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Friday, September 30, 2005

The Southern Takeover 

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I've commented several times previously on how the South has taken over hip hop. Without getting into a lengthy polemic about it here, let me just throw up some links to some of the latest joints coming out of Georgia, Texas and elsewhere below the Mason-Dixon line currently making noise:

- Purple Ribbon All-Stars feat. Big Bio, Killah Mike, Blackownded, C-Bone & Rock D "Kryptonite" (video: windows real audio: Windows Real download)

Read more about Big Boi's Purple Ribbon label: here, here, here and here.

Bonus Killer Mike joint:

- "A.D.I.D.A.S. (remix)" feat. Amil & JD - why did Sony never release this? The mind boggles. If anyone has this on 12" holla cos I've been looking for this for like over two years now and have never seen it even on ebay or as a bootleg.

BTW, I saw a trailer for the Outkast movie Idlewild last week and it's fccking SICK. Think Cotton Club-meets-Purple Rain-meets-Moulin Rouge-meets-Chicago. That might sound a tad Tey Ghey but trust me, it looks incredible. Plus the folks behind Ray and 8 Mile are gonna be distributing and promoting it so look for Outkast to conquer movies the same way they crushed the music industry. Just remember where you saw a behind-the-scenes peak at this movie first.

Meanwhile more ATL heat:

- Mr. Big Tyme feat. Tight "Check My Footwork" - the essential soundtrack when wearing your A-Town's.

- Maceo "Nextel Chirp" - undeniable club banger. Dunno about the sentiment behind his new single "Hoe Sit Down" though. I'm sure Rhymefest would have something to say about this one. Am I crazy to say that this Chirp joint sounds almost like a UK grime record or is it that those artists are so influenced by what's happening in Southern hip hop tight now?

- D4L "Laffy Taffy" - so bad it's good? Along with the Big Tyme and Maceo records this was running ATL radio when I was down there a month or so ago. Now re-released on Asylum, the label that brought Paul Wall from the internet to the masses. BTW is the Paul Wall joint any good cos I just got sent the new 12" feat. Mike Jones and I think it's kind of weak especially coming after the neutron bomb that was "Sittin Sideways." (update: never mind I just got the full length wax in the mail, so let me check it out and tell you for myself next week)

- Dem Franhise Boyz feat JD, Da Brat & Bow Wow "Oh I Think Dey Like Me (remix)" - I said a while back that the original to this was a guilty pleasure of mine. Same for the surprisingly solid remix.

- Three Six Mafia featuring Eightball & MJG & Young Buck "Stay Fly" - how can purist backpack nerds claim southern hip hop is not "real" hip hop when there's records like this? How many so-called "True school," underground hip hop records have transform scratching in their hooks like this? Possibly the best hip hop record out now by maybe the most underrated crew in hip hop. (stream download)

And BTW, I would have never called it but that kid Webbie's album is kind of hot. Shout to Sean Paul for putting me up on game.

And I got more. Stay tuned over the coming week or so for more heat from the South and beyond plus a special Too Short mp3 focus on his incredible Pimpin Inc. mixtape that just dropped. Meanwhile though, #10 and #9 on the countdown yesterday (plus we got the #1) - RESPECT.MY.GANGSTA!

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Monday, September 26, 2005

4 The Easy Way... 

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New sh-t!

"Take It Easy" - not what I would have predicted for their comeback. (via HHG)

Ghostface "Be Easy" (prod. Pete Rock) - the South is running things now but I still got love for classic sounding ish like this. Pretty Toney does it again. (via HHG)

Royal Flush feat. MOP "Worldwide Part II" - and speaking of classics, is this a worthy sequel to the original "Worldwide"?!

50 cent "Window Shopper" - and should De La Soul be mad at this one? (via Spine)

And speaking of Plugs 1, 2 and 3: Todd Kelly shines the spotlight on De La Soul.

"Elvis has left the building. And yet, some people keep looking for him...." - Dan Charnas on whites in hip hop.

Royce the 5'9" evidently not big in Japan.

While "Hip-Hop is NOT Culture" according to, the most provocative new online voice since BdotC.

That South music post I promised is coming later this week when I can squeeze it in.

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Saturday, September 24, 2005

"I done called for a shelter, I done called for help. There ain't none. No one answers...." 

