Monthly Archives: November 2011

Now time for “The Further Decline of Human Civilization”…

As Dave Barry used to say, “I am not making this up”:

LOS ANGELES — A woman shot pepper spray to keep shoppers from merchandise she wanted during a Black Friday sale, and 20 people suffered minor injuries, authorities said.

The incident occurred shortly after 10:20 p.m. Thursday in a crowded Los Angeles-area Walmart as shoppers hungry for deals were let inside the store.

This is terrible. Why would anyone shop at Wal-Mart?

Police said the suspect shot the pepper spray when the coverings over the items she wanted were removed.

“Somehow she was trying to use it to gain an upper hand,” police Lt. Abel Parga told The Associated Press early Friday.

He said she was apparently after some electronics and used the pepper spray to keep other shoppers at bay.

What a fitting way to celebrate Thanksgiving: After a nice, warm meal with friends and family during which you give thanks for all that you have, you immediately take off for your local retail store to buy more things (on sale!) for which you can be thankful. It recalls the story of the first Christmas when Mary pepper-sprayed Joseph so she could stampede the Wise Men in order to grab their frankincense and myrrh.

I know Megyn Kelly believes pepper spray is a food product but I’d prefer you douse me with egg nog or even some mulled wine when putting me down so you can get the last iPod Touch the store has until it orders more the next day.

In honor of Black Friday and the “big commercial racket” that Linus van Pelt correctly predicted Christmas becoming, let’s listen to Madonna’s “More,” which will soon replace “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” as a holiday standard.

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Posted by on November 25, 2011 in Capitalism, Social Commentary


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Black Friday Comin’ Soon; Debt Remains ‘Til June…

Black Friday Comin’ Soon; Debt Remains ‘Til June…

“Black Friday,” the day after Thanksgiving, represents the entire house of cards upon which the U.S. economy is based. Starting in the middle of the night, people line up to spend money they don’t have on items they don’t need. During one of the worst economic periods in history, wouldn’t it make more sense for people to be frugal, maybe even exchange homemade gifts or just enjoy each other’s company on the holidays?

No, experts say that would cosign the U.S. economy to barrel-wearing oblivion.

Some analysts stress, however, that futile as it may seem to push struggling Americans into spending billions on products they could do without, the economy is too fragile to encourage anything less.

Adam Davidson, of National Public Radio’s Planet Money, describes Black Friday as a “one-day economic stimulus plan and job-creation programme” that is crucial to the American economy.

“Billions of dollars, which would otherwise never be spent, make their way into circulation,” he wrote in an article.

Although Scrooge gave Bob Cratchit the full day off for Christmas, retailers can’t be so liberal when attempting to make the most of this capitalist extravaganza.

When Anthony Hardwick, a part-time car-park attendant at a Target in Omaha, Nebraska, was told to report for work at 11pm on the evening of Thanksgiving – the most important public holiday by far for Americans – he refused.

“My fiancée is sad because I was supposed to have Thanksgiving dinner with her family and talk about wedding plans,” Mr Hardwick, 29, who was due to work a shift in his second job on Black Friday, said. “It’s kind of a raw deal.”

Supported by colleagues, he started a petition titled Tell Target to Save Thanksgiving.

“A full holiday with family is not just for the elite of this nation,” Mr Hardwick wrote. “All Americans should be able to break bread with loved ones and get a good night’s rest on Thanksgiving”

It attracted 200,000 signatures, which were delivered to company bosses.

A spokesman said workers were paid extra for filling Thanksgiving shifts and that “every effort to accommodate their requests” for time off was made by managers.

Does the “extra” workers were paid — most likely the standard time and a half — reflect the fortune the retailers stand to make? Not likely. This is part of what makes Black Friday a prime target for the Occupy Movement.

Occupy Black Friday is aiming to persuade people to shop locally to support their communities, rather than multinational conglomerates.

Another, Occupy Wal-Mart, is turning its focus on one huge outlet.

“Black Friday is the one day where the mega-corporations blatantly dictate our actions, they say ‘shop’ and we shop,” the group said in a statement.

“Hit the corporations that corrupt and control American politics where it hurts, and their profits.”

