The Sounds of Sleep (The First Post)

Can’t sleep? These videos will help you get there in a hurry.

Alpha Waves, Hypnosis, New Age, Rain, whatever you need to get you there. There’s thousands, of course, but I can only give you a sample of the variety that’s out there. Of course, if you have your own examples, please post them in the comment thread-the more the merrier.

(Delta Waves 8 hours)

(Sleep and Hypnosis)

Rain and Sleep

New Age Music and Sleep

Also tell me how well they work for you. One thing to keep in mind, if they work for you, you will get pretty relaxed and drowsy. So like my hypnosis tapes (the hypnosis side) warn, never listen when you are driving or when you must maintain a great deal of awareness.


A Retreat and Relaxation Place

Over the months I’ve begun to think that what is needed is a site on the internet that is partly a place for healing, partly a place for serentiy, party a place for fun. The Lounge is just that. The other two blogs are for more serious stuff like politics and astrology and stuff. It’s a place for bunnies, rainbows and sleep therapy, a place for hypnosis, for delta waves, for beautiful scenery to walk on. Some examples of this:


A Hidden Gem of YouTube

One day, looking for sleep music, I ran across a 3 hour jazz compilation. And discovered one of YouTube’s best kept secrets: The multihour compilations of good music. Sometimes they are greatest hits collections, sometimes they are specially created for relaxation, concentration, whatever. So here’s a few I have liked:


The Sneakernet


There’s more to this blog than the Obama Legacy. For one thing, the activities probably won’t start up for another year. So I’m also going to do Sneakernet-under the net. What’s Sneakernet? It’s a little bit more than just the computer- a little bit less than completely connected at all times to the cloud-it’s external hard drives, it’s flash drives, its brute force computing where people use slightly older tech to communicate. It’s poor people’s computing, in other words.
This section is inspired by a lot of things: Cuba’s way of getting what they need by hand to hand passing around of hard drives full of movies, tv shows, and whatever else they can enjoy. By those guys on the card tables in front of the store, and by those intrepid pirates that keep copying and downloading stuff so that others can enjoy it even if they don’t live anywhere near where they can buy.

And speaking about copyright: I would do this. Set a date reasonably enough into the future. All materials over 55 years old would go into the public domain unless you specifically pay for the renewal. If no one comes forward with a claim, it goes into the public domain. We’ve done it backwards-life plus 75 years. With that as a standard, some parts of Mozart wouldn’t have made it into the public domain until the 1930’s if Mozart had lived to be 100! The result is also orphan works, where nobody can find the author or even the publisher, so there’s concern about possible copyright violations because the author(s) could still be living at ancient ages somehwere-or their kids could make a claim. This has been done to keep Mickey Mouse from going into the public domain. But in this system, Disney could simply pay for its renewals, and leave everyone else alone. Pay, you renew. Don’t pay, it goes into the public domain.

To begin: those external hard drives that get dissed in favor of the cloud. While the cloud has its benefits, the fact is that I don’t need the internet to retrieve my data. And considering I’ve had a few days where I haven’t had access, the fact that I can still play my music and read downloaded books is definitely a plus. All I need is electricity and time. No worries about whether a distant server has been compromised or not, the cloud is where I am. No lost passwords to worry about. Once I’ve paid for the drive, the storage is free forever. And yes, you can retrieve data from a crashed hard drive.


The SOTU: State of the Future

(Full State of the Union Video)

(Community College)

(I won both of them”)
While many people have conceded that Obama probably will not get much of his agenda voted into law, one thing people haven’t taken in

account is this: how much of this will be enacted into law at the state level? We’ve already had votes for legal pot, minimum wage

and All passed on a local level. So his agenda is popular elsewhere in

the nation-it wins elections. But we heard nothing from Democrats running on the national level about these issues. Instead they ran

away from Obama-and ignored these popular policies thinking it would prevent them losing among moderates. That strategy never works. Why? Simply

this: everyone knows that even if you are a maverick, to price of getting your maverick things done is to get along with your party

on other things as well. And to vote for your party leader is a must if you want favors as well. So Obama is faced with a struggle to revive the Democratic Party and set an agenda that Democrats will vote for. And the 22nd Amendment gives him that luxury.

