Archive for May, 2007

New DVD on The Future of Mixtapes?

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007

What will happen with the future of mixtapes in the wake of the DJ Drama prosecution?
It is not clear but a new DVD may shed some light on the situation.

DVD available May 22nd (TODAY!)
Order Here



Exclusive interviews with Hip-Hop superstars Kanye West, G-Unit (Lloyd Banks, Young Buck, Tony Yayo), Chuck D., Lil’ Jon, Fabolous, David Banner, Xzibit, Kool DJ Red Alert, Ed Lover & Doctor Dre, DJ Clue, DJ Kay Slay, Danger Mouse, DJ Enuff and DJ Vlad.


An in-depth, unprecedented behind-the-scenes look into the gritty world of illegal Hop-Hop Mix tapes. There’s a battle brewing with the Mixtape DJs, Performers, Retailers and Buyers on one side and the multi-billion dollar record labels and copyright infringement authorities (RIAA) on the other. It’s a love/hate relationship and some have paid the price—jail, fines and more. Yet, mixtapes have become an important, even integral, part of the Hip-Hop culture, revolutionized the Hip-Hop music industry and changed the way we hear and buy Hip-Hop music. The financial stakes are extremely high. These entrepreneurial compilations are now the root of a new power struggle between the urban streets and the traditional corporate music industry. This documentary will take you inside the riveting, unflinching dramas of this volcanic battle.

Running Time: 113 minutes
Rating: NR
Genre: Documentary

News Flash: Burger King Is Not Healthy

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007

Home of The Whopper
CSPI, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, is suing Burger King because they have trans fats in their food/. Trans fats aren’t healthy but they sure taste good.

In a press release for the lawsuit, CSPI stated that Burger King food may be unhealthy. The press release states some of the harmful effects of Burger King food; “

Numerous fried and non-fried foods at Burger King have alarming levels of trans fat, according to CSPI. A King-size Onion Rings has 6 grams of trans fat. A regular-size order of Chicken Tenders with a large order of French fries has 8 grams of trans. A Sausage Biscuit with a large order of Hash Browns has an astounding 18 grams of trans fat�more than someone should consume in 9 days.

Unlike other fats, the artificial trans fats found in partially hydrogenated oil exact a double whammy on arteries by raising the LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and simultaneously lowering the HDL (“good”) cholesterol. Increasing trans fat consumption by just 2 percent of calories is associated with as much as a 23 percent increased risk of developing coronary heart disease, according to researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health . Both the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee and the American Heart Association recommend getting no more than 1 percent of calories from trans fat, which works out to just two grams of trans fat for someone on a 2,000-calorie daily diet. That two grams is about what one could expect from the smaller amounts of naturally occurring trans fat in milk and meat products, leaving virtually no room for anything partially hydrogenated, according to CSPI.”

Trans fats are bad for you but there is no clear reason why a lawsuit is necessary to force companies to stop serving fast food products that contain trans fats. Taco Bell, KFC and Taco Bell have stopped using trans fats. McDonald’s is transitioning towards removing trans fats from their foods. CSPI should drop the silly lawsuit and allow the market to work.

Please Let Tupac Rest In Peace

Thursday, May 17th, 2007

Music stores may soon be filled with more low quality Tupac albums.

Tupac Shakur’s mother has partnered up with a music publishing company that plans on releasing future Tupac releases.

Please no more Tupac releases. Each posthumous Tupac release seems to get worse and worse. The popular musical cultural memory is of Tupac doing cheesy covers of Phil Collins songs. It is time to let Tupac rest in peace.

Badly remixed releases of Tupac material is not something to look forward to on your Clear Channel owned “urban station.”

When people talk about bringing hip-hop back from the dead, no one in their right mind is suggesting that unmarketable recordings should be released.

Barry Bonds Set to Break Hank Aaron’s Record

Thursday, May 10th, 2007

Barry Bonds is only 10 home runs away from breaking Hank Aaron’s career home run record. Bonds seems to have only produced this result by being juiced up on steroids.

Bonds will have to pay the price for his steroid use though. Fans are rooting against Bond’s breaking the record. Bonds will also have to suffer the potential physical risk of using steroids.

The Military Is Afraid of The Internet

Thursday, May 3rd, 2007

The military was able to push out a number of stories in the media this week about the military’s development of several YouTube channels. The YouTube channel can be reached here. Lt. Col. Christopher Garver told the Los Angeles Times “This effort was not designed to combat what ends up on extremist Web sites.” Garver went on to say “But we understand that it is a battle space in which we have not been active, and this is a media we can use to get our story told.”

