Thursday, April 28, 2011

4.28.11 Bee-otch of the Day: the birthers

Name: the birthers
Ages: various
Occupations: various
Last Seen: everywhere
Bee-otched For: having no room to talk


Donald Trump, Victoria Jackson and the rest, you're all fired.

It's official: on Wednesday, the Obama administration released the president's long-form birth certificate in hopes of ending all the talk regarding rumors spread by people who all believe that he wasn't born in America. It's further proof that those people, the "birthers" are nothing more than KKK types who are all living that lie that he was born in Kenya - his late father's birth country - and not the good 'ol U.S. of A.

In order to be U.S. president, one of the qualifications is that you must be a U.S. citizen, born on U.S. soil. There was a similar controversy regarding Obama's opponent in the 2008 election, John McCain, who was born in the Panama Canal. I would imagine that there would be Democratic "birthers" in this situation, too, but McCain - believe it or not - is legal since technically, that area of Panama was considered U.S. at that time.
Ya know folks, the birthers, the Tea Partiers and Republicans have no room to talk. Obama's not a Muslim, he's not a socialist and guess what? HE'S AN AMERICAN! So SHUT THE FUCK UP!

I know, I know, today, the Rushes, Hannitys and Becks will cry Photoshop, WHO CARES? All these jerks do nothing but persuade us Americans that the rich don't need to be taxed and that if you lose your job, fuck you. Hell, I'll imagine that Donald Trump's hairpiece will talk to him in his sleep tonight some spun shit that won't make sense. Jerry Springer is right. Trump is like that punk-ass kid in the back of the classroom who taunts people and nothing gets done.

In the end, the whole world needs to shut up. Obama's an American, and guess what? More Americans like him more than Trump. Prepare for a second term.

Thanks, but there's other things to talk about. Say, did you know that gas is now over $4 per gallon? 


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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

4.27.11 Heroes of the Day: Eric Zapata, Poly Styrene and Phoebe Snow

Names: Eric Zapata, Poly Styrene and Phoebe Snow
Ages: deceased
Occupations: policeman, singers
Last Seen: the great beyond
Awarded For: being an asset to society


As the old saying goes, death happens in threes.

OK, so most people outside of west Michigan never heard of Eric Zapata, but to the people of Kalamazoo, he was a hero. He was a man who gave his life to protect others as a public safety officer. A week ago Monday, Zapata, 35, responded to a call of shots being fired. However, when he arrived at the house, he asked the man standing on the porch, and he shot Zapata, killing him. Afterward, he then shot himself.
His funeral was yesterday at Miller Auditorium, where hundreds of police officers, family and friends from all over - even from Florida - came up to pay respect to a man who had a coward take his life, only to take his own.

Then again, many never heard of Marianne Joan Elliott-Said - aka Poly Styrene - either. She was one of the first ladies of punk rock in the 1970's as the outspoken lead singer of the British band X-Ray Spex, best known for their 1977 sax-fed anthem "Oh Bondage, Up Yours!" Styrene's voice was called by critics as "powerful enough to drill holes through sheet metal". Many viewed her as a leader of the riot grrrrl movement in rock since she made a statement on the studio recording of the song: "Some people think little girls should be seen and not heard - well I think, oh bondage, up yours!"

The band had considerable success in their home land of England, where several of their records where top 40 smashes. Here in America, it was another story as top 40 radio ignored punk to a tee while focusing on the mind-numbing sounds of disco. Styrene kept performing after the Spex broke up in 1979, but earlier this year, she had announced that she had been battling breast, lung and spinal cancer. She died on Monday, aged 53.

Eric Zapata was a hero for putting his life on the line. Poly Styrene was a hero for making it cool for a chick to sing punk rock. But, it was Phoebe Snow who realized that family was way more important than that of a career.

In 1975, 24-year-old Phoebe Ann Laub - who got her famous stage name from an early 1900's advertising icon for the Lackawanna Railroad - scored a number five pop hit on the Billboard charts with "Poetry Man". Just a few months later, what was supposed to be one of the proudest moments of her life turned tragic, and detrimental to her career.

She gave birth to a girl, Valerie, who was born with severe brain damage. Worse, her husband left her. Her label wanted her to keep recording new material and tour, but she knew that Valerie was priority one. She recorded only four albums in the 80's and 90's and made only a handful of appearances. Howard Stern was one of her biggest fans, even inviting her to perform at his wedding in 2008.

Valerie Laub was finally freed from her crippled body in 2007 at the age of 31. On his show Tuesday, Howard Stern commented that offstage, she was always in tears since Valerie was her life and it was taken away from her. Phoebe suffered a stroke last year, and never recovered from it. She was 60 years old.

