Gas Prices, NPR and Steely Dan

The thing is:

Gas prices would be a non issue if America weren’t so dependent on fossil fuels.

I love NPR, but they made a series of management mistakes from their handling of the Juan Williams situation to their hiring of the loose cannon Ron Schiller, as chief fundraiser who unwisely met with two men posing as members of a Muslim organization.  Schiller launched an unprofessional tirade against the Republican Party and the Tea Party movement in an effort to secure a large donation from the group. Meanwhile, the men had been secretly taping Schiller and in fact were not Muslims but rather conservative activists organized by the infamous prankster James O’Keefe.  Schiller later apologized and said that he didn’t believe the things he had said, which did not help matters.  Both he and NPR’s CEO Vivian Schiller, no relation, have since stepped down.

I wonder if James O’Keefe is related to Georgia? His brand of politically motivated royal scamming seems to be an accepted form of hard ball today.Let’s see, first it was the attack on Acorn, then Planned Parenthood, followed by a counter punch on the left to Governor Walker.  Walker took a call from a man posing as a billionaire Republican donor.  Walker basically admitted to a coordinated plan to destroy the unions, and his comments went viral.   And now NPR.  I’d say the right is not in the right, but winning the merry prankster battle.

The original Royal Scam was a Steely Dan composition. “Steely Dan was here for real” was carved into a table in a classroom at Bard College.  I know, I saw it and so did my youngest daughter. And the thing is, Steely Dan really did go to Bard; Chevy Chase too.

6 Annoyances

  1. Flipping around with the remote only to find commercials and extreme volume variance.  Thank god for the mute.  I mute all commercials after I’ve heard them once.
  2. The Democrats calling 1 Republican vote evidence of bipartisan support for health care reform.  The Dems don’t even have partisan support.  And the Blue Dogs – tell me, how can they even call themselves Democrats?  They seem to have more in common with the Republicans.
  3. A dumb smart phone.  Mine has virtually no signal strength on the subway lines.  Not only can I not make a call, I can’t read the news, check e-mail or FB – nothing.  So I’m back to lugging a book with me on my morning commute, and frankly I don’t miss the news one bit.
  4. Mike happy T conductors trying to sound like flight attendants or DJs.   Come on, the stops are all prerecorded, just open and close the doors already and let’s get going.   Makes me think of REM’s “Driver 8“:  And the train conductor says “driver 8, take a break, driver 8 take a break, we can reach our destination, but we’re still aways away.”
  5. A hot toasted bagel served with tubs of cold butter on the side.  Dunkin Donuts is guilty of this crime.  I guess that’s why they’re called Dunkin Donuts and not Dunkin Bagels.  What’s worse, they waste so much plastic, serving a knife and a handful of tiny plastic tubs of butter per customer.   It would actually take the worker less time to slap on some butter than it does for them to pack the butter and plastic knife.  Notwithstanding the waste, it’s next to impossible to peel the covers off those tiny tubs.
  6. Artists sampling the classics.  I think it’s a bit of a Royal Scam if the sample is not credited or authorized.  Speaking of the LP by the same name, Kayne West sampled a riff from Steely Dan’s “Kid Charlemagne” in his song “Champion“.  Is it a rip-off or a tribute?  I can’t say I’m annoyed at the reference in this contemporary song, but I wonder how Walter Becker and Donald Fagen feel about it?