On AutoTune

April 21, 2009

It’s now ‘in’ amongst the musical elitists to be against the use of AutoTune (a piece of software that automatically adjusts the pitch of a singer so it remains in tune.)  While I used to be completely opposed to its use, I’ve changed my mind.

I think so-called vocalists who do not write their own music and lyrics should not use AutoTune. When they do, there is nothing of them left in the song.

But, if you are the songwriter, then use AutoTune if  it helps get the music that’s inside of you out; that is, if it’s a means to expressing yourself artistically. Then work on your natural vocal ability as you continue to make music.



I know we see huge advertising campaigns, some celebrity backed, urging everyone to vote.  Well, I think that’s silly.  I’d rather the politically ignorant not vote, actually. Why would we want to encourage the uninformed to vote just for the sake of it? Encourage them to be adequately informed instead.

Also, wouldn’t it be better if all of these celebrities and organizations had a campaign focusing on the integrity of the vote, rather than just the act itself?  You can vote all you want, but if they are not counted properly, if there is no tangible accountability, then the act of voting is all for show.

I’d much rather see all of this energy for getting out the vote redirected to insuring the integrity of the vote and and for voter education.


Does Not Compute

January 9, 2008

by the Understudy

On the campaign trail, we often hear (even from recognized media outlets) about the overwhelming presence of Ron Paul everywhere you turn. Yesterday, Anderson Cooper of CNN noted that everywhere he went in New Hampshire, he saw significant Ron Paul support.

At the same time, it’s also becoming more and more common to hear from the media about the dismal support of Giuliani. Staffers reportedly cannot fill venues, there’s little enthusiasm—even today a personality from 23/6 posted a video of a Giuliani event in New Hampshire showing only a smattering of supporters, and little enthusiasm.

So, why is it that Ron Paul and Giuliani virtually tied in votes in the NH primary? Something about that just doesn’t seem to compute even if we take into consideration the zeal of Ron Paul supporters. It just doesn’t seem to add up.


Giuliani Is A Dangerous Man

November 7, 2007

He lies with staggering impunity. But here’s the thing: he does it with such conviction and authority that people who don’t study the matter will believe him and be utterly convinced that Giuliani is speaking the gospel truth, and they will prove almost impossible to shake from this conviction. Giuliani is a dangerous man. Consider yourself warned.

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by The Understudy

On November 5th, 2007, supporters donated $4.3 million dollars to Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul—the self-proclaimed “Champion of the Constitution.” This one day total sets a new record for funds raised by a 2008 GOP presidential candidate in one day. (The record previously belonged to Mitt Romney who raised $3.1 million on a single day in January.)


Begun by independent supporters, this ‘money bomb’ fundraising effort gained attention through the website thisnovember5th.com, where nearly 20,000 people pledged to give at least $100 to the campaign on November 5th 2007.

It remains to be seen how ‘major’ media will cover this stunning fund raising drive. In the past, they’ve been inclined to preface Ron Paul stories and interviews by stressing certain phrases, including ‘long-shot candidate’ and ‘low in the polls’ in addition to characterizing his support as being online-only (as if 30,000 individual online donors don’t also exist in reality).

Now, with this demonstrated and unequivocal support, they may not be able to justify those characterizations anymore unless they continue to rely solely on land-line telephone polls of a couple hundred people—many of which do not even include the name ‘Ron Paul’ and therefore bring down his overall polling average significantly (along with a host of other factors that may be contributing to the discrepancy in ‘traditional’ polling numbers).

One interesting angle employed by CNN’s early coverage of the November 5th donations was the continued stressing that the numbers could not be verified—until the end of the quarter. While technically true, it does seem a bit odd how they’ve never used that angle with anyone else’s fundraising events. Perhaps they are suggesting that it may not be real, or perhaps they are just in shock.

One thing is for sure—the Constitutional message of Ron Paul has taken hold and produced a remarkable showing of financial support that not only disproves naysayer claims that Ron Paul supporters aren’t ‘real’, but also erodes confidence in ‘traditional’ land-line political polling as an accurate barometer of, well, anything. Perhaps certain key players in the news media will kick the habit of just disseminating the ‘party line’ and will start spending more time interviewing and understanding Ron Paul.


Four times on October 16, MSNBC anchors uncritically aired Rudy Giuliani’s declaration, “Thou shalt not attack another Republican. So, I’m going to try to follow that commandment as much as I can.” However, none of the anchors or political analysts featured during the segments noted that Giuliani has, in fact, repeatedly attacked Romney or Ron Paul

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Civil liberties groups and many Democrats said it goes too far, enabling the gov’t to wiretap US residents communicating with overseas parties without oversight from courts or Congress. Democrats wanted tighter restrictions on gov’t surveillance, but yielded in the face of veto threats and the impending recess. [I guess vacation is more important.]

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