Tuesday, February 13, 2007

1980s music continued

Here is the rest of my list of great music from the 1980s picking up with the year I went to college. The first part is here.
As you can see there is a precipitous decline in the number of songs each year as we move forward in time. Why is this? Did my musical tastes stagnate over time the further I got away from my high school years? Or was there something else going on? My friend Jose Johnson maintains that the early ‘80s were an unprecedented time when multiple genres of music were experiencing a renaissance and were all crossing over into mainstream pop at the same time. Today the music market is so fragmented that it is difficult for any artist to have that kind of mass appeal.

Thriller - Michael Jackson
Girls Just Wanna Have Fun - Cyndi Lauper
Footloose - Kenny Loggins
Legs - ZZ Top
Like A Virgin - Madonna
Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go - Wham
Dancing In the Dark - Bruce Springsteen
Jump - Van Halen
Panama - Van Halen
Hot For Teacher - Van Halen
All Night Long - Billy Squier
Rock Me Tonight - Billy Squier
Rebel Yell - Billy Idol
Jokerman - Bob Dylan
When Doves Cry - Prince
Pride (In the Name of Love) - U2
What’s Love Got To Do With It - Tina Turner
I Feel For You - Chaka Kahn
Against All Odds - Phil Collins
Sister Christian - Night Ranger
Karma Chameleon - Culture Club
Missing You - John Waite
Cover Me - Bruce Springsteen
Ghostbusters - Ray Parker Jr.
Let’s Go Crazy - Prince
I Want A New Drug - Huey Lewis and The News
99 Luftballoons - Nena
Owner of a Lonely Heart - Yes
The Reflex - Duran Duran
Will the Wolf Survive - Los Lobos
Valotte - Julian Lennon
Pink Houses - John Mellencamp
Don’t Answer Me - Alan Parsons Project
Somebody’s Watching Me - Rockwell
Hold Me Now - Thompson Twins
We’re Not Gonna Take It - Twisted Sister
You Might Think - The Cars
Round and Round - Ratt
Better Be Good To Me - Tina Turner
I’m So Excited - Pointer Sisters
I’m Still Standing - Elton John
Nobody Told Me - John Lennon
On the Dark Side - John Cafferty and The Beaver Brown Band
You Look So Good In Love - George Strait
Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler) - Alabama
If You’re Going To Play In Texas - Alabama
Mama He’s Crazy - The Judds
Time After Time - Cyndi Lauper
Rock You Like a Hurricane - Scorpions

All She Wants To Do Is Dance - Don Henley
Sea of Love - Honeydrippers
California Girls - David Lee Roth
Walking on Sunshine - Katrina and The Waves
Relax - Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Glory Days - Bruce Springsteen
Centerfield - John Fogerty
You Spin Me - Dead or Alive
Material Girl - Madonna
(Don’t You) Forget About Me - Simple Minds
The Heat is On - Glenn Frey
Summer of ‘69 - Bryan Adams
Born in the USA - Bruce Springsteen
Money For Nothing - Dire Straits
I Want To Know What Love Is - Foreigner
We Are The World - USA for Africa
Some Like it Hot - Power Station
Everybody Wants To Rule the World - Tears for Fears
Shout - Tears for Fears
The Power of Love - Huey Lewis and The News
Life in a Northern Town - Dream Academy
One Night In Bangkok - Murray Head
Small Town - John Mellencamp
And She Was - Talking Heads
Don’t Come Around Here No More - Tom Petty
Sleeping Bag - ZZ Top
Dead Man’s Party - Oingo Boingo
Take On Me - a-ha
Raspberry Beret - Prince
If You Love Somebody Set Them Free - Sting
Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind - George Strait
Can't Fight This Feeling - REO Speedwagon
One More Night - Phil Collins
Sussdio - Phil Collins
Sun City - Artists Against Apartheid
Tonight It's You - Cheap Trick

Addicted To Love - Robert Palmer
Kiss - Prince
ROCK in the USA - John Mellencamp
Walk This Way - Run DMC/Aerosmith
Walk Like an Egyptian - The Bangles
You Give Love A Bad Name - Bon Jovi
The Future’s So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades - Timbuk3
Sledgehammer - Peter Gabriel
Higher Love - Steve Winwood
Word Up - Cameo
Why Can’t This Be Love - Van Halen
Everybody Have Fun Tonight - Wang Chung
Walk of Life - Dire Straits
Rock Me Amadeus - Falco
Like A Rock - Bob Seger
Got My Mind Set On You - George Harrison
Invisible Touch - Genesis
Land of Confusion - Genesis
Amanda - Boston
The Way It Is - Bruce Hornsby and the Range
Press - Paul McCartney
You Can Call Me Al - Paul Simon
Graceland - Paul Simon
When the Heart Rules the Mind - GTR
Spirit in the Sky - Doctor and the Medics
What You Need - INXS
Manic Monday - The Bangles
Tuff Enuff - The Fabulous Thunderbirds
Diggin’ Up Bones - Randy Travis
She and I - Alabama
Honkey Tonk Man - Dwight Yoakum
Guitars and Cadillacs - Dwight Yoakum
Sara - Starship
Living in America - James Brown

