Monogram Systems The world leader in rail, aviation & transport waste disposal. If want to crap on the move these are the guys to call. They just won the contract for the new Boeing 7E7 and the Airbus A380 so you will be crapping in their johns for a long time to come.
Jelly Belly Remember Ronald Reagan's bean? Those brillant crystals Thacher dipped into as she contemplated free money, a stamp to the face of Irish and a kick in the ass to the unions? That sweet candy, Gorby allowed to tickle his tougue as he contempated the demise of Lenin's dream. Little dimples of necker conjoured in the foothills of Napa, a team of dilligent Californians, new favors daily.
Solectron Solectron is a leading global provider of electronics manufacturing and integrated supply chain services. We serve the world's most innovative companies in industries that rely on high-tech electronics. Our 60,000 employees have a hand in designing, making and servicing products that people around the world rely on every day.
Aidells Sausages Bay Area sausage pioneer Bruce Aidell has been crafting hand-made links from locally grown products for over 20 years. Find them at your local speciality foods store such as Whole Foods. Yummy.
It’s cliché to say that California is a just plastic world where all we do is move on to the next big thing and forget, or reinvent, our history. While sadly this is partially true, we still have a lot of things that we should remember. One thing Free California thinks should get more respect is the Punk Rock scene here in the late 1970’s which rivaled and in many ways has been more influencial than it's counterparts in London and New York. And since Green Day has been getting so much attention lately now is the perfect time dust off those iPod's to pay homage to the true Cali Rock Gods without whom Green Day would be just a bunch of Berkeley burnouts.
Here is a list of some of Free California’s favorite bands from the Golden Era of California Punk:
Jody Fosters Army (We don't care what you think THEY RULE!)
The Circle Jerks
The Center for American Progress released a very interesting report on Friday detailing the by state and by city cost to fund the war in Iraq and compared that to federal spending on Homeland Security and funding the No Child Left Behind Act.
Not surprisingly, most of the cost and funding closely reflects the area population or outsized local terror threats such as the massive spending to protect high risk city centers like New York and D.C. There is; however, one glaring exception which every Californian, least of all our Governor, ought to be screaming from the hills to correct: THE STATE OF TEXAS GET'S DOUBLE THE AMOUNT OF FEDERAL DOLLARS FOR HOMELAND SECURITY THAN CALIFORNIA DOES.
If anyone can explain to FC why Texas, with less 1/4th the coast line, far more at risk targets (Golden Gate Bridge, LAX), fewer international ports, half the population and half the number of foreign born citizens gets such a larger percentage of security of funding, I would love to hear why. Some might argue that Texas has a longer border with Mexico and more crossings. And, while that is true and you could argue they derserve a bit more money to lock that down, our border is more than half as long and considering how at risk we are it is difficult to justify the massive investment the United States Government is making to protect the Texans with one, count it, one International Port vs. California's four.
As you may have noticed, we took a few days off to take stock and figure out where to go next.
Free California views this latest political tumult with some trepidation but we also see reason for hope. This is a new day and it is plain for all to see the political dichotomy of our country has changed. The Democrats and the Nader-esque 3rd parties are dying the slow death of irrelevance. They are stuck fighting wedge issues while the Republican Party sets the issues of the day. They have turned into a bad parody of the Conservatives, offering no real new ideas. There is only one Party in this country, the one with the most money. It does not matter whether you are liberal or conservative you have been duped, tricked and cajoled and these cats shape you to serve their needs.
Whoever carves out a political position beyond the moneymen will emerge as the new force in American Politics.
For a year, we have outlined (badly) our belief of what that new force should be. A power where Californians gain some measure of self-determination, more direct democracy, a government addressing the real issues threatening the Golden State. One that will help us get healthier, to planning for the future and defend ourselves in the public good not corporate priorities. Searching, as much as we can, for way to create a political discourse based on working person-to-person, street-to-street, acknowledging that not everyone is either a yuppie or Christian hunter.
In the coming weeks, we plan to unveil new tools, ideas, personalities and tactics as they are emerge, the bulwarks against Conservative Corporatism. But we’ve realized we can no longer do this alone. Today, we make a call to arms to Californians and our allies around the nation. Join us. Send us your ideas and articles that are relevant to this struggle. Help us find this new truth and this new way of thinking.
This is new day, yes, but that is all it is. We’ve lived a happy life attached to this union of United States for 154 years, but every year we’ve seen the slow ticking clock of our demise. No longer. You want something to fight for, a cause that can result in real change and real progress, something that can take the political power away from Wall Street and put it back on main street?
Aldous Huxley once said, "facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored."
Well, if you look around, you realize we are ignoring them.
