Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rip Off City

via email:

Concert Fans Beware!

There’s a train wreck about to happen and consumer groups say YOU will be the victim if the two most powerful corporate interests in the live concert business get their way. But you can help stop the merger of Ticketmaster and Live Nation. The government needs to hear from music fans now. Tell the Department of Justice that you’re against these monopolies amassing illegal power over consumers, before it’s too late. antitrust.complaints@usdoj.gov

As a concertgoer you have already felt the pain, and if Ticketmaster and Live Nation get their way, it’ll get worse. In the last 12 years, since Live Nation and its predecessor started its widespread takeover of the concert industry, concert ticket prices have shot up 82% while the consumer price index has gone up just 17%*. We are concerned that if the two concert industry behemoths, Live Nation and Ticketmaster, are permitted to merge, the variety and quality of artists coming to local venues will be affected, and your costs could rise further and faster.

Five of the nation’s most prominent public interest groups called on the Department of Justice to block the proposed merger of Ticketmaster and Live Nation:

Consumers deserve a fair deal in the entertainment marketplace, not the fewer choices and higher prices that would result from this merger,” said Susan Grant, Director of Consumer Protection at Consumer Federation of America

This merger is an insult to both musicians and consumers,” said James Love, Director of Knowledge Ecology International

“We cannot envision a remedy that would ease this chilling impediment to competition… In the absence of other effective, expeditious remedies, the proposed transaction should be prohibited.” American Antitrust Institute White Paper

As described by Senator Herb Kohl (WI) in the House Antitrust hearing, “This merger will not only expand Ticketmaster’s control of the ticketing market by eliminating a competitor, but it is also creating an entity that will control the entire chain of the concert business – from artist management to concert promotion and production to ticketing and ticket resale.

This merger would be a disaster for consumers. Nothing short of blocking this takeover of the ticket market by two industry behemoths will be acceptable,” said National Consumers League Executive Director Sally Greenberg

“As president, I will direct my administration to reinvigorate antitrust enforcement. I will step up review of merger activity and take effective action to stop or restructure those mergers that are likely to harm consumer welfare…,” said Senator Barack Obama when he was campaigning for the presidency.

If you agree with the consumer groups and lawmakers, make a difference and LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD NOW.

Send a message to the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice telling them you support President Obama’s campaign promise to protect the American public from abusive monopolies.


To learn more, check out:


Public Interest Groups Call on Justice Department to Block Ticketmaster/LiveNation/Comcast Merger

American Antitrust Institute's White Paper TICKETMASTER - LIVE NATION

Philadelphia Weekly’s cover story “Monopoly Rules”


The 9:30 Club, I.M.P., Merriweather Post Pavilion, Jam Productions, Metropolitan Talent, Another Planet Entertainment, Frank Productions, Stone City Attractions, Rams Head Live, The Black Cat ... and independent concert promoters and venue operators nationwide.

*Study by Princeton University economist Alan Krueger

Plan B

Yet another world meeting without action on climate change.

Our leaders aren't doing their job. We look to them for action, not talk.

Maybe our leaders are working for someone else?

There are some things money can't buy. Money can't buy a new climate. It can't buy an extinct species. Or a polar ice cap. Or the water in the sea. Or the temperature of the air.

The old models won't get us out of this fix.

Consensus-driven policy has achieved nothing.

Bringing your own shopping bag to the grocery store has achieved nothing.

Denying climate change exists has achieved nothing.

What's next? Unplugging

Common Good City Farm

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Jack Rose, R.I.P.

Gone too soon

I first heard Jack Rose in 2003 at the now-defunct 611 Florida space in Washington, D.C. The crowded room was silent for over an hour. We were all transported. After his set I talked with him briefly. He was open and funny. I remember him plunking a box of vinyl LPs of Opium Musick (his new album at the time) down on the livingroom floor, cutting the tape with a pocket knife, and selling me the record for $10.

The next time I heard him was in 2006 in Providence, RI. He played the closing set of Terrastock. Our ears (and minds) were fried after three days of incredible music, yet he held the room as he picked out waves of ringing tones. It was a transcendent moment, one that I will never forget.

"Jack was one of a handful of people I've ever saw that can take an instrument and literally go beyond - there's lots of people out there who are merely good or great, but when he really felt it and channeled it, there was something divine and transcendent in his touch. No tricks, no electric effects, just the sensation of making that perfect thing that lifted you out of this world."

Monday, December 07, 2009

The Water From My Tap is Brown

Washington, DC – December 7, 2009- The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC WASA) is issuing a precautionary boil water/bottled water advisory for a portion of Northwest DC, affecting approximately 750 buildings.

DC WASA experienced a loss of pressure around 12:00 noon on Monday, December 07, 2009. This resulted in a drop of water pressure in the vicinity of 16th Street and Georgia Avenue, NW . A smaller neighborhood may have lost water pressure entirely, which could present a water quality problem.
Although we do not have an indication that the water system has been contaminated, as a precaution, DC WASA recommends that you boil all water before use or use bottled water. Water should be brought to a rolling boil for one minute and cooled before using. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, washing dishes, brushing teeth, making ice and for food preparation.

In addition, discard any food prepared today with water after 11:00 am. When preparing foods to eat, use the drinking water alternatives listed above or cook items that do not require water. For utensils and cooking instruments, use single-use items or those that have been sanitized. Some pathogens are not killed by alcohol gels or hand sanitizers, so soap and disinfected water are specifically recommended for hand washing.

The boil water advisory will continue until further notice, when the system is thoroughly flushed and the acceptable water quality is confirmed by water testing. This process will take at least two days. Please stay current by visiting our web site at www.dcwasa.com. DC WASA is taking all necessary steps to minimize the risk of water quality problems, including the immediate flushing of all lines in the impacted neighborhood.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009