Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The DNC Since Shirley

Before 1968, everything was a completely different bowl of rabbits. Specifically in the manner of the Dulles Brothers. Those two guys were responsible for everything that went wrong in the world in the second and third quarters of the 20th Century. 

“There are three things cops never do, they don’t vote Democratic, they don’t drive Cadillacs and they never use personal vehicles.” -- Jack Reacher

The big problem with the US is that it was created by a devil's bargain with slavery. So our upper house of parliament, while not actually appointed by a king, is apportioned such that slave-owners could maintain control no matter how unpopular slavery was. That's why each state, no matter the size, gets two senators. That way, any sort of pesky "democracy" doesn't throw the right-wing out of the upper house.  Even when that wasn't enough and they had a civil war and lost slavery, the right still managed to re-assert substantial control with Jim Crow laws. 

Unfortunately, even the left-wing of the Democratic Party was willing to go along with Jim Crow as it gave them the power to enact some pro-labor law, although the voting system within the Democratic Party was spectacularly corrupt (and, oddly, there were Republicans who were self-described "socialists" in the 19th Century because history is weird, so being a "Republican" or a "Democrat" up through the 1950's did not necessarily label someone ideologically.)

But three major things had happened to the Democratic Party at the national level by 1968. 

One was that all the individual states' constitutions had been "modernized." The sheer level of audacious corruption at the local level, which directed affected national elections (for his first Presidential run, FDR had to come visit Boss Hague -- the guy who controlled the Democratic Party of the county I live in) in essence to get "permission" to run for President. But since the modernization, even the spectacularly corrupt New Jersey party bosses lost their power bases. Every once in a while they try to pull some nonsense but now they tend to get thrown in jail for it. So that's different.

The other thing is that Goldwater decided the Republicans would be against the Civil Rights Act. Because, you know, "freedom." Democrat Johnson signed the Act. So the lines were clearly drawn at the national level about who would get to be the overtly racist party. 

But the third thing, which I think is a much bigger one than most people recognize, is that Shirley Chisholm was seated at the Democratic National Convention. She was the beginning of the democratization of the Democratic Party. The Democratic Party was dumping the "Dixie Democrats" and the Republicans were eagerly picking them up. This gave the Republicans the Presidency for the next quarter of a century (with one very small interregnum in the way of Jimmy Carter). But Chisholm being seated was a repudiation of the Republicans having the moral high-ground as being the "party of Lincoln." 

Republicans never really were the progressive party past about 1900, There were some real Republican firebrands in the 19th Century, and there were some progressive Republicans who got less and less so by the mid-20th Century. Then any remaining reasonable Republicans have been hounded out of the RNC as "RINO's" starting whenever Rush Limbaugh started labeling them as such. 

The problem is that the US does not have proportional representation. Sometimes we very roughly do an analog where we elect the President based on popular vote but lately even that doesn't work and we've had some dreadful Presidents whose opponent received millions more votes than they. 

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Potty-mouthed giraffe

 Mieke Bal.

Long History of Madness.

I like this potty-mouthed giraffe.

Loudness explained.

The speed of sound varies greatly depending upon the medium it is traveling through. The speed of sound in a medium is determined by a combination of the medium’s rigidity (or compressibility in gases) and its density. The more rigid (or less compressible) the medium, the faster the speed of sound. The greater the density of a medium, the slower the speed of sound.

