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Monday, March 31, 2008 
mayor's plan for homeless: out of sight, out of mind
this is all you really need to know about the mayor's new plan to combat homelessness:

"The immediate goal is to get them out of Downtown so that citizens and visitors don't have to look at it," Ballard said last week.

remember, this is the guy who spent his mayoral campaign scaring people about how big bad property taxes would make them lose their homes. now we know how he feels about people who don't have homes: they need to get the hell out of his city, because he doesn't want to look at them.

aw, heck, here's a bonus quote:

"They're not all homeless," Ballard said. "Panhandlers are a sham. I think most people know that."

you see, not all panhandlers are actually homeless, therefore panhandling itself is a total sham! similarly, i ate a bad apple the other day,* which proves that all apples suck! i'll never eat an apple again!

* not really; virago is the apple eater. i'm more into oranges.

Sunday, March 30, 2008 
shorter matt tully
someone at the indy star has done me a huge favor by pre-shortening today's tully column, so all i have to do is post a screenshot!

shorter matt tully:

i mean, really, what more needs to be said?

update: after who knows how many hours, the page is fixed—well, sort of; the headline is still fubar—and i think i preferred the old, busted version. the column includes a "dozen points of hope"; here's #3:

3. The mayor's Chinatown plan will become reality. Ballard bashers have made fun of this idea, but at least he's thinking.

we make fun of the idea because it's astonishingly naive, the kind of thing you'd expect from an eight-year-old. in fact, we mock the idea because it proves that ballard isn't thinking, because if you actually ponder the idea for 30 seconds, you'll realize it's stupid.

Saturday, March 29, 2008 
thanks, guv!
the indiana sales tax goes up to 7% on tuesday, giving us one of the highest sales taxes in the country. the increase is to make up for lost property tax revenue, which means if you're an apartment-dweller or renter like me, you're screwed—your sales taxes are going up 16%, and there's no way in hell your landlord is going to reduce your rent to accomodate for any property tax decrease. the net result: big tax increase for non-homeowners! and i'm pretty sure that, despite what the governor may think, most "lower-income people" are renters, not homeowners.

but hold on! i used to own a house in washington township, which i miraculously managed to sell last fall. surely, if i still owned that, i would've seen a property tax decrease, yeah? let's take a gander at that new tax assessment that the governor ordered. what do you know: % increase from the rejected 2007 assessment: 13.15%. % increase from last "valid" assessed value: 112.05%

according to the star:

If your assessment declined or increased by less than 8 percent from the assessment used to calculate the flawed 2007 bill, you likely will owe less than your original 2007 bill. If your assessment increased by more than 8 percent, you are likely to owe even more than the amount of the flawed bill.

damned if you do, damned if you don't. my taxes were going to go up either way, thanks to the governor's tax plan.

now, as a liberal, i don't mind paying taxes. i didn't mind when mayor peterson raised the county income tax, because i knew the budget was tight and the money was necessary for public safety. but this is a different scenario: this was supposed to be tax reform! so why am i getting shafted?

Friday, March 28, 2008 
amazon comes to... somewhere in indiana
so the indy star has a new web design. it's an improvement. one of the new features is that user comments now show up at the bottom of the story rather than a separate page. considering the caliber of the star's commenter base, this isn't always a good thing. but it means that when the star makes a horrible factual error, you don't have to wait for a correction—just scroll down! to wit:

Efforts to further Central Indiana’s position as a major distribution hub advanced today as confirmed that it will establish a 1,200-employee distribution center in Boone County.

Amazon, a Seattle-based consumer goods distributor, would employ 1,200 full-time workers at Whitestown by 2010 and another 1,700 part-time workers each holiday shopping season between October and January, state economic development officials said.

hey, that's cool. jobs for hoosiers, plus when you order from amazon your shiz will arrive super early! where's the distro center?

Amazon picked the Boone County site, located on I-69 in farmland about 25 miles north of Indianapolis, over locations in other undisclosed communities and states.

