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NOT ANGRY, 'CONCERNED'
It was nice to meet Commie Girl when she took the time to come to our recent Libertarian Party mixer (Commie Girl, Nov. 19). But I'm not sure it was fair to portray many in attendance as "angry." Certainly, there is a high level of concern within the party, and I guess it would be easy for someone satisfied with the status quo to equate concern with anger. Even if we do define the concern as "anger," why is it that anger as a reaction to what government has become is exclusive to Libertarians? Certainly those who claim membership in the Republican Party should be angry that a Republican-led Congress has allowed corporate welfare, taxes and regulations to proliferate on their watch. And shouldn't those who champion civil rights and claim the Democrats as leaders be angry at Democrats who allow statist repression of individual rights? Instead, they all just shrug, willing to sacrifice freedoms in the name of winning some silly Left-Right issue, which in the big picture just goes to show that the real difference between Republicans and Democrats is the flavor of their statism.
Angry or not, at least Libertarians have the courage to raise their voices against politicians who claim the title of Master. If you can't make it to one of our mixers, drop by sometime at www.lpoc.org.Rick Root Westminster
NOT ANGRY, 'NEGATIVE'
I was very surprised to find artists such as Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello make Buddy Seigal's list of angriest songs ("The All-Time Top 20 Pissed List," Nov. 19). Sure, the chosen songs offer negative connotations and may be angry in context, but there is music far angrier than this. Pick nearly anything by Skinny Puppy, Front 242, NIN or Ministry. I think you could find your Top 20 from these bands alone. I must say I was impressed with your selection of Black 47 and "It's Time to Go"—the lyrics are a powerful opinion of British rule in Northern Ireland!
Whenever someone releases a Top 20 list, there will be those like myself to debate it. I appreciate the effort, but I feel that artists like Holiday, Charles, Dylan and Costello belong on a different Top 20 list—maybe all-time artist? But that's another list, and one that could be disputed! "A" for effort!Joe Woodrow Balboa
NOT AS ANGRY NOW THAT HE'S A CHRISTIAN
I know that every time a publication publishes a list of Best Anything, readers have their own submissions they feel were unduly left out. This one, however, can be nowhere but the top of the angriest-song list. In the late '70s, when KROQ had a guy in the mornings who arranged listeners to call in and scream as loudly as they could, they began to play an angry diatribe of a song by Tonio K., "Hatred." The song began acoustically with softly sung, seemingly sad, broken-hearted lyrics. Then it snuck up on listeners. With the words, "But let me put this another way, okay?" Tonio K. unleashed the most amazing attack on a former girlfriend in song ever.
He later became a Christian and is no longer heard from musically. But when you hear the song, it's clear the world is safer with Tonio K. a man of faith.Dirk Yarborough Santa Ana
NOT ANGRY, JUST YEARNING FOR THE DAYS WHEN THE COPS USED TO HUNT US DOWN AND BEAT US
I agree with Jack Grisham when he says, "Today's punks seem to be playing a part." Today's music is watered-down and overpolished—just like today's punks. Back in the day, if you walked down the street with a mohawk or an earring, you had a very good chance of being beaten up by the cops. Now it's so trendy you see it on the cover of fashion magazines.
Finally, how could you leave the Black Flag song "Revenge" out of "The All-Time Pissed List"? You blew it.Paul Morales Aliso Viejo
NOT ANGRY, JUST DEPRESSED BECAUSE HE EATS TOO MUCH SUGAR
I bought Sugar Ray's 14:59 because I liked a lot of the songs on it. I knew nothing about the band. I was pleasantly surprised, subsequently, to learn they were from Newport Beach—local boys making good. I then saw and very much liked their "Falls Apart" video. To top it off, I bought a Sugar Ray T-shirt off their Web site! Only after all this did I learn that if I were right-thinking (according to your rag and many others), they are a band I should utterly disdain.
I'm still not quite sure why. So I'm on the horns of a dilemma: whether to jump on the critical bandwagon, burn my T-shirt and stop listening to their music; or keep listening to their music and wear my T-shirt, while running the risk of unwittingly running across a group of Weekly staff members, who, upon seeing my T-shirt, will beat the crap out of me. Or try to, anyway.Craig Furnas Corona del Mar
NOT ANGRY, IN CHANTING
Well, bro, I just read Rick Kane's article on Rage Against the Machine and thought it was very well-done. I was particularly happy to see so much information about Zack de la Rocha's band that might have been Rage, Inside Out. But I gotta say I was a little hurt about the way you described the guitarist situation for that band. You interviewed Mike Rosas and said he was "one of several [guitarists] the band employed during its brief life." Rosas himself said, "Inside Out was really Zack's band." Shit, I was the guitarist for Inside Out, dude. I was a schmuck and left Zack and the band totally cold to run off and spend 10 years as a Hare Krishna monk. After that, Zack tried hard to keep the band—which was his life and soul—together with a string of guitarists that included Rosas. But you dis and miss the whole beauty of Inside Out by saying, "Inside Out was really Zack's band" and insinuating that a disposable string of members was utilized by a front-man-dominated band. That's not what Inside Out was at all. Inside Out was a total collaboration, almost like a union of the souls of the members—and that's what made the band shine. I was responsible for roughly half the lyrics and music on our only recorded release, No Spiritual Surrender. And every song we did had the spiritual fingerprint of each member of the band.
