Link Riffs ~ 050506

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  • Black Hawk Down author Mark Bowden has a new book about President Carter and the hostage crisis. Bowden is a sharp guy who really knows his subjects, so this should be worth reading ~ http://online.wsj.com/article_print/SB114626252744139299.html ~ Especially since he observes that this incident is the first battle in our war against militant Islam.
  • Check out the lineup for Floydfest this year ~ http://www.floydfest.com/2006/perform.php?dir_id=2 ~ If you’ve never been you should really give it a try, even if none of the artists are familiar. The folks who organize this show and book the acts do an incredible job. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a big music event put together as perfectly as Floydfest.
  • I’ve always thought it was strange how pirates are romanticized. Pirates murder, terrorize and pillage, yet Disney makes family adventure movies about them and there are hundreds of pirate-themed toys for kids. There was some minor controversy over the "terrorist as hero" theme of the film V For Vendetta, though it’s really nothing more than a pirate movie on dry land (if we can consider England dry). So you say pirates aren’t really terrorists? This book about Barbary pirates might make you think again ~ http://online.wsj.com/article_email/article_print/SB114625886972839139-lMyQjAxMDE2NDI2OTIyNTk4Wj.html
  • Now for a couple of blogs I’ve been reading lately. I found this "centrist" blog by accident and love it. At first glance, Maggie’s Farm seems like it might be hippy-ish. But look again ~ http://maggiesfarm.anotherdotcom.com
    Pop Candy is Whitney Matheson’s great pop culture blog that’s a good one-stop source for the latest movie/TV/music/book/art/fashion/etc info. What’s amazing is the range she covers, from the mainstream to the underground ~ http://blogs.usatoday.com/popcandy
  • Whether you agree with his views or not, Neil Young writes great protest songs. His new album Living With War is 100% anti-Bush admin protest fueled by a cheap, clean alternative heavy guitar power source. You can spin through it for free here ~ http://www.neilyoung.com ~ And if it starts to piss you off after a while, just remember that Neil supported Ronald Reagan in ’84!
  • NPR Live Concert Series ~ http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4627437 ~ An amazing lineup of streaming live shows from Neko Case, Arctic Monkeys, Belle and Sebastian, Colin Meloy (from The Decemberists), Iron & Wine/Calexico, My Morning Jacket and several other semi-household names. All for free (for anyone who doesn’t pay income taxes or contribute to NPR).

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