Maybe in Heaven, Phoebe Snow and Poly Styrene can finally have a jam session together, and Eric Zapata can be the security.


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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

4.26.11 Bee-otch of the Day: WWE

Name: WWE
Age: 59
Occupation: sports entertainment company
Last Seen: Stanford, CT
Bee-otched For: getting Kong'd


Once again, World Wrestling Entertain - er, the WWE is making a bad decision.

Not only is the WWE no longer referring the sport that made it famous as "wrestling", but the WWE has signed a woman who actually makes Vickie Guerrero a hot piece of ass.

Her name is Kia Stevens, but in the WWE, her new name is Kharma. Previously, she wrestled in TNA as Awesome Kong. She was signed to WWE since December. The WWE have been airing promos for her for the past few weeks, showing a darkened image of her breaking apart Bratz dolls while releasing an evil laugh.

Bear in mind why she was released from TNA: it was because she didn't get along with Bubba the Love Sponge. She even went as far as to attack him backstage during a taping of their weekly show Impact. Because of the environment between her and Bubba, she asked for her release from the company, even going as far as not showing up for work. She was eventually released from TNA while Bubba also quit the company.

True, it's nice that the WWE is bringing diversity into their company, don't expect Kharma to be a hit. Why? Simple: most of their fans are young white dudes, and seeing a morbidly obese woman with a big, wide ass in the ring is a major turnoff. Just ask Gabourey Sidibe. What has she done after Precious? Really.

The point is, nobody likes fat women, period. Black, white, you name it. But, I do see some light in their use of Kharma: it'll teach people that fat women are looked upon as pigs, and it's true. Maybe she'll encourage legions of female WWE fans to shed a few pounds. Hell, it worked for Vickie, even though she's still looked at as a pig.

The WWE: making bad decisions since, well, forever.


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Monday, April 25, 2011

4.25.11 Bee-otch of the Day: the oil companies

Name: the oil companies
Ages: some over 100
Occupation: producer of the world's oil
Last Seen: everywhere
Bee-otched For: gouging fear into our hearts


Watch out, BP, Shell, Speedway/Marathon and all the rest, because Obama's watching you like a hawk.

On Wednesday, the president spoke out at a small college in Virginia and told the audience that he's blaming speculators for boosting gas prices over the past several weeks. He told the crowd that the country and the world has enough oil to support our automobiles and that there's no reason for people to listen to these people who are all crying that gas prices will go over $4 per gallon.

Right now in Grand Rapids, the average price is hovering around $3.95, about 10 cents more than what most people are paying nationally. The price of a barrel of crude oil is around $110.

Now, the Obama administration is cracking down on speculators to see if there's a link between them and the oil companies. The administration is also looking into gas stations that gouge their customers and as always, encouraging auto makers to manufacture cars that are eco and consumer-friendly.

You know, folks, we're scared easily. Bush won his second term because his White House released an Osama video three days before the 2004 election. Let's not forget that the great economic collapse of 2008 occurred when our government handed over billions of dollars over to banks and corrupt companies because the average person cannot pay over $4 per gallon in gas.

Now, it's the same 'ol shit. Speculators tread fear into the average American's heart and they win. 

ExxonMobil made nearly $40 billion in 2008 while everybody and their kin was bankrupt. It's no lie: we need to crack down on speculators and prove to them that what they're doing should be VERY illegal. BP shouldn't be dancing around with cash money in their pockets while the effects of the Gulf Coast oil spill will be felt for decades to come.

Once again, I can't wait for the electric car to come out of hibernation. 


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THE BACK PAGE: Detroit Gets a New Rock Station... Kinda

Will the new 94.3 The Bone break a one share?

For years, rock fans in Detroit have been wanting a breath of fresh air in their selections for rock radio.

When it came to new rock, Detroiters could choose between 101.1 WRIF or 88.7 CIMX - 89X out of Windsor. But, both stations have seen their fair share of shortcomings: The Riff plays an abundance of classic rock from the 60's, 70's and 80's while 89X is an alternative rocker forced to abide by the dreaded CanCon rules, forcing them to air at least 20% Canadian content to please the government.

Detroit has some big companies running their stations: WRIF is owned by Greater Media while 89X is owned by Bell Media. Clear Channel owns a lot of stations in the area, but they're not interested it seems in giving Detroiters another choice for rock, especially since 106.7 The Drive was a dud (and for absolute good reason). CBS ran 97.1 K-Rock/Extreme Radio into the ground years ago, and don't even ask Radio One for their help.

Hard to believe it, but Detroit had some great, kick-ass hard and alternative stations back in the day: 102.7 Z-Rock, K-Rock, Planet 96.3 and The Edge @105dotone. Sadly, low ratings and revenue killed these stations, and The Riff and 89X - both founded in 1971 and 1989 respectively - have been the sole survivors after all these years.