The depot would open in AllPoints Building 1, a vacant 630,500-square-foot building put up last summer by Duke and Browning Development in anticipation of attracting a tenant to AllPoints, a proposed 616-acre industrial park next to Duke's sprawling Anson residential and commercial project west of Zionsville on Ind. 334.

wait, it's where? scroll down to the third comment, from bryan78:

Jesus Ted since when did I-69 go through Boone County? IndyStar needs to better check their stories so they don't sound like idiots.

here's a visual aid. A is zionsville; B is i-69:

whitestown, the town mentioned as the actual site, is off the map, top left.

it's like they're crowdsourcing their basic fact checking and copy editing now.

update: shucks. they've corrected it. the error was only up for about an hour, which i suppose isn't so bad considering their recent track record.

Thursday, March 27, 2008 
choosing sides
the jim schellinger for governor campaign demonstrates its web-savvy by hiring jen wagner of TDW fame. that's a big risk for jen, the mother of a new baby, as she'll be out of a job in six weeks if schellinger doesn't win the primary. here's wishing her good luck in her new endeavor.

what should a political blogger do to avoid potential conflict after signing up with a campaign? jen's answer is to give up her blogs: tdw and accidental mayor will continue on with other bloggers at the helm. here's hoping they don't die of neglect like indiana blog review after it was taken over by a certain radio host.

in comparison, joh padgett apparently deleted his whole website after joining up with myers for congress. then again, when your domain name is your birth name, you can't get away with guest bloggers so easily.

at bilerico, they just ran a disclaimer, which has already scrolled off the main page.

rest assured that stAllio!'s way is not signing up with any campaigns this year. i just won't have time, as i'm working on two really exciting projects, neither of which i'm quite ready to announce on the blog yet. stay tuned for a couple big announcements in the coming weeks.

Monday, March 24, 2008 
the nice price
when i first heard that the deputy mayor's son had been arrested for attempting to solicit an undercover cop, the detail that really struck me was this one:

According to a police report, Williams drove up to a female undercover officer and offered her $16 for oral sex.

i mean, sixteen dollars?!? i spend more than that in an average week on comic books. where does he get off—pun intended—thinking he can get a blowjob at such baragin basement prices?

but then i read this comment over at accidental mayor and it made a bit more sense:

The reason that $16 was the price is due to the fact that a "rock" of crack, on the street in Indianapolis, goes for between $10 and $20. The larger the rock the higher the cost or the smaller the rock the lower the price. A $16 rock is a decent one hit for a crack addict.

It is rather obvious to those of use who know why Mr.Willimas offered such an odd number like $16 rather than say round number like $20. Mr.Williams not only understood it's usually crack addicts working the streets as prostitutes but he also new what the going price was that these "crack whores" were paying in that neighborhood for a hit.

silly me. i hadn't realized the price of crack was so high these days. it's the inflation, i guess.

Sunday, March 23, 2008 
i would like... to color them!

Friday, March 21, 2008 
yeah, i've been busy
as i mentioned last weekend, i've been pretty busy trying to hit a deadline for work so that the book will be ready in time for an upcoming conference. plus, i've been spending much of the rest of my free time working on a new top-secret musical project that i think people will really enjoy. the end result: no time for blogging.

however, when i got out the scanner earlier this week to scan the erroneous star article, i spent a few minutes creating some scanner art using the cover art from wack cylinders; the image above is a taste of that. (more here.)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008 
translating tully
actual tully quote:

To be clear, lawmakers decided to take over pensions independent of Ballard. Nonetheless, the mayor does deserve credit [...]

translation: mayor ballard deserves credit for something he didn't do.

in what universe does this make sense?

also in the column: mayor ballard explains that he gave that embarrassingly bad performance to the statehouse on purpose. it was all part of his plan, you see.

Monday, March 17, 2008 
indystar gets it wrong

indystar gets it wrong 2

as promised, here are the scans of the erroneous front-page star story from march 8. as a reminder, the jury actually found in favor of the doctors.

if these pics are too small for you to read, just view 'em large.