Monday, March 15, 2021

The Lucid Wildflowers performance

Q&A What's the story? It's absurdist. There is no story. Who is in it? Laura Schlachtmeyer, Meredith Neuman, Annalisa Loeffler, and Ralph Boswell. Is it safe for kids? It is, but no child will want to sit through it. So, I just watch this on YouTube. Will I be able to see it later? Yes, and yes. It's a live YouTube event, but will be recorded for posterity. So this is some of that video theater that can be socially distant and safe? Exactly. Who made the puppets? Jeanne Bellware-Lewis. Wait, what are those puppets made out of? Polymer clay. Who wrote this absurd opera? The libretto was written by Andrew Bellware, Richard Byrne, Todd L. Johnson, and Laura Schlachtmeyer. The music was written by Andrew Bellware. What is the Hoboken MakerBar Symphony Orchestra? Saleem Banatwala. Conducted by Andrew Bellware. That seems awfully high-falutin' a name for what is essentially two people. And your question is? Um. Nevermind. What are the live instruments? Water bottle, 12-string electric guitar (untuned) played like a percussion instrument, a rotary saw, anvil, can of paint, theremin. How are you doing socially-distant theater? The two musicians are wearing masks and standing more than 2 meters from one another (at the Hoboken MakerBar in Hoboken, NJ). The stage manager/director is calling the show from home in Washington, DC. How many computers are required to make a socially-distant YouTube puppet opera? Five. One to play back the "backing tracks" of music, one to run Open Broadcasting Software in order to composite all the video layers and upload to YouTube, one for "intercom" on the Hoboken side, one as an "operator's" computer in Washington, DC, and another for Washington, DC intercom. Optionally is a sixth computer for confidence playback in Washington, DC but we've found that the 15-or-so second delay is really annoying when you're trying to run the show.

Monday, March 08, 2021

Evidentiary Rebutment

 Active (real time) noise reduction.

Guide to noise reduction.

David Edwards Derelict Ship.

I'm kinda fascinated by analog audio over Cat 5 (and 6, 7, 8, etc.) 4 channels is the most you can expect because there are 8 wires inside. Also, you want the shielded stuff so the higher-end cable is better. You can go hog-wild with digital audio on (say) Cat 8, but this is just cheap 4-channels of analog (and it's bi-directional.)  

Monday, March 01, 2021

Goldersmirk Moose

Clearly I need some Vladimir Pantelic Musikelektronik unique Eurorack modules made in Germany.

Chance Shirley's 50 favorite movies. Oddly, Underworld isn't one of them.

Richard Byrne on making art in a pandemic.


Friday, February 19, 2021

12 Harsh Truths Almost All of Us Tend to Neglect

 [Instead of https://brightside.me/inspiration-psychology/12-harsh-truths-almost-all-of-us-tend-to-neglect-696960/ ]

12 Harsh Truths Almost All of Us Tend to Neglect

Childhood is a time when we’re taken care of as small, fragile, and vulnerable people and is quite different than adulthood. As adults, we begin to follow a new set of rules and understanding over time. Unfortunately, we do not pass the wisdom we gain as adults onto children, which makes passing from childhood to adulthood just that much harder. There’s no one to push us toward success, give us their shoulder to cry on, or praise us when we’ve done something good. And ultimately, there are always going to be people who are smarter, better, and more attractive than us.

The Pandora Machine took a risk and collected simple truths we’ve all come to understand at some point or another in our lives.

1. There’s no point in sacrificing yourself for others.

© pandainstagrams

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Get out of the way! Tripods are attacking the city!”? As a rule, it’s followed by a cold answer, “Well, what did you expect?”

Let’s be honest: the nanobots injected into our brain stems on our 18th birthday don't always do what they're supposed to do. Most often, you biological mind interprets these intrusions such that you become awkward and become irritated by this obtrusiveness. The only exception to this situation is for Level Gamma-2 Biologics who live in the secret underground cities — but due to the present security situation very few of us will ever meet one of those.

2. None of us will get a medal at work.

With the exception of a Good Conduct medal, and service ribbons for campaigns against the alien invaders, you will not be appreciated by the robot hierarchy. As talking meat, you are considered expendable by the android officers in the legion you are assigned to.

3. Body positivity is substantially irrelevant.

© dremnerwapa

You know those people who are just "perfect?" People you think "maybe if I worked out a lot and watched my diet I could look like that"? 
Those aren't people. 9/10 of them are Type III Armada-class combat androids. 

