the expression of such ideas. That was half a century before Fianna Fail and the Green Party imposed a new blasphemy law on the people of Ireland.

5. Tom Lehrer, The Vatican Rag, 1963: “Get in line in that processional, step into that small confessional. There, the guy who’s got religion’ll tell you if your sin’s original. If it is, try playing it safer, drink the wine and chew the wafer. Two, four, six, eight, time to transubstantiate!”

6. Randy Newman, God’s Song, 1972: “And the Lord said: I burn down your cities – how blind you must be. I take from you your children, and you say how blessed are we. You all must be crazy to put your faith in me. That’s why I love mankind.”

7. James Kirkup, The Love That Dares to Speak its Name, 1976: “While they prepared the tomb I kept guard over him. His mother and the Magdalen had gone to fetch clean linen to shroud his nakedness. I was alone with him… I laid my lips around the tip of that great cock, the instrument of our salvation, our eternal joy. The shaft, still throbbed, anointed with death’s final ejaculation.” This extract is from a poem that led to the last successful blasphemy prosecution in Britain, when Denis Lemon was given a suspended prison sentence after he published it in the now-defunct magazine Gay News. In 2002, a public reading of the poem, on the steps of St. Martin-in-the-Fields church in Trafalgar Square, failed to lead to any prosecution. In 2008, the British Parliament abolished the common law offences of blasphemy and blasphemous libel.

8. Matthias, son of Deuteronomy of Gath, in Monty Python’s Life of Brian, 1979: “Look, I had a lovely supper, and all I said to my wife was that piece of halibut was good enough for Jehovah.”

9. Rev Ian Paisley MEP to the Pope in the European Parliament, 1988: “I denounce you as the Antichrist.” Paisley’s website describes the Antichrist as being “a liar, the true son of the father of lies, the original liar from the beginning… he will imitate Christ, a diabolical imitation, Satan transformed into an angel of light, which will deceive the world.”

10. Conor Cruise O’Brien, 1989: “In the last century the Arab thinker Jamal al-Afghani wrote: ‘Every Muslim is sick and his only remedy is in the Koran.’ Unfortunately the sickness gets worse the more the remedy is taken.”

11. Frank Zappa, 1989: “If you want to get together in any exclusive situation and have people love you, fine – but to hang all this desperate sociology on the idea of The Cloud-Guy who has The Big Book, who knows if you’ve been bad or good – and cares about any of it – to hang it all on that, folks, is the chimpanzee part of the brain working.”

12. Salman Rushdie, 1990: “The idea of the sacred is quite simply one of the most conservative notions in any culture, because it seeks to turn other ideas – uncertainty, progress, change – into crimes.” In 1989, Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran issued a fatwa ordering Muslims to kill Rushdie because of blasphemous passages in Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses.

13. Bjork, 1995: “I do not believe in religion, but if I had to choose one it would be Buddhism. It seems more livable, closer to men… I’ve been reading about reincarnation, and the Buddhists say we come back as animals and they refer to them as lesser beings. Well, animals aren’t lesser beings, they’re just like us. So I say fuck the Buddhists.”

14. Amanda Donohoe on her role in the Ken Russell movie Lair of the White Worm, 1995: “Spitting on Christ was a great deal of fun. I can’t embrace a male god who has persecuted female sexuality throughout the ages, and that persecution still goes on today all over the world.”

15. George Carlin, 1999: “Religion easily has the greatest bullshit story ever told. Think about it. Religion has actually convinced people that there’s an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever ’til the end of time! But He loves you. He loves you, and He needs money! He always needs money! He’s all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing, and all-wise, somehow just can’t handle money! Religion takes in billions of dollars, they pay no taxes, and they always need a little more. Now, talk about a good bullshit story. Holy Shit!”

16. Paul Woodfull as Ding Dong Denny O’Reilly, The Ballad of Jaysus Christ, 2000: “He said me ma’s a virgin and sure no one disagreed, Cause they knew a lad who walks on water’s handy with his feet… Jaysus oh Jaysus, as cool as bleedin’ ice, With all the scrubbers in Israel he could not be enticed, Jaysus oh Jaysus, it’s funny you never rode, Cause it’s you I do be shoutin’ for each time I shoot me load.”