This gentleman, however earnest, did a great and creepy disservice to his country on Saturday Night. Duplicating, down to the button, our worst nightmares. And yet, everyone will tell you how great his rendition of "God Bless America" was in Game 3 of the ALCS. Great. Yes, great, to Goth-fans, nihilists and right wing kooks! It is no exaggeration to say his rendition could have been sung during the Munich Games in 1936 and had a homey feel.
This kind of idolatry and ceremony has an impact on people physically and emotionally. It brings things out in us, dangerous things, and overtime, our society could become lost in the fugue. Yes, we have seen this before but something tells me it is more heightened now.
Something is creeping into us and we might be losing the strength to prevent it from killing us.
Aviators took advantage of the smooth California skies shortly after Wilbur and Orville Wright took off in Kitty Hawk and we never looked back. By the 1920’s, under the guise of the various operations including the Hughes Tools Company, the state became the undisputed center of aviation in America. That strength cumulated in Muroc, CA in 1947 when Chuck Yeager became the first man to reach the speed of sound.
As the post-war era settled into the Cold War, California’s domination increased as companies like Lockheed-Martin innovated in ways un-imaginable just 10 years earlier. Lockheed’s famous R & D laboratory “The Skunk Works” in Palmdale, CA produced a succession of world beating aircraft including the P-38 Lighting, early “jumbo” jets like the Constellation, and dynamic spy plans like the U2 and the fastest plane in history the SR-71 Blackbird. In addition to aviation, the state became a leader in space exploration. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena has produced rockets and sophisticated payloads from Appllo to the recent Pathfinder mission to mars.
But old mavericks are hard to kill and today the state is in the mist of an aviation renaissance. 2 years ago, old warhorse Lockheed-Martin won the largest military order in history, a commission to produce the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, jet fighter of the 21st century. And now, with the boys over at SpaceShipOne, it seems likely that California will be the first to produce a civilian passenger spacecraft.
California may not have been first in flight but we are without doubt best in flight.
The very word seems in bad taste, a high gloss cheese; jetted from the casting couches of lazy moneymen on a hunt for primetime coose. The movie business - in all its tacky, bawdy, mondo glory - is perhaps the states most recognizable cliché. We all know it when we see it, the corn haired Midwestern beauty waiting for that big break only to be turned out by tinsel towns hard glow, or that young upstart, waiting tables or pounding nails only to end up in some late night double feature, Gangmember #2 his only screen credit.
That’s Hollywood, babe, a city of no pity.
Most people would claim that little good comes from this degenerated side of Hollywood, but that is far from true. The dirty Hollywood of West LA dreams: script jockeys, boob-jobbed glossies does; in fact, has a positive side. And that side can be typified and summed up in the form of one man, Roger Corman: The King of the B-Movie.
Although it is unlikely you have seen any of his films, his influence on modern Hollywood is unrivaled. After working as messenger for 20th-Century Fox, rising from story analyst, to producer, screenwriter, and finally director (in 1955), Corman set out on his own producing outrageous exploitation flicks such as Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women, Devil's Angels, and St. Valentine's Day Massacre. His career spanned 30 years, producing more than 50 films, often at clip of 6 per year. Corman cranked out sleaze like Enron cooked accounting errors and front companies.
But what makes this man truly great, he is arguably one of the most influential filmmakers in history, is his ability to first find and then give work to young aspiring film makers. In this talent Corman is without rival. Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Jonathan Demme, James Cameron, Peter Bogdanovich, Joe Dante, among others, all owe their start in the movie business to this captain of trash. Without Corman, Hollywood just would not be Hollywood.
So three cheers for Roger Corman! He proves, as Pablo Piscasso said, “The chief enemy of creativity is “good” taste.”
Controversy has swirled around Vincent Gallo’s film The Brown Bunny since it was screened at last years Cannes film festival and this past weekend Free California saw the film to see for ourselves what all the fuss is about and discover whether the brutal reviews have been warranted. And, we can tell you up front; the naysayers can all go to hell. The Brown Bunny is a good, maybe great, movie and worth the price of admission.
The premise of The Brown Bunny is simple: depressed man takes a road trip back to his one time home in California and in the process reveals the reason for his depression. The cinematography, which in our opinion is breathtaking and will be very familiar to Californians, adds to overall sense of doom, intermixing common clichés of the “sunny west” with a sense foreboding. The view is so heightened one gets the sense that Joan Didion or Eric Davis should have gotten a co-writer credit.
Only towards the end of the film, when the controversy finally comes, literally and figuratively, does the plot begin to make sense. As Chloe Sevigny has said repeatedly in interviews, the scenes, which have been labeled as outrageous, are in fact necessary and the whole point of the film. The actions in these scenes represent the final redemption for Bud, the depressed man, and allow him to move on with his life.