And about the situation the Republicans find themselves in-an unleashed Obama-they can blame themselves: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-second_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution. It was the Republican Party that wanted to limit Presidential terms. And it has come back to bit them in so many ways. They could have re-elected Eisenhower and (maybe) Shrub, and propped up Reagan for one more term. Think of the Supreme Court if either Reagan or Shrub had four more years. Daddy Bush could have tried again if he could somehow get an additional 4 years beyond the 4 a new election would have given him. They might have gotten Clinton to resign if Clinton could come back later instead of it being his second and last term. Plus, limited terms means that a President who has no need to face the voters again can act independently of public opinion. I wonder if Dewey, in his anger at FDR for running-and winning 4 times realized that. It didn’t seem apparent for a long time. Eisenhower saw himself as more of a caretaker. Kennedy and LBJ, Ford and Carter and G H Bush never had a second term. Nixon had one, but it was a failure. During a long stretch, only Reagan went the full eight. But he was aging and almost senile, so he was pretty accommodating. Only Clinton was able to take advantage of the freedom of not having to face the voters, but he was restrained by his need to launch Hillary And Clinton too, was presiding over a hot economy and was vastly more popular than the men who tried to impeach him.

Obama is in a different position. He doesn’t have to worry about launching Michelle’s political career, his economy is starting the process towards overheating-we hope. There are no scandals. He’s healthy as a horse. So Obama can truly take advantage of this moment.

No impeachment this time-we hope. But if there is one, it would probably be over foreign policy. There’s really nothing else. He’s clearly free from personal scandal. In the world of cellphone cameras and amateur sleuths, it wouldn’t take a  stained dress and Linda Tripp to uncover an affair. Just a scan of Facebook pages would probably be enough-there probably would be pictures making something like that clear. Obama has never been obsessed with money, so no financial scandals either. Besides, these days, an ex-President who leaves on good terms can make far more money than it would be worth to steal. Secure in himself, Obama isn’t obsessed with enemies, no Nixon redux. What’s left? Policy. But nobody would even impeach over bad domestic policy. These people would be happy if it was bad for no other reason that it would make another Black President less likely.

So it would be foreign policy. But all the spinning and gyrating about #Benghazi has made it clear there’s nothing there. So what is left?:#Cuba and #Iran.  Why?  One thing is clear: Obama is angering the Neocons-and they have a lot of influence over Congress-and presumably a lot of chips. They are angry because Obama is ending a lot of fantasies. The hope was that by war, they could make the Middle East, older and more complex than most of the world in their own image. That’s what Bremer tried to do, and created a big mess. But one thing about remaking the world ideas by force, it’s easy to delude oneself that a few more divisions and a few more months would finally have made those pesky Iraqis into true believers. Obama has withdrawn the troops and acknowledged reality. The birth of neocon policy was that co-existence wasn’t going to be enough-that the United States could remake those enemies by military force-especially the Soviet Union. But the Soviet Union dissolved back into Russia pretty peacefully. So there was never that triumphal march through Moscow, waving the banner of free trade and democracy. While there wasn’t going to be a restoration of the Tsar, perhaps the politics more suited to the Koch brothers would do.  It didn’t happen.

Cuba and Iran was fallbacks.  They were to be alternative villains, to be the substitutes for that triumphal march. They were the holdouts against the New American Century, the smaller nations that refused their hegemony and their ideas. Cuba, by being stubbornly socialist, Iran by refusing to sing in the “Israel can do no wrong” choir.  Troops would restore the Shah, and the exiles would return to those long-abandoned mansions.

Cuba will become another neighbor that’s peaceful-without regime change. Iran will become peaceful-without regime change. No marching armies torestore the pre-revolutionary status quo. Obama is ending those regime change fantasies-and the millions of defense contractor bucks that comes from spending to try to make the world in their image and being hired as consultants.

So expect to see howling over every hiccup, fawning over every dissident no matter how unsavory, and attempts to get Obama into an unwanted war. And every stumble would be seen as possible fodder for impeachment for “endangering the American people”.

State of the Future-indeed.


A Little Poll

A little poll about the Obama Library is today’s post. What are your ideas about it, and where do you think it should be?

Hawaii is warm, beautiful, and the location would be on the beach somewhere. But it’s inaccessible to the average citizen, being Hawaii.  And land is at a premium there, which makes expansion complicated.