17. Jesus Christ, in Jerry Springer The Opera, 2003: “Actually, I’m a bit gay.” In 2005, the Christian Institute tried to bring a prosecution against the BBC for screening Jerry Springer the Opera, but the UK courts refused to issue a summons.

18. Tim Minchin, Ten-foot Cock and a Few Hundred Virgins, 2005: “So you’re gonna live in paradise, With a ten-foot cock and a few hundred virgins, So you’re gonna sacrifice your life, For a shot at the greener grass, And when the Lord comes down with his shiny rod of judgment, He’s gonna kick my heathen ass.”

19. Richard Dawkins in The God Delusion, 2006: “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” In 2007 Turkish publisher Erol Karaaslan was charged with the crime of insulting believers for publishing a Turkish translation of The God Delusion. He was acquitted in 2008, but another charge was brought in 2009. Karaaslan told the court that “it is a right to criticise religions and beliefs as part of the freedom of thought and expression.”

20. Pope Benedict XVI quoting a 14th century Byzantine emperor, 2006: “Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.” This statement has already led to both outrage and condemnation of the outrage. The Organisation of the Islamic Conference, the world’s largest Muslim body, said it was a “character assassination of the prophet Muhammad”. The Malaysian Prime Minister said that “the Pope must not take lightly the spread of outrage that has been created.” Pakistan’s foreign Ministry spokesperson said that “anyone who describes Islam as a religion as intolerant encourages violence”. The European Commission said that “reactions which are disproportionate and which are tantamount to rejecting freedom of speech are unacceptable.”

21. Christopher Hitchens in God is not Great, 2007: “There is some question as to whether Islam is a separate religion at all… Islam when examined is not much more than a rather obvious and ill-arranged set of plagiarisms, helping itself from earlier books and traditions as occasion appeared to require… It makes immense claims for itself, invokes prostrate submission or ‘surrender’ as a maxim to its adherents, and demands deference and respect from nonbelievers into the bargain. There is nothing-absolutely nothing-in its teachings that can even begin to justify such arrogance and presumption.”

22. PZ Myers, on the Roman Catholic communion host, 2008: “You would not believe how many people are writing to me, insisting that these horrible little crackers (they look like flattened bits of styrofoam) are literally pieces of their god, and that this omnipotent being who created the universe can actually be seriously harmed by some third-rate liberal intellectual at a third-rate university… However, inspired by an old woodcut of Jews stabbing the host, I thought of a simple, quick thing to do: I pierced it with a rusty nail (I hope Jesus’s tetanus shots are up to date). And then I simply threw it in the trash, followed by the classic, decorative items of trash cans everywhere, old coffeegrounds and a banana peel.”

23. Ian O’Doherty, 2009: “(If defamation of religion was illegal) it would be a crime for me to say that the notion of transubstantiation is so ridiculous that even a small child should be able to see the insanity and utter physical impossibility of a piece of bread and some wine somehow taking on corporeal form. It would be a crime for me to say that Islam is a backward desert superstition that has no place in modern, enlightened Europe and it would be a crime to point out that Jewish settlers in Israel who believe they have a God given right to take the land are, frankly, mad. All the above assertions will, no doubt, offend someone or other.”

24. Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, 2009: “Whether a person is atheist or any other, there is in fact in my view something not totally human if they leave out the transcendent… we call it God… I think that if you leave that out you are not fully human.” Because atheism is not a religion, the Irish blasphemy law does not protect atheists from abusive and insulting statements about their fundamental beliefs. While atheists are not seeking such protection, we include the statement here to point out that it is discriminatory that this law does not hold all citizens equal.