Until now.

Last week, an upstate New York-based company, Martz Communications started two small stations in the Detroit market: 104.7 The Oasis and 94.3 The Bone. While The Oasis is satellite-fed smooth jazz, The Bone is an automated modern rocker, spinning tunes that cover both active and alternative genres. Some of the artists The Bone plays include Foo Fighters, KoRn, Rise Against, Black Keys, Florence and the Machine and yes, Kid Rock.

What makes 94.3 The Bone even more special is the fact that they're not afraid to take shots against both Riff and 89X. As a matter of fact, their website is (drumroll please) exists, too, but it goes to Greater Media's Detroit cluster's website. On the air and their website, The Bone attacks 89X for the fact that they're technically a Canadian station by law. Even their website screams America, too, with pictures of young models draped in American flags and bikinis.

But there's one huge problem with The Bone: good luck getting their signal.

You see, 94.3 The Bone is by American law a translator station, relaying the signal of another station. So, Martz apparently went to the folks at WGPR and leased their HD2 and 3 subchannels to run their programming on. Apparently, WGPR, owned by the black Freemason group, is cool with having smooth jazz and alternative on their station, especially since WGPR tried a smooth jazz/R&B hybrid on their main signal a few years ago. As for modern rock, bear in mind that The Electrifyin' Mojo had Depeche Mode and The B-52's on the 1's and 2's back in the day.

Of course, I can't name a single person who has an HD radio. Why even bother having one when there's smartphones and whatever doing a better job as-is with music? As for 94.3 - whose call sign is the crazy-sounding W232CA - they broadcast with a whopping 99 watts. Plus, from what I've heard, their transmitter is not in the best area to broadcast a modern rock format in Detroit. On one side, there's the ghetto and on the other side, there's the affluent section with snobby rich folks.

Tragically, even though The Bone ain't too bad sounding and they have a nice variety, this station's gonna be another tragedy in the world of modern radio. If it gets a .3 or .4 share, it'll be damn lucky. Otherwise, the folks at Martz have thrown their money away.

Starting a new rock station in Detroit: it's a good idea... On paper.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

4.21.11 Bee-otch of the Day: WOOD-TV


Name: WOOD-TV 8
Age: 62
Occupation: NBC-TV station
Last Seen: Grand Rapids, MI
Bee-otched For: firing their leader


In the great words of the 1980's hair metal band Cinderella, "Don't Know What You Got Till It's Gone".

For the past few weeks, people had been wondering where WOOD-TV 8's lead news anchor, Suzanne Geha went. Some speculated a long vacation since they were still using her in promos.

But, the worst has happened. Suzanne Geha has been let go from WOOD-TV.

On her Facebook page, Geha - who is probably in her late 50's/early 60's - avoided pulling a Howard Beale and released this statement:

"With much regret, I confirm I no longer work for WOOD-TV-8. This is a very sad day for me. West Michigan is a great place to broadcast news. I want my colleagues to know what a privilege it is working with you. I want my viewers to know what an honor it is bringing you the stories that affect your lives and your communities. Thank you for your loyal support through the years. I hope I can count on it in the future."
-Suzanne Geha
Meanwhile, WOOD-TV did release this statement publicly:

"Suzanne Geha is no longer with WOOD-TV 8. We thank her for her many years of commitment and we wish her all the best."

The statement concludes stating that Brian Sterling and Susan Shaw will now be the station's nighttime anchor team while Emily Linnert and Brett Thomas will continue to co-host Daybreak.

Talk about a weak statement regarding somebody who's worked for you for a combined 30+ years.

Suzanne had two tours of duty at WOOD-TV. She got her start in college at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo and eventually worked at WKNR-1400 in Battle Creek. She came to WOOD-TV - then WOTV - in 1974 as a reporter but left in 1978 to go to WXYZ-TV in Detroit as a weekend anchor and reporter. She returned to WOTV in 1983 and stayed there for the next 28 years.

Her firing has left many in west Michigan beyond shocked, including her former co-anchor Tom Van Howe, now the co-anchor at CBS affiliate WWMT channel 3. He told the Grand Rapids Press that he's shocked over their decision to can her. "So, that's the send off she gets? My word... My god, I don't even know how to respond to that. I am simply shocked." He also told the Press that Geha was the face of WOOD-TV News and will be for a very long time.

Suzanne was a woman that you loved or hated or even both. The niece of legendary White House reporter Helen Thomas, Geha, who is of Lebanese decent, was often the butt of jokes for her age, especially on such morning shows as WGRD's Free Beer and Hot Wings. I could have sworn that on one morning that I've heard the program, one of the guys commented that she had a "varicose vagina".