This is not a crazy idea. Shopping locally would ensure that more of the profits went to the people selling you the items rather than the executives who remained snug as a bug in their country home’s rug on Thanksgiving night, later dreaming of huge bonuses reflective of the sales blitz. Wal-Mart, especially, this year has reduced health care benefits for its employees despite still remaining incredibly profitable.

The question also remains as where people are getting the money to participate in the Black Friday frenzy. E.D. Kain at Forbes correctly points out that “we are in the red, and spending on top of unsustainable debt is neither wise nor a recipe for economic well-being.”

We can’t rely on some form of consumer-driven Keynesian stimulus in perpetuity. Spending is important, but not if it comes on the back of boatloads of consumer debt, even if that debt is the result of stagnant wages for the working and middle class.

Unfortunately, Kain falls into the trap of insisting that rampant, essentially needless consumerism is what the economy needs.

The last thing I would do in times such as these is attempt to convince people not to go out shopping. With unemployment teetering around 9% the worst possible thing we as consumers could do would be to stop spending money.

How can you stop spending what you don’t have? How many items purchased on Black Friday will be paid with a credit card? That’s great for the banks but not for the people who will wake up to Red Saturday, which will lead to Red Sunday, Red Monday and so on. As the old joke goes, “These sales are gonna save me into bankruptcy.”

The debt management website says about one third of shoppers rack up credit card debt on Black Friday.

Finance charges on their credit cards can easily wipe out any discounts they received at Black Friday sales.

I also disagree with Kain’s theory about shopping locally.

If consumers spend 20% more purchasing an HDTV from a local retailer, they’ll have 20% less money to spend at local restaurants and coffee shops. Refusing to shop at chains simply because they’re chains may result in more money in the pockets of local retailers, but it may end up taking money out of other local businesses.

This strikes me as a scare tactic. I’d rather just not buy the HDTV. The only way that large chains will begin to treat their employees as is they are possibly something approximating human beings is for consumers to speak with their wallets. As the lopsided distribution of wages in corporations demonstrates (CEOs at Russian Czar level and average worker at Southern sharecropper), helping these companies make money helps only a small fraction of people.

The Tea Party is countering the Occupy protest with “BuyCott Black Friday.” So, a group upset with the tremendous U.S. national debt supports rampant overspending? I guess logic wilts in the face of spite. Shouldn’t these groups be in accord? Big business is — and has proven to be — as destructive as big government.

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Posted by on November 24, 2011 in Capitalism, Social Commentary


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Roots Welcome Michele Bachmann to ‘Fallon’ With ‘Lyin’ Ass Bitch’ |

Roots Welcome Michele Bachmann to ‘Fallon’ With ‘Lyin’ Ass Bitch’ |

Roots Welcome Michele Bachmann to ‘Fallon’ With ‘Lyin’ Ass Bitch’ |

In a supreme act of crudeness, the house band for “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon,” The Roots, chose to play the Fishbone song “Lyin’ Ass Bitch” as GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann walked on stage.

There’s been an ongoing debate as to how politicians should be treated on late night talk shows. Should they be grilled with tough questions as if they’re on “Meet the Press” or should they be allowed to pitch their product while the smiling host offers some good-natured ribbing that serves to humanize them? The latter is consistent with how any other celebrity guest is received. The former is probably well beyond the skill set of a late night talk show host.

I’m not a fan of Bachmann but if I took leave of my senses and invited her to my house, I’d extend her an appropriate degree of respect. I might not break out my favorite Tuscan red but I wouldn’t serve her some nasty, vinegar-tasting mess from a box. I definitely wouldn’t call her a “bitch.”

The media mostly considers this a puckish prank on The Roots’ part. This is a curious response to such flagrant disrespect of not just a woman but of a sitting member of Congress.

That could just be the fuddy-duddy in me, though. I’m sure if David Letterman’s band had played Tribe Called Quest’s “Sucka Nigga” as Herman Cain walked on stage, the fall out would be about the same.

By the way, Fishbone’s “Lyin’ Ass Bitch” provided the background vocal riff for Prince’s 1995 “Billy Jack Bitch.”



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Jonathan Chait on Liberal Disappointment — New York Magazine

Jonathan Chait on Liberal Disappointment — New York Magazine.