Livin’ On A Prayer - Bon Jovi
Fight For Your Right (To Party) - Beastie Boys
La Bamba - Los Lobos
Faith - George Michael
Big Time - Peter Gabriel
With Or Without You - U2
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Lookin’ For - U2
Bad - Michael Jackson
Touch of Grey - Grateful Dead
Diamonds on the Souls of Her Shoes - Paul Simon
Funky Town - Pseudo Echo
Keep Your Hands To Yourself - Georgia Satellites
(I Just) Died In Your Arms - Cutting Crew
U Got The Look - Prince
We’ll Be Together - Sting
One I Love - REM
Brilliant Disguise - Bruce Springsteen
Ocean Front Property - George Strait
All My Ex’s Live In Texas - George Strait
Am I Blue - George Strait
Forever and Ever, Amen - Randy Travis
Little Sister - Dwight Yoakum
Everybody Have Fun Tonight - Wang Chung
Big Love - Fleetwood Mac
Is This Love - Whitesnake

Sweet Child O’ Mine - Guns N Roses
Red Red Wine - UB40
Pour Some Sugar On Me - Def Leppard
Welcome To The Jungle - Guns N Roses
Paradise City - Guns N Roses
KoKoMo - Beach Boys
Need You Tonight - INXS
Devil Inside - INXS
The Way You Make Me Feel - Michael Jackson
Bad Medicine - Bon Jovi
Don’t Worry Be Happy - Bobbie McFerrin
What I Am - Edie Brickell and The New Bohemians
Cult of Personality - Living Color
It’s the End of the World As We Know It - REM
Don’t Believe the Hype - Public Enemy
Tomorrow People - Ziggy Marley
Simply Irresistable - Robert Palmer
Dirty Diana - Michael Jackson
Desire - U2
Don’t Be Cruel - Cheap Trick
Fast Car - Tracy Chapman
When It’s Love - Van Halen
Streets of Bakersfield - Dwight Yoakum/Buck Owens
Love Bites - Def Leppard
Handle With Care - Traveling Wilburys
Beds Are Burning - Midnight Oil

Love Shack - B-52s
Bust A Move - Young MC
Paradise City - Guns N Roses
Wild Thing - Tone Loc
Funky Cold Medina - Tone Loc
She Drives Me Crazy - Fine Young Cannibals
Closer To Fine - Indigo Girls
Love In An Elevator - Aerosmith
We Didn’t Start the Fire - Billy Joel
Batdance - Prince
Stand - REM
Sowing the Seeds of Love - Tears for Fears
I Won’t Back Down - Tom Petty
One - Metallica
Straight Up - Paula Abdul
The House is Rockin’ - Stevie Ray Vaughn
Crossfire - Stevie Ray Vaughn
Cathy’s Clown - Reba McEntire
Killin’ Time - Clint Black
High Cotton - Alabama
Ace In the Hole - George Strait
OPP - Naughty By Nature
End of the Line - Traveling Wilburys

Monday, February 12, 2007

The way out

Before it disappears behind a wall, I’m posting this entire column by Lt. Gen. William Odom, Reagan’s former NSA director, because it exposes every myth about the war in Iraq and spells out precisely the course we need to take to turn a “tragic defeat into strategic recovery.”

Victory Is Not an Option
The Mission Can't Be Accomplished -- It's Time for a New Strategy