Varicose vagina or not, I felt that Geha was a decent newswoman who lived and breathed the news. Some years back, I was watching WOOD-TV at 4:20 in the morning during an Amber Alert and Suzanne popped on the screen looking tired and haggard. She announced that the Alert had stopped because the little girl that was kidnapped was found murdered. Sad news indeed, but it showed Suzanne's commitment towards doing the news, even if she had to spend all night at WOOD-TV studios.

But of course, like most other TV stations, WOOD-TV has had its setbacks and cost-cutting because of owner LIN Media's penny-pinching. For one thing, the master control for WOOD-TV is no longer in Grand Rapids, but rather at sister WISH-TV in Indianapolis. Also, Suzanne's not the only anchor WOOD-TV's let go; Larry Neinhaus and Jennifer Moss were both shown the door due to budget cuts although at least Moss was given a proper send-off with tributes throughout her Daybreak show.

Sadly, WOOD-TV's product has downgraded over the years thanks to bad decisions from management such as firing solid anchors like Geha and Neinhaus, but also dumping a shitload of money into their lame-ass midday show eightWest and keeping morons like Terri DeBoer - who made headlines in 2006 when she held a fundraiser for then-gubernatorial candidate Dick DeVos - and Brian Sterling, who was busted for drunk driving several years back. What's even more unfortunate is the fact that they still have the best news product in town since WZZM-13 is too cutsey, Fox 17 is somewhat ho-hum (their news music's too laid back for a news theme) and WWMT's too focused on Kalamazoo (not to mention that they JUST NOW are airing their newscasts in 16 X 9 a year or two after everybody else started doing it).

In the end, it really shows that the media business is a sad little whore, and I'm only blogging about and am not in it myself. When you have somebody work for you for 30 years, you should give them a lot more respect than just giving them one sentence. Suzanne deserved way better than this. I feel extremely sorry for her and her family, and hope that one day, she'll be back on her feet. Because of their decision to fire Geha, I will consider watching WOOD-TV much less.

Thanks, WOOD-TV. I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore.


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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

4.20.11 Bee-otch of the Day: Rick Snyder

Name: Rick Snyder
Age: 53
Occupation: governor of Michigan
Last Seen: Ann Arbor, MI
Bee-otched For: turning into a dictator


It's official: Michigan's getting some change.

And change ISN'T good.

As reported by Rachel Maddow, the city of Benton Harbor here in Michigan is now under attack by this state's newly-elected Republican governor Rick Snyder. Last week, the town of 10,000 souls was stripped of all its elected officials, including its mayor and city commission and replaced with an unelected Emergency Financial Manager named Joseph Harris. Benton Harbor is the first town affected by Gov. Snyder's new law that allows the state to take over failing communities with an appointed EFM, even stripping people of their union rights.
Benton Harbor is a twin town to St. Joseph in southwest Michigan near the Michiana border. The two towns do have slightly similar populations - St. Joe's is 8,000 - but St. Joe is predominately white while Benton Harbor is mostly black. Looking at the satellite map of the two towns on Maddow's show, St. Joe has a rural-like feel with lots of trees while Benton Harbor is a concrete jungle.

But sadly, Benton Harbor has had its major share of problems, mainly tied to its biggest manufacturer Whirlpool sending most of its jobs overseas and leaving acres of unused land where factories used to be. For years, developers have wanted to redevelop the land into condos and a golf course, and it would also include a public park that's been around since 1917.

Apparently, the main reason for Snyder and his goons taking over the town is so this rich white man's land could take over the town, whose average citizen only makes $10,000 per year. Not to mention, its schools are falling apart.

But, if Snyder can take over Benton Harbor, he can do the same for other predominately-black towns such as Flint and Detroit. He can fire their elected leaders and appoint his henchmen to tell those niggers who live there that they don't like their kind. The truth is, I understand. Flint and Detroit suck. But, it's not the black folks' fault. It's because of the severe downfall of the auto industry, caused by greedy rich white people who are all against giving their employees a fair shake and for busting the unions.

Detroit hasn't had a black mayor in over 40 years. I could only imagine if Snyder fired Dave Bing and replaced him with some Republican jackass. It'll be 1967 all over again.

Also, SHAME on the mainstream media for virtually ignoring this story! I Googled the info to do this BOTD and all I saw was Maddow, Daily Kos and Democracy Now! Thankfully, the South Bend media's talking about it, but I don't hear much about it elsewhere.

Folks, we need jobs, not country clubs. We need to convince companies to stay in America and not go overseas. Sadly, however, we're too damn stupid to find the "Made in America" label when we shop. Instead, we've been made into fools thinking that price is better than quality. This is why Whirlpool's jobs in Benton Harbor are now limited to a call center and corporate offices.

But in the end, don't blame me, I voted for Virg Bernero.


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