Jonathan Chait in New York Magazine asks “when did liberals become so unreasonable,” regarding their expectations for a Democratic president, which to me is like asking when did vegetarians become so unreasonable about the menu at Peter Luger Steakhouse.

Democrats have shifted more to the right as Republicans have shifted so far to the right they are in danger of falling off the edge of the world or becoming liberals — depends on whether you believe in Hellenistic politics. Obama is far more center-right than 1988’s Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis, and George H.W. Bush, the Republican nominee that year, would be booed off the stage at any of this year’s GOP primary debates.

The twist is that no matter how much liberal weight Democrats lose, the conservatives see only bloated, big government Marxists. Continued efforts to compromise or receive conservative approval will only leave Democrats politically and philosophically emaciated husks of themselves.

The arguable lesson from the Faustian bargain that Democrats keep making is that they tend to be too concerned about winning to actually ever win. Would it make a difference if the Democratic left had the same ideological rigor as the Republican right? Or would you just wind up with a Frankenstein monster that looked like Obama, Boehner, and Bachmann? That certainly didn’t work for the Superfriends.


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Posted by on November 21, 2011 in Capitalism, Political Theatre


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How do you end a revolution? PR, insults, and soap…

So, in the truly clueless category is this article from Slate:

A financial services lobbying firm floats $850,000 plan to undermine Occupy Wall Street protests.

That’s a lot of money to stop the efforts of people with no money. That’s about a dozen jobs right there. I’m reminded of the line from “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”: “If he’d just pay me what he’s spending to stop me from robbing him, I’d stop robbing him.”

According to MSNBC’s “Up With Chris Hayes,” lobbying firm Clark Lytle Geduldig & Cranford sent a memo to the American Bankers Association with an outline for the plan, which suggests, among other things, doing “opposition research” on the Occupy movement in order to help construct “negative narratives” about protesters and the politicians who support them.

Meanwhile, GOP presidential candidates are already doing their part. Newt Gingrich said the Occupy protesters need to “get a job” and “take a bath.”

“All the Occupy movement starts with the premise that we all owe them everything,” Gingrich said at the Thanksgiving Family Forum in Iowa, as noted by Igor Volsky at ThinkProgress. “They take over a public park they didn’t pay for, to go nearby to use bathrooms they didn’t pay for, to beg for food from places they don’t want to pay for, to obstruct those who are going to work to pay the taxes to sustain the bathrooms and to sustain the park, so they can self-righteously explain they are the paragons of virtue to which we owe everything.”

As touching a sentiment this is for a presidential candidate to express at the “Thanksgiving Family Forum,” it seems to have a few fundamental problems: There’s the “us vs. them” mentality combined with the misrepresentation of the movement’s goals and the flat-out erroneous assertion that the protesters didn’t contribute to the public parks in which they are encamped. That’s why they are called “public” parks. Moreover, it’s disturbing to think that people can work and pay taxes for years but once they lose their jobs and dare to express frustration at a system that is not the least bit interested in fixing the economy it helped collapse, their so-called leaders will dismiss them as subhuman.

According to Gingrich, they should “get a job right after taking a bath.” It should reassure the unemployed in this country that it’s really that simple. All you need is a punchy cover letter and Dial.

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Posted by on November 20, 2011 in Capitalism, Political Theatre


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Let them work at McDonald’s…

Reading this NPR piece on the Occupy Wall Street protests, I came upon a true “let them eat cake” moment:

One man, who declined to give his name, but said he has worked on Wall Street for nine years, just shook his head. He was wearing a grey wool coat and his hair was neat and combed back. He stood at that corner for a while.

“This is ridiculous,” he said. “I just don’t understand why they’re not out trying to find jobs.”

He said he works 75 to 80 hours a week, so he deserves to be part of the one percent. He says he chose a degree in finance so he could make a lot of money.

I told him what Nathan Storey had told me. He was laid off in 2008 and still couldn’t find a job.

The man shook his head.

“He could get jobs at McDonald’s,” he said. He conceded however that minimum wage isn’t much money and he said he was willing to pay more taxes.

But he said he truly believes if you want to make money in this country, you can work hard and do that.

“This is the land of opportunity,” he said.