Sunday, March 16, 2008 
that's so ryerson
today's sunday star features dennis ryerson's mea culpa about that royal screw-up on last saturday's front page:

Aweek ago a headline at the top of our front page was clear and to the ipoint: "Physicians lose child abuse suit." A secondary headline added that: "Plaintiff awarded $400,000 in case alleging doctors didn't report abuse."

Unfortunately, the main headline, as was the story under it, was as inaccurate as it was clear. A jury held Methodist Hospital responsible for not identifying and reporting suspected abuse of an 11-month-old child who was returned to his mother and later beaten to death by the mother's boyfriend. The jury ruled that the two physicians involved in the case, Dr. Gary Thompson and Dr. Michael Turner, were not liable.

No question, it was a very bad error.

first off, note that the lead sentence in the big apology itself contains two typos! that is so indy star. you couldn't write a more dead-on satire than that.

anyway, the gist of the piece is that yes, this was a snafu of epic proportions, they're not really sure why they messed up so badly (maybe because the verdict was announced right at press time), and they went above-and-beyond to make up for it by running a second front-pager the next day. not exactly encouraging, though i am glad for that last part.

you might recall that when i blogged about this story last week, i said i was getting my hands on a paper copy of the issue in question and scanning it. i do have that newspaper, but haven't gotten around to scanning it because i've been trying to hit a right deadline for work. right now i'm getting ready to see tosca, but i might have time to scan it tonight.

Thursday, March 13, 2008 
so what's the problem?
this indystar story curiously avoids ever mentioning wtf it's talking about. here's the seven-graf story in its entirety:

Controversial 'hamam' opens in Pike Twp.
A Pike Township business opened last week after a protracted battle with the city of Indianapolis, but area residents aren't happy about it.

Co-owner Julia Fonte describes Manana's Moroccan Hamam as, "a discreet facility for complete body cleansing and exfoliation in a unique, private setting," similar to an American spa treatment. Hamams are frequented, albeit separately, by both men and women in Islamic countries such as Morocco and Turkey.

After months and an estimated 150 phone calls, including to the Indiana Civil Liberties Union, Fonte said she was told the city wouldn't stand in the way of their opening.

Some Pike residents think the city caved in to political pressure and a fear of getting sued.

Pike Fire Marshal Steve Jones inspected the hamam last month and decided to discuss what he saw with other citizens.

"I'm saying this not as the fire marshal, but as Steve Jones, Pike Township resident," he said.

"It's the city's job to insure ordinances are being followed, but they've allowed her (Fonte) to redefine what it is that she does, and that sounds like a political cave. It fit the description of a bathhouse and that's why the city put it there. I don't think the city made a mistake classifying it like that, but it's easier (for the city) to let it go and hope nothing happens."

if you read that article, perhaps even a couple times, and still haven't the foggiest what is supposed to be controversial about this place, you're not alone. the story doesn't even attempt to explain.

this place is in my neighborhood, so it'd be nice to know why it's so controversial. i can't tell if it's because it's a bathhouse and therefore they're scared gay men will go there, or if the problem is that's is a turkish bath and therefore they're afraid a bunch of dirty turks and muslims will frequent the place. or is it both? i have no idea... anyone?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008 
carson FTW!
eff the haters, andré carson wins! with about 90% of precincts reporting, he has a 10-point lead. he'll be the second muslim in congress.

but this was just a warm-up. now andré needs to win a contentious primary.

today's a special day
most of my regulars surely already know this, but today is a very special day for indianapolis (or most of it). today we get our own special election, an election nobody else gets, because we're indiana's special little district.

unfortunately, i need to spend most of the day working, so i probably won't be blogging much. i'm sure other hoosier blogs will pick up the slack. if you can't bear my absence, just download and listen to my new album; it'll be like i'm right there next to you.