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I'm not gonna be as comprehensive in my coverage of Hurricane Rita as I was with Katrina - I just don't have time the time right now. But y'all know where to go to get that realness. Here's few choice links to hold you down in the meantime though:

This first one is slightly outdated now that Rita is on the way but worth reading anyway: "Despite the good intentions and generosity of communities across the country and President Bush's promises of federal help, many Katrina victims would be better off if they actually were among those officially labeled refugees and accepted for resettlement by the United States, experts on the process say...." (Click here for more from "Refugee Groups Reaching Out to Victims of Hurricane" The New York Times)

"Four years and billions of dollars of planning, and guess what? We can't evacuate a single city worth a damn...." from AmericaBlog's "Texas is a total disaster" (click here for more)

Deja Vu all over again: "No Way Out: Tears, Anger As Some Try to Flee and Many Poor Are Stuck in Houston" (click here for more | related: and even more from Sploid)

And proof that Bush is simply in WAY over his head: "President Bush was supposed to land here [Texas] on Friday afternoon on the first stop of a tour intended to make clear that he was personally overseeing the federal government's preparations for Hurricane Rita's landfall. But the weather did not cooperate. It was too sunny...." Duke canceled a trip because it didn't make a good enough photo-op, WTF?! (Click here for more)

Kyoto Protocol blowback like a muh'fccker: "Super hurricanes the result of global warming according to a leading UK scientist" (click here for more)

BTW, it's official: it was flaws in the design and/or construction of the levee protection system, not the storm itself, that led to tragic flooding in New Orleans.

No wonder W is back on the sauce (allegedly).

My prayers go out to everyone in the Texas and Gulf Coast regions and especially those who had evacuated to Texas post-Katrina as they go through yet another harrowing experience so soon after their last one. Also before I forget, welcome Guardian readers.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Hustlers and Culture Warriors.... 

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Fcck Kate "Snowman" Moss, Zadie Smith is England's flyest-looking export.

I know y'all probably already heard these but just in case:

50 Cent "Hustler's Ambition" from Get Rich or Die Tryin' , the movie.

Pharrell Williams featuring Gwen Stefani "Have It Like That" - this joint is fccking crazy, seriously.

(both mp3's via Spine)

And something brand new: gutter, underground BK hip hop from my man Labba - "Take Y'all Out"

Pete Rock Invented the Remix?

Dip Set = Young Republicans

Crunk and Disorderly is on fire as usual.

The Times' Frank Rich on Zadie Smith's new book.

"BET doesn't Care About Black People" (via Young Rome)

And finally, welcome Soul Strut and Catchdubs readers.

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Monday, September 19, 2005

"To the extent the federal government didn't fully do its job right, I take responsibility...." 

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Wardance - the excellent new current affairs blog from the folks behind the Broke B-Boys mp3 blog.

A timeline of what happened when during the Hurricane Katrina storm and aftermath from Think Progress.

The Daily Kos on the many episodes of FEMA incompetence and ineptitude. (via the Sirotablog)

Also: this man almost died because of Bush's FEMA.

And it's not just Michael Brown, DHS chief Michael Chertoff needs to be fired too.

Meanwhile, compare the difference in how Bush communicated with Democratic La. governor Kathleen Blacno and Republican Ms. governor Haley Barbour.

Separate but Equal? Schooling Of Evacuees Provokes Debate
- this deserves a double WTF??

Jeff Chang on how reporters of color are being harassed and arrested in the Gulf Coast.

But finally, Katrina ushers in the return of Big Government. Meanwhile, Bush wants you to open your check book to help with the reconstruction... of Iraq! I guess we need to clean that up before we go into Syria.

I don't have time to keep up with it all though, so click here for links to the most up-to-date info on Katrina and the aftermath.

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Sunday, September 18, 2005

All Souled Out - Fall Edition 

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Some exclusive R&B and soul mp3's for dat ass:

- Anthony Hamilton "Can't Let Go" - brand new! ANTHONY.HAMILTON.IS.THE.MUH'FCCKIN'.TRUTH. Seriously, I mean this is that real black soul ish. (this download link will be available for a limited time only - get it while ya can.... Update: it's a wrap. Those who copped it, enjoy; the rest of y'all who slept too long, sorry but you're done - look for the album in December)

- Jaheim feat. D-Block "Make A N-gga Feel Hood" - the Teddy Pendergrass of the hip hop generation thug loves it out over the Teairra Mari beat with an assist from Jadakiss, Sheek Louch and some other (D-Block-affiliated?) dude Left Gunnz. Shout to (You Can Ask) Giz for the mp3 hook-up on this. Put this on your next Hood R&B mixtape.