By William E. Odom
Sunday, February 11, 2007; B01

The new National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq starkly delineates the gulf that separates President Bush's illusions from the realities of the war. Victory, as the president sees it, requires a stable liberal democracy in Iraq that is pro-American. The NIE describes a war that has no chance of producing that result. In this critical respect, the NIE, the consensus judgment of all the U.S. intelligence agencies, is a declaration of defeat.
Its gloomy implications -- hedged, as intelligence agencies prefer, in rubbery language that cannot soften its impact -- put the intelligence community and the American public on the same page. The public awakened to the reality of failure in Iraq last year and turned the Republicans out of control of Congress to wake it up. But a majority of its members are still asleep, or only half-awake to their new writ to end the war soon.
Perhaps this is not surprising. Americans do not warm to defeat or failure, and our politicians are famously reluctant to admit their own responsibility for anything resembling those un-American outcomes. So they beat around the bush, wringing hands and debating "nonbinding resolutions" that oppose the president's plan to increase the number of U.S. troops in Iraq.
For the moment, the collision of the public's clarity of mind, the president's relentless pursuit of defeat and Congress's anxiety has paralyzed us. We may be doomed to two more years of chasing the mirage of democracy in Iraq and possibly widening the war to Iran. But this is not inevitable. A Congress, or a president, prepared to quit the game of "who gets the blame" could begin to alter American strategy in ways that will vastly improve the prospects of a more stable Middle East.
No task is more important to the well-being of the United States. We face great peril in that troubled region, and improving our prospects will be difficult. First of all, it will require, from Congress at least, public acknowledgment that the president's policy is based on illusions, not realities. There never has been any right way to invade and transform Iraq. Most Americans need no further convincing, but two truths ought to put the matter beyond question:

First, the assumption that the United States could create a liberal, constitutional democracy in Iraq defies just about everything known by professional students of the topic. Of the more than 40 democracies created since World War II, fewer than 10 can be considered truly "constitutional" -- meaning that their domestic order is protected by a broadly accepted rule of law, and has survived for at least a generation. None is a country with Arabic and Muslim political cultures. None has deep sectarian and ethnic fissures like those in Iraq.
Strangely, American political scientists whose business it is to know these things have been irresponsibly quiet. In the lead-up to the March 2003 invasion, neoconservative agitators shouted insults at anyone who dared to mention the many findings of academic research on how democracies evolve. They also ignored our own struggles over two centuries to create the democracy Americans enjoy today. Somehow Iraqis are now expected to create a constitutional order in a country with no conditions favoring it.
This is not to say that Arabs cannot become liberal democrats. When they immigrate to the United States, many do so quickly. But it is to say that Arab countries, as well as a large majority of all countries, find creating a stable constitutional democracy beyond their capacities.

Second, to expect any Iraqi leader who can hold his country together to be pro-American, or to share American goals, is to abandon common sense. It took the United States more than a century to get over its hostility toward British occupation. (In 1914, a majority of the public favored supporting Germany against Britain.) Every month of the U.S. occupation, polls have recorded Iraqis' rising animosity toward the United States. Even supporters of an American military presence say that it is acceptable temporarily and only to prevent either of the warring sides in Iraq from winning. Today the Iraqi government survives only because its senior members and their families live within the heavily guarded Green Zone, which houses the U.S. Embassy and military command.

As Congress awakens to these realities -- and a few members have bravely pointed them out -- will it act on them? Not necessarily. Too many lawmakers have fallen for the myths that are invoked to try to sell the president's new war aims. Let us consider the most pernicious of them.

1) We must continue the war to prevent the terrible aftermath that will occur if our forces are withdrawn soon.

Reflect on the double-think of this formulation. We are now fighting to prevent what our invasion made inevitable! Undoubtedly we will leave a mess -- the mess we created, which has become worse each year we have remained. Lawmakers gravely proclaim their opposition to the war, but in the next breath express fear that quitting it will leave a blood bath, a civil war, a terrorist haven, a "failed state," or some other horror. But this "aftermath" is already upon us; a prolonged U.S. occupation cannot prevent what already exists.

2) We must continue the war to prevent Iran's influence from growing in Iraq.

This is another absurd notion. One of the president's initial war aims, the creation of a democracy in Iraq, ensured increased Iranian influence, both in Iraq and the region. Electoral democracy, predictably, would put Shiite groups in power -- groups supported by Iran since Saddam Hussein repressed them in 1991. Why are so many members of Congress swallowing the claim that prolonging the war is now supposed to prevent precisely what starting the war inexorably and predictably caused? Fear that Congress will confront this contradiction helps explain the administration and neocon drumbeat we now hear for expanding the war to Iran.
Here we see shades of the Nixon-Kissinger strategy in Vietnam: widen the war into Cambodia and Laos. Only this time, the adverse consequences would be far greater. Iran's ability to hurt U.S. forces in Iraq are not trivial. And the anti-American backlash in the region would be larger, and have more lasting consequences.

3) We must prevent the emergence of a new haven for al-Qaeda in Iraq.