This film says something about manhood that is rarely touched in the American Cinema, the vibe and plotting are much closer to recent French films than anything currently being produced in United States. And, we should say, this film is by no means the high water mark for salacious sex and violence. Anyone who seen Gaspar Noe’s 'Irreversible' will find The Brown Bunny tame by comparison. The difference, we think, is that a know American, Sevigny, is the centerpiece of the sexual content. We doubt the film would have drawn such ire if Sevigny had been a no-name Frenchwoman instead of the Hollywood, Vogue cover, mover-and-shaker that Chloe is.
For Californians, especially men who have moved here from somewhere and have tried to find a place for themselves in the wild wild west, this movie is rare indeed. As every male who has made the physical and psychological trek westward knows, “making it” in California is hard. The society can be unrelenting in its cruelty and if you do not shield yourself by finding a safe existence quickly you will be run over. And that is what happens to Bud. It is very likely that the reviewers have failed to recognize this basic essence. It is impossible for a reviewer, in New York, Chicago or whatever, to fully “get” Bud because they could never comprehend what it is like to completely set yourself free upon the land and open yourself to the ultimate victory or defeat. Not surprisingly, recent reviews in LA and San Francisco have been much kinder to Gallo because they are “getting-in” in a way Roger Ebert never could.
For the westerner, The Brown Bunny shows Bud Clay at the bottom, like the Donner Party eating their friends in a frost bound Sierra Nevada, did, or Evil Knieval going headlong over the Grand Canyon, did. To really appreciate The Brown Bunny you need to understand the commitment it takes to charge Mavericks, or bet your life on some cocked-up Internet scheme. Open to the world; opened to ultimate failure.
See The Brown Bunny but be warned if you do not “get-it” or are sickened by it there is a reason and you will never understand until you take the ultimate chance on some wide open range.
It’s time to welcome the new girl in Barbie Universe, Cali-Girl Barbie!
The beauty of Cali-Girl Barbie is, of course, her totally rad sense of fashion, a hoochie momma hairdo straight out of Christina Aguilera’s playbook, a super cool crew of Cali-friends and all the mega-glam accessories to make the other girls green but this is no regular Barbie doll. No way Jose, for today’s real Cali-girls we need a little something to reflect real life, so this Barbie has been latinized. Now, either this Barbie has a really sweet tan or Momma Barbie got busy with the gardener because (though she maintains a Nordic physique) her complexion is one shade north of Chihuahua brown.
Despite the Latino looks, everything about Barbie is the same; she parties, rides cool wheels and connects with the beach Lifestyle. So, Barrio-Barbie this is not. But Mattel, Barbie’s maker, is pushing a subtle little bit of cultural integration and it works in a Barbie sort of way. What’s interesting, and hopeful I think, is that this new California image making, directed strongly at young Latino Girls, merges Latin-style with older images of California - beach culture - forming something totally American. They still have not given her a Cholo low rider or gothic stomach tattooing but hey it's a start.
The Moist Site Blog by perpetual law student with occasional tight diddies on Cali comings and goings.
The Urban Dictionary Want to know the difference between "Hella" and "Bizzy"? Ever had trouble interpreting your 14-year-old nephew at that family reunion. Open and, as KRS-1 says, "your must learn..."
SFist Somehow their URL conjures thoughts of “Friscos” seminal place in history of fisting culture, but no, instead this hipster super-blog chronicles SF news and happenings and is a comer for the in-d-know.
Wulad Interesting, well written SF blog. From what I can gather, this dude is like a wigger-as-blogger with a foxy asian girlfriend, C-baby.
Flashenabled FC is no fan of tech for tech's sake. With good reason, laptop jockeys nearly killed the beloved homeland. However, Phil and the FE crew are hacking their way to a better future. Respect. Thankfully, they are also Ecotopians.
Turning The Tide Love'em, Hate'em, fear'em, it matters not. The man knows truth and by ignoring him we ignore reality. This is Noam Chomsky's blog.
Betty Bowers Great site. This is like The Onion on meth. Truly original. It's sites like this that make the web unique. Bravo Betty, I have no idea what or who you are but do I love you.
IraqTheModel Ever wanted to hear some perspective from real Iraqis who are not tainted with outragous fundementalist mumbo-jumbo or flat-out hate for the USA? Real people watching a real country forming around themselves. This is a good place to start.
Latin Political Massive portal of english language news and analysis from Latin America. If you have any desire to see what's up with our brothers and sisters to the south this is it.
NO LOGO Site directed by the other women in my life: Naomi Klein, who if I was not married would be my wife. My 2nd baby-girl is trying to fight globalization. Man, is she ever sexy.