- Razah feat. Fatman Scoop "I'm In Love With You" - one of my favorite R&B songs right now that Enuff and a few other DJ's on Hot 97 have been banging on their mixshows. Sounds like this would mix nice with Cassidy's "I'm a Hustler" (if that record is still getting played by anyone?).

- Toni Braxton "Take This Ring" - Toni gets her Amerie on with this comeback single. Isn't she getting a little too old to be still making these kind of records though?

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Friday, September 16, 2005

No time to Sleep 'N' Eat 

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It's been real hectic at work which explains the lack of new stuff around these parts this week. Post frquency might be down to 3-4 times/week on regular basis from here on out versus the usual 5-6, but we'll see how things pan out over the next few weeks.

Peace to my peoples at Room Service for a solid showcase of underground hip hop at BB King's last night. Even though I don't love their album as much as others, Little Brother tore it down (though I could do without the rest of their Justus League crew, frankly). The RS crew on the other hand were doing it real big: they had Lyor Cohen and other major honchos from Atlantic Records in the building to witness their roster's great underground hopes conquer the CMJ and industry-heavy crowd as well as label mate T.I. and MTV's Sway. You think if Elroy put a couple calls in maybe he could reverse BET's alleged decision to "ban" LB's "I'm Lovin' It" video. I know he had to have been impressed last night. The Minstrel Show is in-stores now.

Before there was Little Brother though... vintage unreleased De La Soul "My Mind State" - this sounds like it's from the 3 Feet High... era (?) f'real. (mp3 via Spine)

Jayoncé - I'm surprised the gossip media didn't come up with that one first.

Grippin' the Grain - Southern hip hop and porn, is there a better combination? 18 and over to click on that link please. (Southern hip hop mp3 special coming to the Kitchen real soon. What y'all know about that "Laffy Taffy"?)

More adult-ish ish:

"Kanye West cares about white people" - at least these ones, that is. Meet the men behind the sound on Late Registration: Jon Brion and Craig Bauer.

High school percussion band performing DJ Shadow. (spotted via Poplicks)

The best hip hop singles of 2005?

Finally, Nike Dunk SB sneakers designed by Common and celebrity shoe designers Krispy Klean. Already sold out, damn....

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Tuesday, September 13, 2005

"Lives were lost that did not need to be lost...." 

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As regular readers know, I've been preoccupied with the hurricane tragedy but there's been plenty of other stuff going on. A few things I missed along the way:

"Here’s the truth about Chief Justice Rehnquist you won’t hear on Fox News or from politicians. Chief Justice William Rehnquist set back liberty, equality, and human rights perhaps more than any American judge of this generation. His rise to power speaks volumes about the current state of American values."

Alan Dershowitz from "Telling the Truth About Chief Justice Rehnquist" (Huff Post)

Meanwhile, John Roberts' supreme court confirmation hearings have just begun but many of his key files have gone missing or been mislabeled after being reviewed by adminstration lawyers. Scary....

A legit power out just a little over two years after the nation's largest blackout made it clear that the national power grid infrastructure needed a serious injection of funding to be upgraded (hmm, just like the New Orleans levees...), one of Bush faux terror scares when his poll numbers dip or Al Qaeda testing the waters before making good on one of their terror warnings? Take your pick, it's even scarier....

Colin Powell admits he played himself with his WMD "presentation pitch" at the UN in the lead-up the Iraq war (and also turns on his former boss over his inept disaster response efforts down in the Gulf).

So getting back to Katrina:

Firing FEMA head Michael Brown was a good start but be clear, this failure stemmed from the top down. Newsweek breaks down "How Bush Blew it."

While NPR breaks down what went wrong before and after the storm (via Poplicks)

David Corn on the connection between Justice Rehnquist's Death and Hurricane Katrina.

Juan Cole compares the looting in Fallujah and New Orleans concludes that Bush cares deeply about the property of rich white people.

While probably related: the post-hurricane cronyism is already rampant.

I'd actually give Tom Delay the benefit of the doubt and assume he was trying to make some kids feel a little better about being in a terribile situation, but he still came off crazy with his recent comments. (Related: more compassionate conservatism in action - post Katrina)

'Racist' police blocked a bridge out of NOLA and forced evacuees back at gunpoint. Maybe I shouldn't be so tolerant after all....