There appears to be a disconnect in the anonymous gentleman’s statement that he entered finance so he “could make a lot of money” and his assertion that if you “want to make money in this country, you can work hard and do that.” Yes, “the land of opportunity” is the U.S.’s advertising slogan but that is as relevant in practice as “The King of Beers” is for Budweiser.

His McDonald’s comment is both unoriginal and condescending, as if working in the fast-food industry is a viable option for people who have trouble finding jobs. Sure, many companies are calluously choosing not to interview job applicants who are unemployed — their way of capitalizing further on the poor job market — but having McDonald’s on the resume won’t improve the situation.

He should also know that a bad economy usually doesn’t trickle down. It’s the jobs near the bottom of the 99 percent that are the first to fall. Why does he suppose there are all these job opportunities at McDonald’s? Or does he think any reasonably educated person is preferable to the usual applicants at the fast-food chain? If so, then what are they supposed to do if what used to be the middle class takes their jobs — find work as medical school cadavers?

But let’s propose that there are McDonald’s positions for anyone who wants one. The federal minimum wage is $7.25. Even if you had the opportunity to work 75 to 80 hours a week (you won’t, as you’d be eligible for benefits and overtime), that’s about $30K a year. You’ll be exhaisted and won’t see your family but you’ll be content with the knowledge that you can provide them with so little.

Meanwhile, after nine years, our guy on Wall Street is possibly making around $300 to $500K. That breaks down to around $100 an hour at a 75/80-hour work week, which is slightly more rewarding. He can also get sick once in a while and send his kids to college.

Obviously, our economy can’t work if everyone is either in the finance or fry-making industry. It’s also telling that there’s no other default job that people like this guy can mention. The underlying message is “go away, stop bothering me with your problems, and serve me.”

There is a difference between having a middle-class work ethic and being an all-day, licked down to the center of the Tootsie Roll pop sucker. It’s like being the doting boyfriend while your girlfriend is fooling around with your best friend, brother, uncle, father, and family priest. It can get to the point that even the noblest person would rather die annoying the 1 percent than quietly serve them for the off chance of a pat on the head.

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Posted by on November 19, 2011 in Capitalism, Social Commentary


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Coach Memories…

Even before the Penn State scandal, I’ve never fully trusted coaches. If you’re like me — and for your sake, I sincerely hope not, you always had a slightly antagonistic relationship with your gym coaches. Gym was that special hour of the day when jocks got to feel better about themselves, cute girls got to vex boys who watched them gradually fill out their gym clothes each day, and the unathletically inclined got to humiliate themselves in pointless fitness tests that probably inspired our current interrogation techniques.

When I was in seventh grade, Mr. Clue, fit the stereotype of the sort of odd gym teacher to every inch of his painted-on, Richard Simmons shorts. You might ask, “What kind of guy teaches gym to 12 year olds in short shorts?” Well, the kind of guy who announces to the male students that he’s going to start keeping the gym towels in his office. Apparently, there had been a rash of towel thefts. It didn’t make sense to us either. Keep in mind that showering around other boys was traumatic enough. “The Exorcist” wasn’t as frightening as the first time you did this. None of us wanted to add the prospect of racing into Coach Clue’s office dripping wet for a towel.

After a brief huddle and discussion, our representive told Coach Clue that we didn’t want to do this. He insisted. Kids were apparently selling gym towels in Chinatown or something like that. Our response was to stop showering after gym. Problem solved. Not really, as the next week, Coach Clue gave a stirring lecture on the value of hygiene. At this point, I had no choice but to tell my mother. She was horrified and wondered why I didn’t tell her sooner. I recall saying that I didn’t fully trust my own judgment about what was appropriate or not — after all, I’d though breaking that vase was a good idea.

I’m not sure what my mother did but we didn’t have to go into Coach Clue’s office for towels anymore.

Two years later, I learned the value of procrastination from Coach Stroller. Mr. Stroller looked like one of the officers from “C.H.I.P.S” — blonde hair, sunglasses, stoic gaze. My freshman year of high school, I was dealt the cruel hand of having first period gym. That’s a nightmare. No 14 year old should wear sweat pants publically until about 5 pm each day when his body is almost behaving normally.