Chicago is cold, but accessible to anyone who can drive there. Land’s cheaper, so it can be larger and grow if needed. Plus such a project would re-invigorate a neighborhood in the same way that Clinton’s did for a riverside spot in Little Rock.

Believe it or not, Columbia University in NYC is also making a bid. This despite the fact that the connection is rather tenous-Obama went there, but otherwise has no longing to return to NYC.



Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

53 Historians on Obama’s Legacy


53 historians on Obama’s Legacy.

One thing the article leaves out that may shape the perception: barring disaster, Obama will have years afterwards to shape his legacy and build on his accomplishments outside the Presidency. In that sense, Obama is unusual. Most Presidents are elected in their mid-50’s (Shrub was 54), and as a result at the end of their term(s), they take on a life of retirement-golfing, giving speeches, and taking it easy. And retirement has been hard for most Presidents in my lifetime. Eisenhower golfed but was very ill, Kennedy never lived to see one, LBJ was ill and despondent. Nixon resigned in bitterness, Reagan was senile, Daddy Bush simply retired. It’s been the Democrats Clinton and Carter who have had even close to a decent retirement. Carter earned a Nobel Prize due to his humanitarian work, Clinton has his Foundation and Hillary.

Obama will be in a better situation. Having served a full eight years, he will have no regrets regarding his accomplishments. He’s leaving on his own terms, popular and still mostly healthy and young.

Parts left out of his legacy: ending the Southern Strategy. He won twice without the South. He’s created a space for needed social progress by his cautious approach to the minimum wage, pot. His appointments that have been incredibly diverse, creating a younger generation of potential national leaders. His support of gay rights and so forth.

What do you think Obama’s legacy will be?




Legacy and Library-The Freakout Begins

http://www.salon.com/2013/04/25/presidential_libraries_are_huge_failures/ (2013)


The next freakout on the schedule:

This month Obama is expected to make his decision on where he is going to put his Presidential Library. I fully expect a freak-out over just about everything about it: it’s cost, it’s location, what’s put in it, and even whether he deserves one.

Let’s not get into the fundraising aspects of it. And wherever it’s located will be criticized.Hawaii’s too brown, Chicago’s too ghetto.

But the real reason I think, for the freakout is that this will be a Presidential Library that not only won’t be a failure, but a resounding success. Who can resist going to the Presidential Library of the first African-American President? And Obama, leaving the Presidency at the age of 55, will be a presence there: inspiring, encouraging, renewing.

It may also be a community resource-a safe place to meet, organize and learn, especially for minorities. It will be well protected, lighted and heated. It will be a place where thinkers and scholars both study and learn about both Obama-and the places where he lived and developed.

Lastly, the freakout is that a Presidential Library means Obama cannot be erased by merely forgetting him. This is a brick and mortar legacy-and eventually, memorial. (Several Presidents have been buried on the grounds of their Presidential Libraries)


Thank You Obama

A post of appreciation and gratitude. I’ll start. I have much to be thankful for. Obama’s home retention policies saved my condo. I got a much-delayed mammogram and was much relieved to find out the lumps were benign. I am a beneficiary of extended medicaid lately-and my ADD meds are affordable now.

When Obama was elected, I remember hearing tales of sheer desperation and panic-of middle level and middle aged people suddenly laid off after years of hard work. I was grateful to be working as a temp on the day he was sworn in-riding the bus home listening to his first inauguration speech.

But also I’m thankful for the past 6 years of competence and relative peace. I’m thankful for the space he’s given us for social progress. Gay marriage is mostly legal, pot is well on the way, there are more women in government than ever.

We are at-mostly-peace. Dudebros may complain about drones, but where were they when thousands were sent to Iraq and Afghanistan, and men were coming home in a body bag? Only advisors are there now, and as long as he’s there, that’s all it will be. Iran is on the verge of signing a historic nuclear agreement. He’s managed to help neighboring nations beat off ISIS without committing U.S troops.

But how has Obama’s policies helped you?


The First Post

This blog is morphing before my eyes. At first I wanted just a place for music, but realized I wanted to do Obama Legacy Stuff. So I will do both, alternately. This can be both a haven for smooth jazz and watching while Obama plans his library and so forth..


The Lounge Calendar

August 2017
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