An environmental experts alleges a cover-up and that "toxic waters 'will make New Orleans unsafe for a decade'."


"Experts say it’s only a matter of time before a major hurricane strikes New York City. When it comes, you may want to have your evacuation plan nearby. If not, meet the fishes."

From "The Big One" I remember reading this a few months ago and being mildly interested. Now of course I'm a whole lot less blase.

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Sunday, September 11, 2005

Hip Hop and the Hurricane II 

Click above to help via David Banner's Heal the Hood foundation

Mos Def "Katrina Clap" (mp3 via Spine also available at Hashim's)

Papoose "Mother Nature" - whatever I might think of his lyrical skills, I'll say this about Papoose, he's one of the best conceptualists in the game right now as far his songwriting goes based on stuff I've heard from him recently. (mp3 plays in real player via

K-Otix: "George Bush Doesn't Care About Black People" (click through to Soul-Sides for the mp3)

Mississippi native David Banner on hurricane Katrina. BTW, his performance of "Cadillac on 22's" on BET's telethon last Friday was pretty incredible. (related: Banner's Heal the Hood hurricane relief charity)

TI & Fat Joe raise over $250,000 for Katrina Victims.

"Hell NO, we Aint Allright" - Chuck D's Hurricane Katrina poem. (Click here to hear him performing it live on his Air America radio show; mp3 link via Spine yet again)

The real "Black CNN" - Davey D collects testimonials of NOLA residents and news clips and sets them to music. (mp3 link via Spine)

KRS-One weighs in on the Hurricane Katrina Situation.

Jeff Chang says "Support NOLA Community Organizers And Musicians"

More links via Jay (some of the above links are repeated)

And even more via Catchdubs. (ditto on the possible link repeatage)

And finally, not strictly hip hop but beat diggers and real heads know the deal - soothe your soul with some mp3's by NOLA artists courtesy Can I Bring My Gat?

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Taking Over for Dwele 

From my good friends at Room Service:

"Due to a scheduling conflict, Dwele will be unable to perform at the 4th Annual Room Service CMJ showcase but we are pleased to announce the addition of Stephanie McKay to the lineup.

Hailing from the Bronx, Stephanie has played with the likes of Kelis, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, and Portishead producer Geoff Barrows, who co-prodcued her debut album. She was recently featured on Roy Hargrove's Grammy nominated RH Factor project and also completed an international tour with Detroit-based keyboardist/composer Amp Fiddler."

Bonus joint:
Check out the McKay single "Take Me Over", one of my favorite records of 2003. On this incredible track, she rocked over a loop from the old ska staple "Double Barrel" by Dave & Ansell Collins presaging the current craze for vintage reggae sounds, from those Alicia Keys bootleg reggae remixes of songs from her last album to I-Wayne's "Can't Satisfy Her" and Jr. Gong's "Jamrock," by at least a year or more.

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Four Years Later.... 

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Remember this guy? The one who ACTUALLY attacked us on 9/11.

S'funny. Between four years passing and the recent hurricane disaster, the memory of the horror of 9/11 seems to have faded into the ether to the point where there aren't even any memorial stories about it on the lead page of Google news (as of now, that is - who knows if that will have changed by time I get up later this morning?). What happened to "Never Forget?" (update: plenty of coverage on Yahoo! and on TV with the memorial reading of the victim's names. I guess Google don't care!)

Four years later do you think the average American citizen feels any safer because of Bush's execution of the so-called "War on Terror?" Have the number of terror attacks gone down since the beginning of this "global struggle against the enemies of freedom" and is this nation's government any better ready to handle a major attack on the homeland than they were four years ago?

Whatever your point of view on the answers to those questions, one thing's for sure: 9/11 attack mastermind Osama Bin Laden is still at large.


- Activists plan 9/11 Katrina protest. If this jumps off, I can't wait to see how it's covered by the media.

- Join the "The World Can't Wait, Drive out the Bush Regime" New Orleans Jazz Funeral Procession in NYC later today. (click here for more details)

Victims of the 9/11 attacks, the subsequent "war on terror" and hurricane Katrina, R.I.P.

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Friday, September 09, 2005

Not Playing Fair 

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Playing by a different set of rules?