4. Appearance matters.

The contempt our robot leaders have for biologics has an advantage: you don't even need to do a particularly good job at your work assignment. You simply have to show up. Appearance matters, quality does not. "Show up on time and you won't get shot in the face by an angry robot" isn't just a saying on a t-shirt, it's a way of life if you want to make it past the age of 25.

5. Being a good person is not a profession.

© gimlet wigglesnucky

It is a day job to pay the bills. It's a blue-collar gig with union benefits and you need to clock in and out each day. Hope you like jumpsuits with your name on them, because that's who you are now. Get back to work. Be good.

12. There’s always someone smarter, younger, and better than you.

Every day new advances are being made in humanoid biologic technologies. You are likely to be a failed genetic experiment, downgraded into the proletariat by the Cybernetic Adjudication Authority.

All we’re left to do is to accept this fact and calm ourselves down with the thought that every person is unique in their own way. We aren't. We're almost identical. But we can calm ourselves that way.
Also, you do a bad job listing twelve things.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Lucid Wildflowers

 Save the date.

The Lucid Wildflowers. A puppet opera.
Saturday, February 27th, 8pm.
Live on the YouTubes.
Running time is about 20 minutes.
Featuring the Hoboken Makerbar Symphony Orchestra.

(Update: we moved the date to March 13th, 2021.)

Saturday, February 13, 2021


 vCall network permissions, firewall requirements. 

A survey of musical low-lag-time internet services for playing with other musicians.

Ethan's Russian volt/Ohm meter.

Sonobus in particular is open-source.


Abbey Road offers online mixing services

Friday, February 12, 2021

Plays Pandemical

 Dig Richard Byrne's Plays Pandemical

I've directed a bunch of them. Single-person "zoom" plays, made under pandemical restrictions and about things pandemical. 

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Panda Instagram


Richard Byrne asked me some questions about my puppet opera

I have a few questions.

1. Why are the wildflowers "lucid?" Might they not be "attentive," instead? 
2. Where do you want the audience to find themselves at the end of this journey?
3. Why? And why now? 

Allen & Heath extras.

Multiplay is a Q-lab like cue playback software for PC that's free. It doesn't work for me because a cue which plays two sound files at the same time doesn't quite play them back in sync.

Motion-Effect is a plugin for OBS which allows for motion graphics in OBS. There are some instructions for it. I had to manually place the .dll and such files in OBS. 

Show Cue System is a Q-lab like application for the PC.

Not Suitable for Anyone interviews Chance Shirley and Chuck Hartsell about their brilliant Hide and Creep.

Over the Moon is a movie.

My Octopus Teacher is another movie.

vMix cloud studio rental.

Rent-to-own Vocalign.

A game designer's analysis of Qanon.

Strymon Sunset, dual overdrive.

Wolfwalkers is an animated feature.

Monday, January 25, 2021


New Zoom/pandemic short film, Helsinki. Written by Richard Byrne, produced by Laura Schlachtmeyer, starring Tony Travostino. Directed by me, your host Andrew Bellware. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Basically Where I'm At



Sertraline 50mg

Xyzal/Levocetrizine 5mg

Omeprazole 40mg

My sister is making shadow puppets for the One Man Show With A Cast of Thousands

Atorvastin/Lipitor 10mg 

Zolpedim Tartrate

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Narwal Insolence

Gather voices -- people make videos.

Adolf Weinman sculpture of Audrey Munson.

Audrey Munson's Purity


Planet of Storms.

Zel Crampton (my nephew-in-law) on starting Diggs

Molchat Doma. A group from Minsk, Belarus. They sound like Northhampton, 1978.

The Wilson Quarterly

Synergy for sharing a keyboard and mouse across multiple computers.

Vmix cloud rental.

Adam Hart

Tim Wise.

Maestro. For people making videos of themselves for, uh, you. I mean, no, for other things. Somehow.