Coach Stroller tried to add a bit of academia to gym class so you had to take notes while he gave a lecture on some sport or other. One Friday, Coach Stroller asked the class if we wanted to take notes on football today or on Monday. The class went with Monday. Why not put it off until after the weekend? However, I had steeled myself for note-taking on Friday. My thought was to get it over with and enjoy “Golden Girls” on Saturday. But I was outvoted.

The next day, Coach Stroller was arrested for having an affair with a student. We never had to take those notes. This was a tragedy, of course, and I felt for the student, but I was very glad not to have to take those notes.

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Posted by on November 16, 2011 in Social Commentary


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Recurring Feature: Herman Cain says more things that don’t make sense…

I neglected to include this gem in my previous piece on Herman Cain’s recent GQ interview:

CAIN:… I grew up in the South during the civil rights movement. The Democrats co-opted the credit for the Civil Rights Act of 1964. But if you go back and look at the history, a larger percentage of Republicans voted for that than did Democrats. But a Democrat president signed it, so they co-opted credit for having passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

This would make sense if you ignored history — just as Godfather’s Pizza would be the best in the country if you excluded pizzas from New York, Chicago, and California. Oh, and Domino’s, Little Caesars, Pizza Hut, and DiGiorno.

From the actual Congressional vote:

Of the 420 members who voted, 290 supported the civil rights bill and 130 opposed it. Republicans favored the bill 138 to 34; Democrats supported it 152-96. It is interesting to note that Democrats from northern states voted overwhelmingly for the bill, 141 to 4, while Democrats from southern states voted overwhelmingly against the bill, 92 to 11.

It is also disingenuous for Cain to compare the Republicans of the 1960s to the Tea-Party-co-opted far-right group of today. The Rockefeller Republicans are no more. Much of this was due to Richard Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” of 1968 — “efforts to use race as a wedge issue — on matters such as desegregation and busing — to appeal to white southern voters,” for which then-Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman actually apologized.

“By the ’70s and into the ’80s and ’90s, the Democratic Party solidified its gains in the African American community, and we Republicans did not effectively reach out,” Mehlman says in his prepared text. “Some Republicans gave up on winning the African American vote, looking the other way or trying to benefit politically from racial polarization. I am here today as the Republican chairman to tell you we were wrong.”

To borrow from the Godfather of Soul, the Godfather of Pizza insists on “talking loud and saying nothing.”

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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Political Theatre


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It’s Official: Herman Cain Is a Jerk…

Presidential candidate Herman Cain apparently confused GQ with Maxim given his comments in a recent interview with the men’s magazine.

Chris Heath: What can you tell about a man by the type of pizza that he likes?

Herman Cain: [repeats the question aloud, then pauses for a long moment] The more toppings a man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is.

Chris Heath: Why is that?

Herman Cain: Because the more manly man is not afraid of abundance. [laughs]

Devin Gordon: Is that purely a meat question?

Herman Cain: A manly man don’t want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza.

According to Cain, a manly man also hasn’t had a bowel movement since 1978. I might not question the motives of someone else who used the word “sissy” in the 21st Century but I’m less inclined to do so in Cain’s case, given his statements on gays.

(By the way, this Piers Morgan interview with Cain makes me smile wider than Marilyn in “Bus Stop.”)

Chris Heath: Why do you think that most black Americans traditionally vote Democrat?

Herman Cain: The reason is because many of them are discouraged to even consider an idea or a candidate that’s not Democrat. They are brainwashed to not consider an alternative idea if they perceive you as a Republican.

Chris Heath: Who’s doing the brainwashing?

Herman Cain: The Democrats.

If Democrats are capable of brainwashing on this scale, then how did they lose the House in 2010? Why haven’t they conquered Poland? Is Cain’s plan to woo the black vote to state that we are feeble-minded buffoons who Democrats have manipulated for almost 50 years? That makes as much sense as selecting “Move Bitch (Get Out the Way)” as your wedding song.

Could Cain consider for a moment that Republican policies — not just on civil rights but on social programs that would disproportionately impact minorities — might play some factor in the party’s inability to effectively reach black voters? Or perhaps blacks don’t enjoy ads like this:

Or this:

Once done insulting blacks, Cain stated that if fellow candidate Michele Bachmann was an ice-cream flavor, she’d be “tutti-frutti.” Classy.