Mariah Carey "Shake It Off (remix)" feat. Jay-Z and Young Jeezy - like my man Ron said when he first heard the Hova/Jeezy "Go Crazy" remix, "C'mon, they're just not playing fair." Mariah administers the final death blow in probably the best comeback in the music game this year outside of Bow Wow who defied all odds and is actually relevant again with the little dunnies because of his "Like You" joint feat. Ciara and "Let Me Hold You" feat. Omarion. Shout to my man Sledge who special requested the Bow Wow up in this piece (!). BTW, is Hovi biting Peedi Crakk's vocal style a little in the middle of his verse?

And don't forget to party with them Dork boys TONIGHT. Who knows, maybe they'll play some Bow Wow?!

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"So many of the people were underprivileged anyway so this is working very well for them...." 

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More Katrina (and other news) links coming soon but for the most up-to-date info, I recommend the following sites which are all on fire:

America Blog

Bart Cop

Crooks and Liars


The Huffington Post


Raw Story


TPM Cafe

Think Progress

The Washington Monthly

In the meantime, welcome Slate and Cursor readers and thanks Barbara Bush for the completely ig'nant comment (and more) that graces the headline slot in our post today.

Related reading on Hurricanes Katrina and Rita from The Kitchen:

- Hurricane Katrina: Black America's 9/11? (link)

- Katrina: a few insider views... (link)

- When the Levee Breaks.... (link)

- Hip Hop and the Hurricane (link)

- Hip Hop and the Hurricane II (link)

- "A lot of people are ashamed of what is happening in this country right now...." (link)

- "You don't want to be here at night....." (link)

- "Why is no one in charge?" (link)

- "Lives were lost that did not need to be lost...." (link)

- "I done called for a shelter, I done called for help. There ain't none. No one answers...." (link)

- "To the extent the federal government didn't fully do its job right, I take responsibility...." (link)

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Thursday, September 08, 2005

When the Levee Breaks.... 

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I don’t think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees.

Nobody could have anticipated the breach of the levees” -- President George W. Bush

Government planners did not predict such a disaster ever could occur.” -- Homeland Security Secretary, Michael Chertoff


Because there's plenty of evidence around that proves that the adminstration was fully aware of the catastrophic damage that could result if a hurricane were to strike the New Orleans region.

For example:

"In July 2004, just over one year ago, FEMA held a five-day exercise at the State Emergency Operations Center in Baton Rouge to develop joint response plans for a catastrophic hurricane in Louisiana.

In the staged scenario developed by FEMA, a fictitious “Hurricane Pam” brought 120-mph winds and storms that “topped levees in the New Orleans area.” “More than one million residents evacuated and Hurricane Pam destroyed 500,000-600,000 buildings.”

The New Orleans Times-Picayune covered the FEMA exercise and reported that officials focused on six major issues. One of which was: “Removing floodwater from New Orleans, Metairie and other bowl-like areas where levees will capture and hold storm surge, possibly for days or weeks.”"

In fact, more recently in the immediate run-up to the arrival of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast region FEMA Director Mike Brown and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, listened in on electronic briefings given by the staff of Dr. Max Mayfield, director of the National Hurricane Center in advance of Hurricane Katrina slamming Louisiana and Mississippi and were advised of the storm’s potential deadly effects.

And even before last week's disaster, the threat to New Orleans was more than well known:

"It's only a matter of time before South Louisiana takes a direct hit from a major hurricane. Billions have been spent to protect us, but we grow more vulnerable every day." (Part one of a Five-Part Series originally published June 23-27, 2002 in the New Orleans Times-Picayune.)

While Mark Fischetti wrote an another article for Scientific American that eerily predicted that "a major hurricane could swamp New Orleans under 20 feet of water, killing thousands" four years ago.

Which begs the question of why....

Hurricane protection was a low priority for Bush


Bush slashed hurricane funding For New Orleans

In fact, here's a timeline that outlines how the Bush administration gutted and neutered FEMA and slashed the budgets that could have maintained and stregthened flood control projects for New Orleans.

So bottom line, when the storm hit, they were inexplicably unprepared or were flat incapable of effectively getting help in even though 18 year olds and some resourceful college students seem to be able to manage just fine (or at least much better than FEMA). But is it any surprise when the head of the federal agnecy in charge of disaster management and preparedness is completely unqualified to hold the position and only got the gig because of cronyism (aka reverse affirmative action)?

So now "They out there spinnin''", as Mayor Ray Nagin put it in his infamous outburst of frustration a few days back, with team Bush playing the "Blame Game" and trying to pass the buck and the responsibility to Mayor Nagin, Governor Blanco and other local leaders for not being prepared and not declaring a state of emergency or requesting federal assistance early enough etc. etc. The reality though? Don't believe the hype.