Monday, March 10, 2008 
a rising star, extinguished
shocking news today, as it's revealed that new york governor eliot spitzer is resigning after revelations that he'd utlized the services of a prostitution ring.

spitzer had gained a following on the blogosphere thanks to his victories as an ethics crusader: most notably for his work busting the major labels for payola. i'd written of him approvingly on this blog several times. this makes his sudden scandalous downfall all the more surprising:

Mr. Spitzer gained national attention when he served as attorney general with his relentless pursuit of Wall Street wrongdoing. As attorney general, he also had prosecuted at least two prostitution rings as head of the state's organized crime task force.

In one such case in 2004, Mr. Spitzer spoke with revulsion and anger after announcing the arrest of 16 people for operating a high-end prostitution ring out of Staten Island.

"This was a sophisticated and lucrative operation with a multitiered management structure," Mr. Spitzer said at the time. "It was, however, nothing more than a prostitution ring."

truly bizarre. as josh marshall said, "how exactly is it that someone who makes it his business to bust the chops of big wall street titans uses prostitutes?" this is ironically poor judgment.

more on elrod the moderate
jon elrod tries to bill himself as a moderate, but he isn't, as he demonstrated by sending out alarmist mailers about how andré carson "will be another vote for the pro-choice movement".

now, if he's willing to send out mailers about abortion, probably the most divisive wedge issue in the country, then you really didn't think he'd stop there, did you? behold, the jon elrod gun control mailer: (click to embiggen)

(i nicked this from sir hailstone, who posted it with pride, not realizing, or perhaps just not caring, that it doesn't exactly mesh with elrod's "moderate" image.)

that's right: andré wants you to be defenseless! tied up and subjected to all sorts of unpleasantness like golden-age wonder woman! that cad!

the mailer doesn't explicitly state what it is andré wants you to be defenseless against. i'm guessing it's the takeover by radical islam that elrod's supporters are so worried about.

Sunday, March 09, 2008 
star to readers: please ignore yesterday's front page
today's indy star:
A story on Page A1 in some editions Saturday incorrectly reported that a jury found against Dr. Gary Thompson and Dr. Michael Turner in connection with a 1998 child abuse case. The jury actually found in favor of both doctors. The story to the right reports the correct information. The Star apologizes for the error.

yes, that's page A1: a glaring error in an above-the-fold front-page headline:

the correct headline was Hospital found liable in child abuse suit, and the headline on today's story was Jury: Doctors not liable in child abuse suit. this is almost a dewey defeats truman-level mistake.

it's impossible to know how many people saw that headline and got the erroneous impression that the doctors had been found at fault, damaging their reputation. i wouldn't be surprised if they sue, but for the star's sake i hope they don't.

thanks to my mom for the tip; my parents received a copy of the misprinted edition, which i'm going to get from them and probably scan. (the image above is ironically taken from while they did catch their error and correct the online version, they never updated the image of their front page. click on "today's front page" and then click "previous" to get to saturday, march 8 to see what i'm talking about.)

speaking of special elections
by the way, remember dennis hastert? he was the last republican speaker of the house, who recently retired. well, yesterday there was a special election to fill his seat. democrat bill foster won that formerly-safe GOP seat.

the GOP lost the seat, despite the fact that the NRCC spent more than a million trying to keep it. in indianapolis, jon elrod isn't getting any such support from his party. his supporters try to spin it by saying "95% of his support comes from in-state", but what that really means is "nobody outside of indiana believes in jon elrod." then again, it's not like the NRCC could even afford to support elrod if it wanted to.

of course, the situation here is quite different, with andré carson facing stiff competition in the primary even if he wins the special. but this can't be a good sign for elrod.

jon elrod is SO moderate...
that he's sending out mailers like this (image stolen from tdw):

poor jon elrod. he knows he can't win in the 7th district as a right-winger. so he presents himself as a moderate, based in large part on his opposition to the marriage amendment. his actual positions on lgbt issues are muddled and uneven, but it's not like he can run on his support for the iraq war or the many other issues he's wrong on.