Don't dismiss that, bro. That's what makes a few unique bands work like an A-bomb compared to mere dynamite. And that, to me, is why Inside Out was and always will be such a beautiful and cherished part of my life.Vic DiCara via e-mail Rich Kane responds: Do Hare Krishnas really use words like "bro" and "dude"? Man, the churchhas changed.
NOT ANGRY, JUST MISSING HIS IDOL, KURT COBAIN
I am writing to ask you guys about a picture I saw in your Nov. 12 issue on Page 25. Is that Kurt Cobain? I am a really big fan of Nirvana, and Kurt is my idol, and I was so excited when I saw what I think is a picture of him. Is it him, or am seeing a double? If it's him, when was that picture taken? I'm anxious to know if it's him. Please respond to me as soon as possible.Francisco Garcia Santa Ana Kurt Cobain replies: I didn't really die. No one does. You just disappear for a while. Take Elvis, who, in this life, has to appear in trailer parks in Arizona being his big, old, fat self. I've chosen to make my return as Scott Presant, publisher of the free magazineSkratch. It's easier this way. Now when people say, "Hey, didn't you used to be someone famous?" I can say, "I still am. I'm Scott Presant."
ANGRY AND SELF-RIGHTEOUS
Thanks to Matt Coker, a mystery is solved ("Poo Fighters," Nov. 26). Former deputy district attorney Chris Evans, now the Surfrider Foundation's CEO, admits his ignorance of CoastKeeper. Where have you been this past year, Chris? Maybe arranging and rearranging those pencils on your desk? What's really funny, though, is Evans' statement that "We've been waiting a long time for others to come and help." If it weren't for Clean Aliso Creek Association's aggressive reaching out to Surfrider's Laguna chapter, the South Laguna Civic Association and CoastKeeper, you'd still be sitting there, micrometer in hand, rearranging your pen-and-pencil set, waiting for Godot or whomever.
Wake up and smell the coffee, Chris. Did you sit around and wait for help on your cases when you were in the DA's office? I spoke to you for a half-hour a few weeks ago, trying to prod and guilt-trip you into attending the "workshop" on ocean pollution that my coalition, the Clean Water Now Coalition, succeeded in procuring on Nov. 9 in Laguna Beach. No one from Surfrider's headquarters showed up, and so you still sit there, a hodad environmentalist, waiting for the phone to ring and some reporter to please, please ask your opinion.
Chris, your only success this year was to make Surfrider passé. We'll pick it up from here, knowing that we are in the vanguard. . . . Catch us if you can!Roger von Butow founder, Clean Aliso Creek Association Laguna Beach
Your article regarding the proposed Wal-Mart to be built in Huntington Beach only told one story and misrepresented some key facts ("Discount Democracy," Nov. 5). If you watch Huntington Beach politics at all, you are probably aware that the Huntington Beach Union High School District just lost its bid for a bond issue that would have been used for desperately needed repairs to their schools. In that climate, we looked for a non-tax method of obtaining funds for maintenance and upgrades to our open sites. Sites that have been deemed surplus—such as Crest View School—are the answer. By leasing Crest View to Wal-Mart, we get an ongoing source of revenue, and we get the property back at the end of the term. The Wal-Mart development at Crest View will generate almost $41 million in lease revenue as opposed to $7.5 million for an outright sale. This revenue will help us qualify for $27 million in matching modernization funds from the state.
Finally, in your article, you say that there were other offers that generated higher yields to the district. There were two considerations when the decision was made to accept Arnel Development's offer to build a Wal-Mart on the site; a consultant advised us on the viability of the other offers and our commitment to the city of Huntington Beach. The current configuration will offer the best sales-tax return to the city, which in turn benefits all the residents. If the property is developed with houses, the city gets only the property-tax revenues with additional homes to provide services to.
I hope that the voters take time to become informed on the issues and not rely on one-sided articles such as yours.Pam Walker president, Ocean View School Board Huntington Beach Juan Rockefeller, finance analyst in theOC Weekly DataLab, responds: Ms. Walker, we'll make you a deal: we'll take the $7.5 million you say you'd get from an outright sale of the Crest View School site and invest it with the modest expectation that we'll average 10 percent per year. At the end of 65 years, we'll give you half of the principal and interest income, leaving you with almost $1 billion—compared to your paltry $68 million—to divide among the residents of Huntington Beach. Now who do you think they'd rather have in charge of the district's finances?