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Monday, September 05, 2005

Hurricane Katrina: Black America's 9/11? 

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The federal government and many in the media have been trying to downplay the racial subtext to the tragedy of the Hurricane Katrina aftermath but to put it bluntly, while I fully acknowledge that there have been victims of all races, creeds and background in this tragedy, the vast majority of those who are suffering have been black and poor.

Not to draw direct comparisons but it's hard not to in terms of the impact this tragedy has had - it has become Black America's 9/11, only with probably a whole lot more victims. With that in mind, seeing the lacklustre response of the government and, to be honest from my point of view, also the blase "lifes goes on" attitude in much of the rest of country is truly sad and speaks volumes about the true state of race relations in this country and what America really feels about us. Remember how quickly things snapped into place after the 9/11 attacks and compare it to the almost-week long response lag time and "Shoot-to-kill" orders issued to deal with people, the vast majority of whom were just trying to stay alive as best they could, this time around. And before you dismiss my thesis as racial paranoia, check out the following:

"It's black people who are dying, so Bush doesn't care." Kanye's not the only one saying it - anti-rap Harlem minister Rev. Calvin Butts speaks his piece too. But where are the other rappers on this issue - is it left to Celine Dion to speak out from the musician community? WTF?!

What Happens to a Race Deferred.

"To Me, It Just Seems Like Black People Are Marked."

While NEGROphile has a whole bunch of other essential links on this topic too.

But this isn't just a race issue. This week's events cut to the heart of Bush's very fitness to lead this country. Themes central to his presidency from the continued lies to the incompetence of his administration that have been repeatedly ignored or only fleetingly covered by a pliant, submissive media have finally come to a head in the wake of the Hurricane Katrina tragedy. But let me break it down for y'all next time around....

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Sunday, September 04, 2005

Katrina: a few insider views... 

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Insider reports from New Orleans on blogs of many still stranded, starving and in need of rescue.

The Survival of New Orleans blog.

The Times-Picayune Blog/Forum Reveals the True Horror of Katrina Disaster. (via E&P)

Linked before - another Insider's Report from New Orleans.

Thank God it's over now, but here's a first-hand account of life inside the Superdome (not the Astrdome as stated in the Boing Boing link).

Survivors reveal Superdome horror.

Trapped in Marrero, LA under martial law being adminstered by FEMA? (phone call mp3 via Democratic Underground)

And even though its dominated the headlines, this catastrophe has effected more than just New Orleans: "My friend was shot and killed for his car. These murders are not being reported to avoid panic" - an eyewitness account post-Hurricane from Hattiesburg, Mississippi.

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Hip Hop and the Hurricane 

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Hip-Hop Reacts and Responds to the Hurricane Katrina disaster.

O-Dub's presents "A Thought on New Orleans and America" - so on-point it hurts.

SOHH's new Hurricane Katrina Crisis blog - "trying to make sense of this crisis from a hip hop p.o.v."

"Why is it that Fidel Castro, dictator of Cuba, has offered to help but it seems President Bush is staggering a few steps behind....?" - a HiphopDx op-ed on the Hurricane Katrina crisis.

Master P's Team Rescue relief charity.

Hip Hop journalist Kevin Powell and special guests present a BENEFIT for New Orleans.

New readers, in case you're wondering, I already mentioned Kanyeezy's Bush bashing on the site previously.

But I leave you with Mannie Fresh feat. Tateeze "Conversation" - because the spirit of fun NOLA (and 'Nolia) embodied will never be drowned in a hurricane. This song, by one of NO's finest, reminded me of that spirit and made me feel better when I saw the video playing at the Herald Sq. Footlocker this afternoon. (via Universal/Motown)

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A Quick Break... 

From the Katrina coverage (but trust me, plenty more is coming):

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Dunderdon opening party TONIGHT, click the image above or here to expand the invite. (via Patrick)

Cam'ron feat. Juelz Santana, Jim Jones, Hell Rell, 40.Cal & Un Kasa "Dipset Symphony" - proof that Dipset can still get down on some real hip hop ish. (mp3 via the Six Shot forums)

Vaugely related: State Property 2 - I just watched this last night and it's better than you'd expect. I actually liked the first one as well and this is more of the same if not actually maybe better. Yeah, it's basically a 90 minute commercial for all of Dame Dash's business ventures but it's also a strangely compelling urban gangsta B-movie whose plot actually has some meat to it. It's no Goodfellas or Scarface but it ain't wack either.