he's quietly in cahoots with eric miller's people—look closely at that mailer and you'll see it was paid for by, which is owned by miller acolytes. but because he's against the marriage amendment, some of miller's disciples are quietly working against him, anonymously buying up domains like and

so in trying to court moderate voters that elrod desperately needs if he has any hope of defeating andré carson, he's alienated some of his right-wing base. now, in an attempt to win that base back, he's sending out mailers on the wedgiest of wedge issues: abortion.

jon elrod is hardly a moderate. and if he's hoping for democrats to cross the aisle and vote for him, the absolute last thing he should be doing is sending out mailers reminding us that "Andre Carson will be another vote for the pro-choice movement in Washington, D.C."

thoughts on wack cylinders
wack cylinders is now available for free download! get it now!

so okay, we all know that my new album is called wack cylinders, it has cool databent cover art, and it's my first official solo release since 2004. (droplift II doesn't really count.) but what is it? what's it about? what does it sound like?

let's start at the beginning. about seven years ago, i started performing live, and had to face the same dilemma all electronic musicians face. how do you do it live? by its nature, most modern electronic music is heavily studio-based. effectively transferring that to a live setting is immensely difficult. since you can't bring your whole studio with you, the only way to get your live show to sound like the record is to basically play the recording itself... that or bring all your gear and play the sequence, which is almost the same thing.

in other words, a lot of electronic performances are little more than the artist pressing "play" a bunch of times. how do you make that compelling for an audience? and how do you present yourself and your music artistically in a way you can be proud of?

successful electronic musicians tackle this in different ways. some become djs and build up mad dj skills. some develop elaborate stage shows to distract from the fact that they aren't really doing anything musical onstage. some just get really good at their gear and essentially remix themselves live. and some take the path i eventually took: i gave up trying to duplicate my records, and i started improvising.

my process for live shows goes something like this. first, i record a bunch of raw material. usually, i'll do something like flip through the tv channels randomly for awhile, record that, and then run it through some kind of audio effect. then i'll burn these processed sounds to cd, along with any other samples i've collected recently, and at the show, i'll improvise on dj equipment using these recordings. (recently i've been using a laptop at shows instead, but the principles are the same.)

over the years i've developed and tweaked my improv style to the point where i feel pretty good about it. and i've accumulated a couple hundred cds full of raw audio, just waiting to be remixed. but i came upon a new dilemma: i had a distinctive live sound, but it didn't sound anything like any of my records!

thus wack cylinders was born. the idea behind wack cylinders is simple: to capture the essence of my live sound on a record. wack cylinders sounds like a stAllio! live show, but better, because i could delicately prepare for each session and clean up any mistakes afterward. it's like the platonic ideal of a stAllio! live show. many of the tracks were improvised live in the studio, and the rest were composed using similar techniques, or assembled out of improvised pieces.

another thing to note: this album is composed of 100% appropriated samples. but because of the way i created the raw material on which it's based, i honestly have no idea where the majority of those samples originally came from. a lot of the vocal samples i do know, but some of those i don't know either. in fact, there are two tracks on the album where i don't know where any of the samples came from. and there are a couple more where i have a rough idea where one of the samples came from but no solid details.

as the album neared completion, i realized i wasn't even close to done with the concept. thus, wack cylinders is part one of a trilogy i haven't named yet. part two is tentatively titled sword to your mother; i expect it to be more rhythmic, more like dance music. but i haven't started production on it yet, so i won't know for sure until it's done. since wack cylinders came out on march 9, 2008 (the day of the beginning of daylight saving time in the US), it'd be cool if sword to your mother came out on november 2 (the day DST ends), but that's not a promise.

so there you have it: wack cylinders. if you've heard me play live in the past few years and enjoyed it, you'll love this album. if you only know my work from previous albums, i think you're in for a surprise.

it's a free mp3 release, so download it, scrobble it, share it, and remix it if you're so inclined.

Saturday, March 08, 2008 
shorter gary welsh
shorter gary welsh: thank heavens for me, because i'm the only person brave enough to report that andré carson is a muslim.

