Monday, October 31, 2011

Random Monday morning thoughts on Herman Cain




by Subhash Kateel

I think about Herman Cain damn near everyday.  I am pretty sure a lot of people in Florida do.  I can’t help it; I live by a Godfather’s Pizza.  Say what you want about him, but Godfather’s is damn good pizza.  When I first moved from Brooklyn to Miami, I laughed when people told me that I can get the best pizza in Florida at a gas station.  But it’s true, the stuff is like crystal meth (I am tired of crack metaphors and similes-you know sentencing disparities and all). 

But every time I think of Godfather’s business model, I start wondering why anybody would support Herman Cain for president.  Don’t get me wrong, he is by far the most entertaining candidate. People really relate to him because everyone has a relative like him.  For real, think about the outspoken uncle that has something crazy to say about everything political, the one that has everyone rolling on the floor laughing when he says that we can end racism by faking an alien invasion, or that every politician should take drugs at least once if they really want to know how to fight the drug war.  And you keep telling yourself, “my uncle is funny as hell, but good thing he’s not president.”  Yeah, well that uncle is officially running.

Besides the whole crazy uncle routine, Herman Cain’s other selling point is the businessman job-creator thing.  I guess I kinda get it.  During a recession, people think that if the country needs jobs, and businessmen have businesses that have jobs, they must know how to create them. Some people are so sold on this idea that they will even support a bad businessman for governor (Florida, I see you).

After driving around the state. I realize one thing about Herman Cain’s job creation model.  At first I thought it was just the one by my house, but every damn Godfather’s Pizza I have ever seen is in a gas station.  The one where I live is a gas station+ Dunkin Donuts + Blimpie’s Subs + bootleg hot dog stand + Godfather’s Pizza.  Every time I go in, the nice lady that makes my pizza sometimes makes the Blimpie’s sandwiches, sells the lottery tickets, works the gas counter, and stocks the shelves.  There are never more than three employees in the whole station. 

If you just judge Godfather’s business model by what I see everyday, it is all about putting a pizza stand in a gas station with four other businesses and getting the workers there to do four jobs for the pay of one.  If you judge Herman Cain’s job creation plan by what I see everyday, he would probably create a lot of jobs, like four per a person…for the same pay as one.

You got to hand it to Uncle Herman, he’s a hustler, he makes good pizza, and he’s funny.    He is everything you would want in a crazy uncle.    Good thing he ain’t president.   


NOTE:  This blog was written before I read the news about the new sexual harassment scandal this morning.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

THE SHOW IS UP, OCCUPATIONS, ASSASSINATIONS, DEBT COLLECTIONS...LISTEN!!!

FAMILY, THE SHOW IS UP, LISTEN!  DOWNLOAD HERE OR PRESS PLAY BELOW
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10/26/2011 Show Links and Guests
We heard from folks from Occupy Oakland and Occupy Miami, and discussed 99Actions. Email 99Actions@gmail.com when you organize a 99Action solidarity event in Miami.
Nicolas Sandy Davies, author of Blood On Our Hands: The American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq discussed recent international assassinations.
Herman de Jesus of the Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project (NEDAP) talked about what to do when you get calls from debt collectors: your rights and how to write a dispute letter, the law, resources for free legal assistance, free credit reports and referrals to private consumer law attorneys.

Occupations, Assassinations, and Avoiding Debt Collections...

TONIGHT  Wed. Oct. 26, 2011 @ 7pm
or tune in to 880 am (S. Florida)




Occupy Updates...

As part of our ongoing Occupy coverage, we will visit our local occupy site and let you know what is going on with the #occupy movement around the country.

Shot Like Dogs or Like Dictators and Terrorists?

The recent killings of former Libyan head Moammar Qadaffi and US citizen Anwar Al-Awlaki are being touted as foreign policy successes by the Obama administration and proof of success in the war on terror.  But a few people have started asking questions.  Is it really a great thing for this government (and fighters funded by this government) to get in the habit of killing people without trial or transparency?  Is this just a necessary evil to confront unnecessary evil or is the only thing we are really killing Democracy?  Tune in and talk about it!

Battling Debt Collectors "When You're Broke"

If you are part of the 99% that is in debt, getting collections letters and calls can be worse than getting pulled over by the cops.  And while folks are fighting for a change and a better tomorrow, that is really not gonna stop debt collectors from calling you today.  As part of our "when you're broke" segment, we will tell you how to fight for your rights when confronting debt collectors and collection agencies.


