Friday, April 25, 2008

Tapes 'n Tapes, Boris Yeltsin

On April 8, new records dropped from Tapes 'n Tapes ("Walk it Off") and Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin ("Pershing"). I tried to scoop them both on that day, but the SSLYBY album was sold out (so I had to wait a couple days). Anyhow, they are both really good records.
I had the chance to see the bands on consecutive nights this week in DC. Tapes 'n Tapes was at the 9:30 Club on Wednesday night and SSLYBY (pictured above) was at the Black Cat last night.
Tapes 'n Tapes failed to play "Lines," which I think is among the best tracks on the new record, but they did play some great tunes from their previous album "The Loon," including maybe their best song "Omaha."
In terms of SSLYBL, I was really struck with how young, talented, and enthusiastic they were. They played all of my favorite tunes from the new record as well as the previous one, "Broom." Massive respect.
Really good shows...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Ethics Crisis + "No Comment" = Guilty

The Washington Post ran an article today about Air Force Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Goldfein, now vice director of the joint staff, and how--in Nov. 2005--he allegedly interfered in a multi-million dollar Air Force contract by inappropriately exercising his influence over subordinates. The contract was awarded to a relatively new company started by a recently retired four-star general and civilian pilot who had grown close to Air Force officials. A two-year probe determined that Goldfein had worked (and even gone to some pretty great lengths) to favor the company, whose offer was more than twice as expensive as another bid.

The Washington Post obtained a Defense Department Inspector General report that "offers a searing, blow-by-blow account of how a relatively mundane Air Force contract spun out of control, highlighting serious conflicts of interest in the selection process, officers stacking the deck in favor of friends, and others influencing a system designed to eliminate such favoritism in spending taxpayer dollars. "

Goldfein's response?


He declined to comment.

Nice call, Major. Why didn't you just repeat what you said in the report? That wasn't too bad. Even if you are guilty, can you at least say something ambiguous like, "This is a very unfortunate situation that is casting an undue cloud of doubt over an esteemed branch of the armed services?"

Come on!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Not Your Father's Surrogate

An article in today's Washington Post discusses how Chelsea Clinton is really coming into her own as a spokesperson for her mother. For the past few months, she's been ramping up her (mostly) college campus visits and effectively delivering her mother's message to her peers. It was even noted that she recently brought up the Lewinsky--a topic that really shook her up a couple months ago when it was raised in a question directed at her.

For Hillary to have any success, Chelsea is going to have to continue to shine as a surrogate. A demographic that Hillary needs to reach--Facebook-using college students and young professionals--is the demographic that Chelsea best identifies with--a group that seems to lean toward Obama.

It will be interesting to see if her role continues to evolve.