Souled On

Vinyl Addicts

Those Two Words

Free Rap

Up for next time: Hip Hop-related hurricane disaster news and links. In the meantime, I'll see y'all at Jamrock North (aka known as Eastern Parkway) tomorrow.

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"These people are dying for no other reason than the lack of organization...." 

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The more I read, see and hear, the more sick to my stomach and upset I get. The situation in NOLA (and elsewhere) is "criminal."

Despite the rescue and evacuation efforts finally getting underway in a significant way, the extent of how incomeptently and shamefully this catastrophe has been mishandled is slowly emerging:

"The only difference between the chaos of New Orleans and a Third World disaster operation is that a foreign dictator would have responded better." (read more here)

Major combat operations have just begun? The US government is now describing it's own citizens, those who couldn't afford to leave NOLA, as an insurgency? WTF?! Is there no end to the shame? (via Boing Boing)

FEMA: Mission (Not) Accomplished. And depsite the Right-leaning media and the federal government trying to spin the mess down in NOLA and the Gulf region as the fault of Mayor Ray Nagin and Gov. Kathleen Blanco rather than the Bush adminstration's own incompetence, the Federal disaster management agency even admits on its own website that they would assume primary responsibility for handling any "natural disaster or large-scale emergency" as clear as day. (via AMERICAblog)

And it's especially hard for the Bush admin. to feign ignorance about the possibility of a disaster like this occuring in light of this.

Sh-it is so bad now that even Sen. Mary Landrieu, who was put on blast on CNN by Anderson Cooper a couple days ago for glibly thanking Bush for his assistance despite the lack of it, has now changed her tune in light of Bush's compete lack of leadership in this tragedy including substituting fake photo opps for real action.

And even Republicans are attacking the President for his weak response to this tragedy too.

I pray the federal government really will hold the Bush admin. accountable for this disaster.

And FINALLY the media wakes up out of the stupor they've been in for the last four to five years and starts to call the Bush admin. on their BS. Even Fox Cable News reporters couldn't deny the insanity going on down there.

But the scariest thing of all is that Hurricane Katrina might not be the last of the severe weather devastation this region may have suffer through.

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Saturday, September 03, 2005

"Why is no one in charge?" 

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This thing is blowing my mind. I really can't even get my head around the magnitude of what's really happening down there and why it wasn't managed better out the gate:

"We are out here living like pure animals...."

"Relief workers confront 'urban warfare' - Violence disrupts evacuation, rescue efforts in New Orleans." (read more here)

"US troops have been ordered to shoot to kill to stop the anarchy that has overtaken hurricane-devastated New Orleans." (read more here)

Experts say models predicted the New Orleans disaster.

And that the Federal government wasn't ready for Katrina and "Diverted Millions In Hurricane, Flood Funds To Homeland Security And The War On Terror…"

Storm disaster fuels doubts over US terror plans - let's be real, f'real: God forbid but, if there ever was a terrorist WMD attack on US soil, it'd be a wrap, end of discussion. Anyone who seriously still believes that Bush and the DHS are ready to hold us down through something catastrophic and unexpected like that after witnessing this debacle is a true fccktard (and I'm guessing probably a registered Republican).

Paul Krugman breaks down the real on Bush's Can't-Do Government.

While even Pat Buchanan now says Republicans should impeach Bush for a "conscious refusal to uphold his oath and defend the states of the Union."

Sounds about right to me....

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"George Bush doesn't care about black people...." 

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He might not have said it in the most artful way possible but it was real talk in every sense of that term as Kanye West went off message from the earnest but banal teleprompter script to display some real feelings and emotions. Kanyeezy is The Truth.

A sampling of how the MSM media and blog world have covered the race issue in the Hurricane Katrina story:

"The obvious yet mostly unspoken fact of the Katrina disaster is that all but the poorest blacks escaped New Orleans before the storm." (read full article here at Sploid).

Katrina -- Not an Equal Opportunity Destroyer. (Huffington Post)

"The difference between those who lived and those who died in this great storm and flood of 2005 was nothing more than poverty, age, or skin color." (read more at the Huffington Post)

"Let's just call this for what it is: much of the frenzy over looters is a red herring to deflect attention away from more important issues (like saving dying people and alleviating the suffering of tens of thousands of others)...." (read the rest over at O-Deezy's)

"Don't say that a hurricane destroyed New Orleans. Hurricanes don't drown cities.