But it was the U.S. invasion that opened Iraq's doors to al-Qaeda. The longer U.S. forces have remained there, the stronger al-Qaeda has become. Yet its strength within the Kurdish and Shiite areas is trivial. After a U.S. withdrawal, it will probably play a continuing role in helping the Sunni groups against the Shiites and the Kurds. Whether such foreign elements could remain or thrive in Iraq after the resolution of civil war is open to question. Meanwhile, continuing the war will not push al-Qaeda outside Iraq. On the contrary, the American presence is the glue that holds al-Qaeda there now.

4) We must continue to fight in order to "support the troops."

This argument effectively paralyzes almost all members of Congress. Lawmakers proclaim in grave tones a litany of problems in Iraq sufficient to justify a rapid pullout. Then they reject that logical conclusion, insisting we cannot do so because we must support the troops. Has anybody asked the troops?
During their first tours, most may well have favored "staying the course" -- whatever that meant to them -- but now in their second, third and fourth tours, many are changing their minds. We see evidence of that in the many news stories about unhappy troops being sent back to Iraq. Veterans groups are beginning to make public the case for bringing them home. Soldiers and officers in Iraq are speaking out critically to reporters on the ground.
But the strangest aspect of this rationale for continuing the war is the implication that the troops are somehow responsible for deciding to continue the president's course. That political and moral responsibility belongs to the president, not the troops. Did not President Harry S. Truman make it clear that "the buck stops" in the Oval Office? If the president keeps dodging it, where does it stop? With Congress?

Embracing the four myths gives Congress excuses not to exercise its power of the purse to end the war and open the way for a strategy that might actually bear fruit.
The first and most critical step is to recognize that fighting on now simply prolongs our losses and blocks the way to a new strategy. Getting out of Iraq is the pre-condition for creating new strategic options. Withdrawal will take away the conditions that allow our enemies in the region to enjoy our pain. It will awaken those European states reluctant to collaborate with us in Iraq and the region.
Second, we must recognize that the United States alone cannot stabilize the Middle East.
Third, we must acknowledge that most of our policies are actually destabilizing the region. Spreading democracy, using sticks to try to prevent nuclear proliferation, threatening "regime change," using the hysterical rhetoric of the "global war on terrorism" -- all undermine the stability we so desperately need in the Middle East.
Fourth, we must redefine our purpose. It must be a stable region, not primarily a democratic Iraq. We must redirect our military operations so they enhance rather than undermine stability. We can write off the war as a "tactical draw" and make "regional stability" our measure of "victory." That single step would dramatically realign the opposing forces in the region, where most states want stability. Even many in the angry mobs of young Arabs shouting profanities against the United States want predictable order, albeit on better social and economic terms than they now have.

Realigning our diplomacy and military capabilities to achieve order will hugely reduce the numbers of our enemies and gain us new and important allies. This cannot happen, however, until our forces are moving out of Iraq. Why should Iran negotiate to relieve our pain as long as we are increasing its influence in Iraq and beyond? Withdrawal will awaken most leaders in the region to their own need for U.S.-led diplomacy to stabilize their neighborhood.
If Bush truly wanted to rescue something of his historical legacy, he would seize the initiative to implement this kind of strategy. He would eventually be held up as a leader capable of reversing direction by turning an imminent, tragic defeat into strategic recovery.
If he stays on his present course, he will leave Congress the opportunity to earn the credit for such a turnaround. It is already too late to wait for some presidential candidate for 2008 to retrieve the situation. If Congress cannot act, it, too, will live in infamy.

William E. Odom, a retired Army lieutenant general, was head of Army intelligence and director of the National Security Agency under Ronald Reagan. He served on the National Security Council staff under Jimmy Carter. A West Point graduate with a PhD from Columbia, Odom teaches at Yale and is a fellow of the Hudson Institute.

Dixie Chicks sweep Grammies!

Wow. You know it’s going to be a bad next few years for conservatives.
The Dixie Chicks swept the Grammies last night taking all five of the awards they were nominated for including best album and best record of the year.
No. 1 Chicks fan Atrios has the video link here.
It is very likely that we will soon see Al Gore win an Oscar for his remarkable film An Inconvenient Truth.
And all of this just a couple of months after Republicans got spanked in the 2006 mid-terms losing control of both the House and Senate. Bush’s popularity is at an all-time low, the war in Iraq is the quagmire that every level-headed American said it would be, the deficit is out of control due to Bush’s fiscally irresponsible tax cuts for the rich (just as every level-headed American predicted it would be). And on and on.
Who would have thought that just a few years after the Dixie Chicks got trashed for mouthing off about Bush, that they would be back on top of the world and Bush would be in the doghouse.