Devin Gordon: Do you think that there is a greater tendency among the Muslim faith for … extremism?

Herman Cain: That would be a judgment call that I’m probably not qualified to make, because I can’t speak on behalf of the entire Muslim community. I have talked with Muslims that are peaceful Muslims. And I have had one very well known Muslim voice say to me directly that a majority of Muslims share the extremist views.

Chris Heath: A majority?

Herman Cain: Yes, a majority.

Devin Gordon: Do you think he’s right?

Herman Cain: Yes, because that’s his community. That’s his community. I can’t tell you his name, but he is a very prominent voice in the Muslim community, and he said that.

Chris Heath: I just find that hard to believe.

Herman Cain: I find it hard to believe.

Chris Heath: But you’re believing it?

Herman Cain: Yes, because of the respect that I have for this individual. Because when he told me this, he said he wouldn’t want to be quoted or identified as having said that.

Alan Richman: Are you talking about the Muslim community in America? Or the world?

Herman Cain: America. America.

This is the sort of thing that makes me wish Rachel Maddow was right and the Cain campaign is just a “performance art project.”

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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Political Theatre


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Music Flashback: The Lingering Influence of Milli Vanilli…

Back in the late 1980s, when the world almost trusted Germany again, record producer Frank Farian discovered model/dancers Rob Pilatus and Fabrice Morvan in a Munich nightclub and decided to have them front his band Milli Vanilli.

Farian believed the actual singers on what became the “Girl You Know It’s True” album (a title that would prove to have certain dramatic irony) were not marketable. However, it’s hard to imagine them proving more of a laughingstock than Rob and Fab, who were ridiculed frequently for their curious dance moves and Whoopi Goldberg fright wigs.

Milli Vanilli won the 1990 Best New Artist Grammy, which was later revoked when it was revealed that the duo was a fraud. That always seemed curious to me because the actual music was legitimate. Why not give the Grammy to the poor schmuck singing for them?

Later that year, George Michael embraced the Milli Vanilli concept in his “Freedom ’90” video but this was the polar extreme of vanity. Michael was so attractive he felt burdened by it and refused to appear in the videos for his “Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1” album so that his music could stand on its own. The debut single, “Praying for Time,” was just white lyrics against a black background. I guess they decided to jazz things up for the follow-up.

Eddie Murphy in “Delirious” commented that all you had to do was “sing” but the MTV Generation had ensured that vocal talent alone was not sufficient if you had a face for radio rather than video. Live performances were now just extensions of the music video.

One of my favorite singers is Martha Wash, who had a memorable hit in the early 1980s — “It’s Raining Men” — as one half of The Weather Girls. The song has been covered multiple times but never equaled.

By the 1990s, the marketing geniuses also declared her appearance unacceptable. They were idiots for several reasons: One, Wash is a beautiful woman, but I concede that all that is subjective. However, the “marketable image” position implies that only heterosexual men are buying the records or watching the videos. Maybe people who look like Wash would appreciate seeing someone similar to themselves in a video rather than a model mindlessly voguing while mouthing the words. Unfortunately, C+C Music Factory went with the latter option when it released its video for 1990’s “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now).”

Wash sued to receive proper credit in the video. She later sued Black Box for pulling the same racket on the three songs for which she provided lead vocals — “Everybody Everybody” (I’ve left instructions for the song to be played at my funeral),”Strike It Up,” and “I Don’t Know Anybody Else.” Wash’s actions had a permanent impact on the industry, making it mandatory to properly identify the vocalists in a CD and video.

Burned so badly by all of this, I at first thought Sheryl Crow was a fraud when I saw her “All I Wanna Do” video in 1994. She seemed too cover girl attractive than the girl next door I envisioned in my head when listening to the song on the radio.

In some ways, the Milli Vanilli/Martha Wash controversies were a more innocent time when a record company wouldn’t dare simply present attractive but untalented performers and expect a gullible audience to willingly pay money for their awful music. The industry would soon get over that as evidenced by the careers of The Spice Girls and Britney Spears.

The Grammys had no problem giving Spears an award in 2005. Incidentally, I think the reason the audience is applauding in the above clip is because that’s the only way Spears would release their families.

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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Pop Life, Social Commentary


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