You know what to do...

TUNE IN! CALL IN (305-541-2350)! Let's Talk About It!

TONIGHT  Wed. Oct. 26, 2011 @ 7pm
or tune in to 880 am (S. Florida)

Don't forget to check our website to listen to shows you missed and to read our thoughts.  If you feel it...spread it...


Friday, October 21, 2011

We Practice What We Sing, and We Sing Anthems

An open letter in response to James C. McKinley Jr.'s NY Times article, "At the Protests, the Message Lacks a Melody," insisting #Occupy lacks an anthem
by La Guardia and Subhash Kateel

Once again, the New York Times takes it upon itself to be the gatekeeper of social movements. The paper that has really good articles until it doesn’t, first reduced the Occupy movement to “pantomiming progressivism” right before embracing it. Now it unilaterally declares that the movement lacks an anthem. For James C. McKinley Jr., the article’s author, his evidence is the lack of Bob Dylan-esque tunes flowing out of the lips of Occupy protestors.

Maybe McKinley wrote his article before searching YouTube, or reading other news sites like CBS or the Miami New Times (twice). Because we can count at least 4 anthems off the top of our heads. We should know, we wrote one of them. But so did Rebel Diaz, a group called Occupy Freedom, Ground Zero and the Global Block Collective and a group out west called The Roaring.

Each of the anthems hail from a different region but speak to our common struggles. When we sing or rap or whatever we do, we do it based on what we see in real communities. And we see a lot of people that are tired of an unbalanced system. Our anthems aren't lazy, complaining, we don't wanna work, somebody hold our hands, rich bad/poor good songs. They are honest looks at struggles facing the 99% that we know and see everyday, while making a public decree that there WILL be changes.

As for our anthem, (“We Are The 99%), we aren’t Bob Dylan, or a group of billboard chart topping international recording artists. We're a community organizer turned radio show host, temporarily unemployed rapper, music teacher/producer, and a vocalist...But we are also the 99%...

If James C. McKinley wanted to truly write an article that broke new ground about Occupy anthems, he could write about what makes this generation of anthem artists different.

The singers, producers, and thought creators behind most Occupy anthems are, no doubt, musicians and music lovers; but also more. In the case of Rebel Diaz, they run a community organization in the Bronx, the Rebel Diaz Art Collective. And while other folks were complaining about the lack of melanin at Occupy Wall Street, they did something about it by bringing their members out from the Bronx to Wall Street.

The people that put together “We Are The 99%” in Miami have been part of organizations like Seed305, Families For Freedom, Florida Immigrant Coalition, Catalyst Hip Hop, PATH to Hip Hop and Amnesty International as organizers, directors, community workers and participants for over a decade.

In other words, the creators of Occupy anthems don’t just sing for a better world, we try our hardest to practice what we sing. But make no mistake, we will sing and chant, organize and mobilize until we really see a change that benefits the communities we love.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The 1% Lowdown and Fitness With No Funds! Listen!

FAMILY!  The show is up and a blog will be coming soon, in the meantime, download the show HERE to listen or press play below...





10/19/2011 Show Links and Guests:
Kevin Feeney of 1Miami and Tim Elfrink, reporter for the Miami New Times spoke about some of 1%, specifically, cruise industry giants based in South Florida.  If you only want to listen to that segment, download HERE or press play below.



Joseph Phelan, a Miami Crossfit trainer, Beverley Bradley of Underground Physique in Brooklyn and Jitu Sadiki, a community organizer in California gave us tips on how to stay fit when you're broke.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Finding the 1% and Getting Fit With No Funds...

Wed. October 18 @ 7pm
or tune in to 880 am (S. Florida)

FAMILY! This show is gonna be live.   As part of our continued coverage of #Occupy, we will check in with folks at #OccupyMiami to see how things are going and then...


WHO IS THE 1%?
There are tumblr's and tweets and anthems about the 99%.  But little attention has been paid in the past few weeks to taking hard looks at who makes up the 1% and what they do that is so damn objectionable.  On this show, we will take a little look at a few folks that fit that 1% tax bracket (but don't pay that 1% tax).

"GETTIN BIG WHEN YOU'RE BROKE AND GETTING FIT WITH NO FUNDS...
 So while folks are out in the street trying to push for a change to the economic system, people are still broke and out of shape and their bodies can't wait for change to come.  In our second segment of ..."when you are broke,"  We will talk to friends of the show that can tell us how to stay in shape when the economy is down, you have no gym membership, and feel like you don't have time.

YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS SHOW!

Plus check out some love we got in the New Times yesterday here and here.

TUNE IN! CALL IN! LET'S TALK ABOUT IT!
Wed. October 18 @ 7pm
or tune in to 880 am (S. Florida)

Friday, October 14, 2011

It's NOT the Liberal Tea Party!




by Subhash Kateel

#Occupy is NOT the Liberal Tea Party! It shouldn’t be either.

It was just a matter of time before the #Occupy movement spreading across the country would be compared to the Tea Party. This past week, everyone from Bill Maher and CNN to Glenn Beck and the Tea Party Patriots’ founders themselves have invoked, or spoken against, the characterization of #OccupyWallStreet as a liberal version of the Tea Party movement.

There are a few things that seem to unite the majority of these commentators:
  1. Most of them, including the Tea Party reps, seem to have never attended a Tea Party rally or #Occupy rally, or actually talked or listened to members of either for longer than a minute.
  2. The mainstream media types seem to really wanna egg on a good old fashioned culture war. Think North vs. South, urban vs. rural, Biggie vs. Tupac.
  3. A bunch of my Democratic party and liberal friends always wanted their own version of a Tea party, and now they feel like they might actually get one. It sort of reminds me of how the kid in junior high getting picked on acts when his MMA-fighting brother comes to pick him up after school.

The thing is, over the past few years I’ve had the opportunity to go to a couple Tea Party events and speak to more than a few Tea Party members. I've always thought the movement is more diverse (not really ethnically, but ideologically) than anyone will ever give it credit for. At their rallies I have found folks that range from batshit insane to pleasantly disagreeable to potential allies in local campaigns. And when folks weren’t filming me without my consent at immigrant rights events and calling me a Marxist-Leninist, radical Muslim terrorist, agent of George Soros (speaking of consistent and coherent messaging) on their blogs, I found them to be folks I could generally have cordial conversations with.

The first of those cordial talks was on the premier of Let’s Talk About It!, the talk radio show I co-host. It was an hour-long talk with the chair of the Florida Tea Party Patriots, Everett Wilkinson. Last week, I went back to ask him about his thoughts on #Occupy. Considering that the Tea Party Patriots’ alleged co-founders issued a scathing statement against #Occupy, what he said would surprise most people.

“I think it [#occupy] is actually a very good thing. I don’t necessarily agree with everything that is coming out of…the signs you see there…specifically about capitalism necessarily being evil…and against free markets. But I do think it is a good thing for the American people to wake up and see what is happening with corporate nepotism and the big corporations…how much of a stranglehold they have on the American political system. And that is I think in line with a lot of the Tea Party beliefs. Big government and big corporations are the reason for a lot of our problems today."
In the part of the interview I didn’t play on the show, he explained to me that his Tea Party friends in Boston were warmly received by #Occupy members when they attended their actions there. That doesn’t mean that all Tea Party factions agree with Everett, in fact some call him “a self serving publicity monger.” But before our show, I even received tweets from Tea Party members saying that the “real” Tea Party (“Not the one Palin and Bachman hijacked”-their words) fully supported #Occupy. In truth, the Tea Party has never been the unified movement with a unified message that the media portrays. But even if Everett and the guy who tweeted me only speak for a third of the Tea Party, they don’t sound like people that see #Occupy as being diametrically opposed to them.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Occupy and Eat...Listen!!!

Show is up, write up coming soon...Download HERE or press play below. Plus, our Hip Rock remix of "We Are The 99%" is below...If you feel it, spread it.
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10/12/2011 Show Links and Guests:
Kotu Bajaj, Jose Suarez from 1Miami, Joseph Phelan and Bruce Wayne Stanley discussed Occupy Miami and the October 15th Occupy Miami rally.
Courtenay Strickland from Common Threads
Alejandro Cantagallo, Chef and Culinary Instructor
Alex Cuevas, Owner of Choices Vegan Cafe
Dr. Marvin Dunn, Founder of Roots in the City, check out their website for Overtown's Farmer's Market hours.

#Occupying With No Wall Street and Eating With No Chee$e?! Let's Talk About It!