It was a "perfect storm" of a different kind that put that great city underwater: Bush-era neglect of our national infrastructure, combined with runaway global warming and a deep contempt for poor African-Americans."

From "Bush's Role in the Drowning of New Orleans."

Conservative magazine The American Spectator blames blacks and political correctness for the chaos.

Stone probably sums it up the best though when he argues that It Sucks to be Poor and Black in America.

That's why we black folk need some real soul music right about now: Little Brother "The Pilot" (aka The Minstrel Show album sampler). (Windows: Hi | Lo | Real | ecard)

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"You don't want to be here at night....." 

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Vacation is Over... an open letter from Michael Moore to George W. Bush (via Joe)

New Orleans: An Insider's Report -- it is truly frightening how bad the situation has become and how horrendously the aftermath of this disaster has been mismanaged.

NOLA's Mayor Ray Nagin going off -- this is ESSENTIAL listening and possibly the realest talk I've ever heard from a politician. (via

The Dept. of Homeland Security -- COMPLETELY FCCKIN' OUT OF TOUCH.

Via Sploid: "The richest, most powerful nation in the world can build schools, hospitals and shelters halfway around the globe, but it can’t provide the basic necessities for its own days after a disaster that everybody saw coming? [emphasis added]" (read more at )

Could the people in charge of managing the catastrophe in New Orleans possibly be more clueless?

"[I]t must be tough to be the president when everything you do is wrong....." (read more at

After possibly the greatest natural disaster in US history, what's the GOP's response? Making sure the senate vote on repealing the estate tax is not delayed this upcoming week. Is NOW really the time for MORE tax cuts - WTF?!!

And more right wing insanity from their religious extremist division.

While Condi shops and vacations as Nawleans drowns, burns and starves.

Yo, Bill O'Reilly should be bitch slapped.

And heads-up, 'New Orleans Disaster: The Sequel' is coming Oct. 17

"It hasn't been widely discussed yet, but another disaster will strike the victims of Hurricane Katrina on October 17, 2005. And Bush can't say that he didn't anticipate it. He orchestrated it.

The president's beloved Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act goes into effect on that day.

Interesting that while the bill was passing though the House Judiciary Committee early this year, Democrats attempted to amend the bill to include measures to protect victims of natural disasters such as hurricanes.

The amendment to the bill, proposed by Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) was voted down without debate. Along party lines...."

Peep Wesley Clark's take on the Bush admin's inept handling of the Hurricane Katrina disaster: it all comes down to leadership.

And the cronyism and profiteering begins....

So finally, let me leave you with some music to leaven out all the news and commentary links. George Bush and the GOP, this one goes out to y'all:

G-Unit, Mase, Mobb Deep & M.O.P. "300 Shots" (via

(Mase, where's your bible??)

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Thursday, September 01, 2005

"A lot of people are ashamed of what is happening in this country right now...." 

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There truly are no words for what is happening right now but Anderson Cooper comes very close:

I just got word on a college buddy living in Mississippi who managed to finally reach a mutual friend to let him know that he and his family were OK but also to say, in describing the situation down there, that "New Orleans is much worse than the media is letting on...."

At first the prospect of Hurricane Katrina touching down in the Gulf Coast area was worrying but some humor didn't seem out of line.

And then it hit and things got bad, then worse:

- New Orleans in Anarchy With Fights, Rapes

- Superdome descends from refuge of last resort into chaos and anarchy. (related: LA Times' take)

And the reasons were several, most of them federal.

While the two photos already seen around the internets only underscored how far things still have to go when a tragedy like this occurs and highlight the differences and problems this country has rather than uniting it.

Sadly, it seems our government, even in desperate times like these, is unwilling to ask the nation to make the sacrifices needed to pull through this or to even acknowledge how serious a problem there is.

But on a lighter note, because we still (or especially) need laughter and art in these trying times:

Eric Benet Hurricane - Yikes... the title of his recently released album and the first single from it are a stunning display of the continued bad luck for Benet, aka "the dumbest man on the planet", a title he earned after divorcing Halle Berry.

Led Zeppelin "When The Levee Breaks" (mp3 via Drummer World)

Despite my glibness, believe that my prayers go out to all those suffering in New Orelans and on the Gulf Coast.

Do the right thing: DONATE, as much as you can.

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