At the same time the military is requiring super strict regulations of blogs run by military personnel. Under the new rule military bloggers would have to contact their superior officer before each posting. This will have the effect of reducing the postings of miliblogs to a trickle. The military is using security as a scapegoat for this crackdown but as Julian Sanchez points out there the Army’s own Combined Arms Center concluded that there were few security grounds for concern. Posting of classified materials is already a crime. The soldiers that are posting classified material will likely continue posting thus the military that has decided in a war whose length will be determined by public opinion that they will give up on the blog PR war.

Internet Radio Can Be Saved

Thursday, May 3rd, 2007

It is not to late to save internet radio from the royalty fee structure that is about to be imposed. Congressmen Jay Inslee (D-WA) and Donald Mazullo (R-IL) introduced H.R. 2060 the Internet Radio Equality Act which would save internet radio from the new excessively high fee structure. H.R. 2060 currently has 33 cosponsors.

Proposing new legislation was the first step but would not have meant much if the legislation is not enacted. Thankfully, the Copyright Royalty Board has extended the date on which fees are due from May 15th to July 15th. Congress now has the opportunity to consider this legislation. With enough response Congress may feel pressed to act on the issue now.

This legislation is key to keeping internet radio alive. Jake Wade of SaveInternetRadio reasons that this legislation is key to saving internet radio, “Millions of Internet radio listeners, webcasters and artists are fighting for the very future of the vibrant industry they depend on, and today they brought that fight to Congress,” Jake Ward from SaveNetRadio said. “The threat looming over Internet radio is very real and will not discriminate. The royalty rate increase imposed by the Copyright Royalty Board will bankrupt small webcasters immediately and put larger webcasters out of business in the coming months. No one benefits from an increase in royalty rates that will bankrupt the industry. As Pandora’s Joe Kennedy has said repeatedly, “dead webcasters pay no royalties.”

The foreign mango menace

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007

Katherine Mangu-Ward points out at Reason’s blog that the the United States has just opened American markets to mangoes imported from India.

This will create a large new market for India. America will soon begin allowing the importation of up to 250,000 tonnes of mangoes a year.

The United States embassy states in a press release that the demand for Indian mangoes in the United States partly due to America’s Indian immigrant community.

According to the Hindu News Update Service At a press conference at the Embassy of India where the visiting Indian Foreign Secretary Shivshanker Menon was present, Ambassador Ronen Sen spoke of the mangoes’ issue as a symbolic and substantive move in bilateral relations.

Symbolically, Sen argued it was emblematic of the relationship between the two countries.

MIMS: Certified One Hit Wonder

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007

The video is a boring flashy rap video and the song isn’t much better.

Half the lyrics in the song are Mims bragging about his previous hit single This Is Why I’m Hot. Mims has already established that he thinks he is hot it is time for a new act. Some MCs have both the rapping ability and the bravado sound to make a song interesting by just bragging and boasting, Mims does not have any great rap ability.

Mims will quickly be forgotten like many one hit wonder rappers who have come and gone over the years.

Turning the Corner in Iraq

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007

For almost four years now the military and the administration have repeated that we are about to turn the corner in Iraq. Or we are being told that the insurgency in Iraq is in its last throes or some other such crap. This sure is one long corner with no light at the end of the tunnel to add in another cliché.

Sure I’ve just made baseless rhetorical conjecture but the evidence does not look much brighter. In fact Iraq has seen a 91% rise in terrorist incidents over the last year. The number of terrorist incidents in Iraq rose from 3,468 in 2005 to 6,630 in 2006.

So the evidence seems to state that things are not getting better in Iraq. Yes, people are going to die in Iraq but why do they have to be Americans?

The Fiscal Costs of The Iraq War Add Up

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007

We will soon be approaching four years since the start of the war in Iraq and the bill is beginning to add up.

When the new funding for the war passes, the total will rise to $564 billion. McClatchy lists some of the other purchases that the government could make with the money being spent on Iraq:

“What could that kind of money buy?

A college education – tuition, fees, room and board at a public university – for about half of the nation’s 17 million high-school-age teenagers.

Pre-school for every 3- and 4-year-old in the country for the next eight years.”

Of course the government shouldn’t be spending any more money. This war has been paid for through increasing government debt. The large federal deficit has hurt the value of the U.S. dollar and increasing government debt leads to investment in government securities as opposed to capital investments that will stimulate the economoy.

Long term fiscal costs must be considered that will be needed to care for veterans. Four years of war produces veterans with needs that will have to be addressed for lifetimes.

Maybe a relatively small amount of money for peanut storage in exchange for hundreds of billions saved ending the war in Iraq.