25. Dermot Ahern, Irish Minister for Justice, introducing his blasphemy law at an Oireachtas Justice Committee meeting, 2009, and referring to comments made about him personally: “They are blasphemous.” Deputy Pat Rabbitte replied: “Given the Minister’s self-image, it could very well be that we are blaspheming,” and Minister Ahern replied: “Deputy Rabbitte says that I am close to the baby Jesus, I am so pure.” So here we have an Irish Justice Minister joking about himself being blasphemed, at a parliamentary Justice Committee discussing his own blasphemy law, that could make his own jokes illegal.

Finally, as a bonus, Micheal Martin, Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs, opposing attempts by Islamic States to make defamation of religion a crime at UN level, 2009: “We believe that the concept of defamation of religion is not consistent with the promotion and protection of human rights. It can be used to justify arbitrary limitations on, or the denial of, freedom of expression. Indeed, Ireland considers that freedom of expression is a key and inherent element in the manifestation of freedom of thought and conscience and as such is complementary to freedom of religion or belief.” Just months after Minister Martin made this comment, his colleague Dermot Ahern introduced Ireland’s new blasphemy law.

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Opinionated Neighbor

This web site from January of 1999 is still up, and it is still right. Clearly, in hind site, all those who were opposed to the construction of the Adkins Road Park and Ride must see how wrong they were. The lot was and still is the highest and best use for this land. It also is clearly the best location for a park and ride. Duh! We could have had this community asset right in our back yard. Instead, it never got built and we have to drive at 5 miles or more to the nearest park and ride.

http://www.hunterdesign.com/klassified/laketran.htm

It is interesting that a few people found this site and commented on it back in 2001. Of course they were not in agreement.

Acid Drenched Sci-Fi

The late Douglas Adams The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy stands the test of time. For me, lot of sci-fi does stand up despite being old and sometime taking place in the past. I just put it in the perspective of when the book was written.

I just read this book last week and it stands up just fine even though it was written in the 70’s. Well known as an atheist and humorist, Adams keeps just enough story going to keep it moving in between the satire and drug induced wackiness.

It’s a short book and a quick read. The fairly recent movie follows the book closely. Both are highly recommended for any wise guys out there.

Support Your Local Library (not)

Warning, this tax payer is severely overtaxed and thus somewhat grumpy.

I got into an argument with a room full of people recently, and nobody came to my aid. I’m not sure if I made my point during this conversation, but I’d like to think so. Probably not. This is an unpopular viewpoint, but somebody has to say it.

Here’s the deal. The question was about our local suburban library (community population > 50,000) adding on to their already heavy property taxes. I figured that I was already paying $200-$250/year and this increase will add another $200-$300 per year. We had previously voted down this issue – twice – and it was back on the ballot.

The library has a poor history. When I moved to Mentor in the 1980’s I was appalled at the poor library. Since childhood I’ve been a regular library patron. Starting with the Cleveland libraries (my local branch and the main library, downtown), then suburban libraries in the area when we moved, my university libraries, and a library in a distant suburban where I lived, I have a long history using libraries. To think that a large suburb would have so poor a facility and collection was a shock.

Yet when they wanted to drastically expand the facility quite a while back, I did not support it (the issue passed). I felt that there was no evidence that the library would improve (just the building, not the collection, management, etc.).  This proved to be true for quite a while, at least. Eventually the collection came around, but the library still has a low end feel. For instance, it never joined the usual on-line alliances (it seems like every other area library is a member). With the recent defeat of the tax issues, the library hours were cut to an absurdly low level (I think it was 40 hours a week). The management lacked the creativity to find ways to keep it open. I think they were also trying to punish the tax payers.

So here are the library trustees who have a poor track record, and show contempt for the patrons (and they have a poor track record with employee relations too). They don’t deserve my support.

The argument was put to me that a library is simply an important community asset and if it isn’t good enough, it must be brought up to par by funding it with taxes. Otherwise, my property’s value will go down.

My rebuttal has two sides:

  1. There is no evidence that the library will improve by adding more money. They have not done well with what they have and have done a poor job of finding alternate sources of funds.
  2. My property value will recede because it is overtaxed.

The issue passed. I will pay $500 a year for this library. My property will not increase in value with this tax.