Friday, March 07, 2008 
elrod ad made by friends of eric miller
jon elrod's first tv ad turned up on youtube today. you may have already heard about the embarrassing typos—both in the ad itself and in the email announcing it. (thomas from blue indiana managed to archive the original version of the ad before it got pulled and replaced by a corrected version.) but did you notice who paid for the ad, and who made it?

the ad was paid for by as i & other bloggers noted back in january, is hosted by—and was designed by—the firm main1media. main1media was founded by rick terry, an acolyte of notorious homophobe eric miller, and the firm works with miller to promote his anti-gay agenda. when confronted with these ties last month, elrod was unconcerned.

furthermore, the video was originally uploaded to a youtube account owned by main1media, suggesting that the ad was in fact produced by main1media. (this might explain the cheap production value and the amateurish failure to do a basic spell-check before they uploaded the video.)

this is another demonstration that despite what some may think, jon elrod isn't so great on lgbt issues.

Thursday, March 06, 2008 
new glitchy stAllio! video

this glitched-out footage from ramsay's kitchen nightmares has been sitting on my hard drive for months, waiting for the right opportunity. what could be a better opportunity than the pending release of my new album, wack cylinders, which comes out sunday morning (or saturday night for the nite owls)?

so here you go: the new video for the song "take your broke ass home" off wack cylinders. it's not the best song from the album, but it fit the best with the video footage. don't worry: other than the A-word in the title, the song and video are both totally safe for work.

if that version is too slow for you, here's an extra-glitchy version, which is basically just flashing colors. not recommended for epileptics.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008 
circuit bending videos
here's a video from one of my myspace friends titled how to circuit bend vol 1 part 1. i'm going to try to embed it, but if it doesn't work, i tried embedding it, but the embed code was all wonky and it didn't work, so here's the link to part 1.

and here's part 1.5, part 2, and part 2.5.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008 
so who gets indiana?
other blogs are already on top of this, but i'd be remiss if i didn't mention it at least briefly:

[Tony] Zirkle, who's seeking the Republican nomination in Congress' 2nd District, told a weekly newspaper, The Kokomo Perspective, that he questions whether desegregation has worked in the United States. He suggested that separating whites, blacks and other minorities by states could create a new sense of community and is an idea worth debating.

so under the zirkle plan, who gets indiana: blacks or whites? presumably the idea is to give minorities the crappy states, but who gets to pick which states are crappy? indy is my home and i like it here, but let's be honest, the state of indiana wouldn't be first to be picked for the kickball team.

trapped in the closet?
in a post yesterday (crossposted here), steph mineart explained why she isn't voting for jon elrod: she can't bear to vote for a closeted gay man, which she's convinced elrod is. she has no evidence that elrod is gay, only what she claims is highly tuned gaydar.

this prompted abdul to complain about it on his blog (not indyu, but the other one), as well as a chat on his radio show that demonstrated he didn't understand what steph had written. (hint: it has nothing to do with being married; look up the slang term "beard".)

as predicted, gary welsh went apoplectic, as he does whenever someone looks at elrod funny. but curiously, gary attacked abdul for repeating the rumor, not even mentioning steph's name.

now steph is on the receiving end of a DOS attack.

i've never met elrod, let alone slept with him, so i wouldn't know his orientation. and i wouldn't vote for him regardless, because he's wrong on most issues. but i realized that i have no idea if i'd vote for someone i thought was closeted. i've never thought about it before. naturally, i'd have no reservations voting for someone who was out of the closet, but growing up in indiana (with a few years of college in the upper south), i haven't had much opportunity.

for what it's worth, elrod says he's straight.

Sunday, March 02, 2008 
something else i learned today
charlotte allen in the washington post:

Depressing as it is, several of the supposed misogynist myths about female inferiority have been proven true.

all this time i've thought men & women were basically equal. now i know that it's been "proven true" that women are inferior! thanks for setting me straight, washington post!

you learn something new every day
from one of the two stories in today's indy star about jared fogle, the subway dude (emphasis mine):

Fogle and his wife, Elizabeth, recently divorced after six years of marriage, but they're not the first Hoosiers to divorce.

i'll bet you didn't know that!

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