TONIGHT! WEDNESDAY, OCT. 12 @ 7pm
or tune into 880 AM (S. Florida)





FAMILY! Last week, we had a whole show on #occupywallstreet and other #occupy movements going on around the country. We also unnveiled an anthem for the 99% of us "hustling, struggling and treading water,"courtesy of us, Laguardiaworld.com and producer Devin Arne. On our show tonight we got a bunch of stuff for you to talk about and listen to.

OR

Why #Occupy the Sunshine State?

We got feedback from our Florida listeners asking us to talk more about what's happening here. We got feedback from our non-Florida listeners asking us what the hell Floridians had to complain about. To them, we have no snow, no Wall Street, and a bunch of beaches. Well I could tell you all the things that Florida has to be mad at, but I would rather have our friends over here do it. Join us as we talk about why Floridians and Miamians are so so angry, they would rather #occupy stuff than go to Disney World or the beach.

We Are The 99% Hip Rock mix tonight!
Thanks to you, our Anthem, broke 1000 views on youtube. But we were just getting started and our family down here (Laguardia and superproducer Devin Arne) decided to create a HipRock remix with Fernando Castro...Check it out on our show tonight...it will be fire!

Breaking Bread When You're Broke or "99 Ways to cook Ramen noodles..." (LaGuardia from "We Are the 99%)
As part of our new "when you're broke segment," we wanted to talk about food, and what to do about it when you are short on funds. The average family (depending on what you mean by average) can spend anywhere from 12% to 30% of their income on food. While most expenses like rent, electricity, and the cable bill (does being broke mean no telenovelas or Breaking Bad?) are fixed, food is one of those things that can have some wiggle room in your budget. Does that mean a lot of $1 cheeseburgers at McDonald's? Is it possible to eat healthy and cheap? How do you do that when the only thing free range in your neighborhood are rats and the only thing grass-fed are stray dogs (we won't even)? Well tonight we are gonna chop it up with a chef or two about how to eat to live, while saving a little bit of bread.

You know the routine...Tune in! Call In! and Let's Talk About It!

TONIGHT! WEDNESDAY, OCT. 12 @ 7pm
or tune into 880 AM (S. Florida)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

WE ARE THE 99%: Listen

Folks, the show is up. In case you missed it, Let's Talk About It! and LaGuardiaWorld.com decided that the 99% need an anthem. So we made one, check it below. If you wanna listen to the show, download here or press play below. If you want to hear the Anthem for the 99%, press play on the youtube track.
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10/05/2011 Show Links & Guests:
Mike Newman, rock radio producer and DJ
Nadeem Mazen from Occupy Boston
G1 of Rebel Diaz and the Rebel Diaz Arts Collective
Danny Valdes from Occupy Wall Street
Vanessa Urbina and Muhammed Malik of Occupy Miami, online and on facebook

Monday, October 3, 2011

Why Are People Trying To #OccupyEverything? Let’s Talk About It!

WED. Oct 5 @ 7pm EST
 or tune in to 880 am (S. Florida)




If you haven’t figured out yet, a whole lot of people are really mad about the state of things, including the economy.  A bunch of people voted for “change,” and the economy didn’t. Another group of folks figured they’d let the market fix itself, only to get fixed by the market.  In the meantime, as we have covered over, and over, and over, people are being thrown out of their homes, losing their livelihood, and virtually killing themselves.  All the while, politicians-Democrats and Republicans alike- have decided that the best thing to do is to stay sucking.

Well, we sort of figured this was going to happen.  The basic feeling in the country is that the greed of the top 1% and Wall Street is more to blame for the economic suffering of millions than any other single thing.   Some folks are so fed up, that they decided to take it to Wall Street!  Unless you have been under a rock for the past couple weeks, you will know that a bunch of people converged on Wall Street and decided to stay there until something changed.  We covered it on our show a few weeks ago.  But what started out modestly has spread, even to other cities.  In fact an #OccupyMiami meeting just took place this weekend.  Is this the American Fall version of the Arab Spring? Do people have a plan or just a complaint?  Who are the 99% they keep talking about?  Do you feel inspired to turn up or tune out?

Well, at least tune in to us to talk about it.  In the meantime, check out these links if you wanna catch up

Watch this video from Occupy Miami’s first meeting.   

Check the main website for Occupy Wall Street:
occupywallst.org

Find out who the 99% are:
wearethe99percent.tumblr.com

Check out the dialog between one of your favorite co-hosts and others on www.organizingupgrade.com