Sunday Open Thread |Remembering Those Lost in 2016: Glenn Frey

In the middle of this week, we got the word that Glenn Frey, too, had passed away.

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It’s been a rough January.

Glenn Frey and That Peaceful, Queasy Feeling
JANUARY 19, 2016

If you’re American and have been near an FM radio in the past few decades, you likely have strong feelings—love, affection, or the opposite—about the Eagles, whose founding member Glenn Frey died yesterday, at age sixty-seven, in New York. Frey and Don Henley wrote snootfuls of harmony-rich sunny-California easy-vibe megahits in the seventies, selling more than a hundred and fifty million Eagles records; after they broke up, in 1980, the songs just stuck around. Turn on a classic-rock station, and somebody’s bound to be taking it to the limit or standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona. They were everywhere, like Budweiser or Heinz ketchup, agreeable to everybody except to those who scoffed at them. On “60 Minutes” a few years ago, Don Henley, when asked to explain the band’s enduring popularity, answered, “ ‘Take It Easy,’ ‘Witchy Woman,’ ‘Peaceful Easy Feeling,’ ‘Desperado,’ ‘Tequila Sunrise,’ ‘Already Gone,’ ‘Best of My Love,’ ‘One of These Nights,’ ‘Lyin’ Eyes,’ ‘Take It to the Limit,’ ‘Hotel California,’ ‘Life in the Fast Lane,’ ‘New Kid in Town,’ ‘I Can’t Tell You Why,’ ‘The Long Run,’ ‘Heartache Tonight.’ ” Yes, we know. These songs have simply been around us, like the air we breathe, in our cars, in our grocery stores, at our sporting events, in our uncles’ tape collections, in the pages of Rolling Stone, in our rock-block weekends, forever.

There are times when you can’t escape them—particularly “Hotel California.” If you dislike “Hotel California,” that feeling, that panicky urge during its first, ominous notes to prevent it from doing its full ridiculous thing—warm smell of colitas, mirrors on the ceiling, pink champagne on ice—can produce an intense physical reaction. One night, years ago, around 4 A.M., my friend Andrew was asleep in bed, and his neighbors across the air shaft, bartenders who came home late ready to party, started to blast “Hotel California” about five feet from his head. He awoke to those first notes, tentative and foreboding, and the next thing he knew that dark desert highway was coming into his bedroom. Enraged, he opened his screen and, Plastic Man-like, extended his torso into and across the air shaft, positioning his face in front of his neighbors’ screen. “Shut up! Shut up! Shut the fuck up!” he yelled. (This is not like him.)

“Is that a face?” he heard someone say. They turned it the fuck off. He retracted himself and closed the window.

Not long after he told me this, I was driving through Holyoke, Massachusetts, in the fog, and I made a wrong turn. The moment I realized I was lost—fog floating mysteriously around the road and trees—“Hotel California” came on my car radio. I laughed, enjoying the absurdity of it through the interminable guitar intro. As I got my bearings, some fog drifted a little, revealing a sign for the I-91 on-ramp, and the drums kicked in. “On a dark desert highway!” Don Henley sang. I laughed again. It’s likely that you, and many people you know, have also had a ridiculous experience with “Hotel California,” which heightens things you don’t want heightened, showing up with its bloated sense of itself at inopportune moments, demanding that you reckon with it, à la “Stairway to Heaven” or “Bohemian Rhapsody,” but irking you with its portentousness at the same time. This is simply part of living in the United States.

Glenn Frey, primarily, wrote those creepy “Hotel California” lyrics; he was also the band’s charged-up taskmaster, co-writing the songs, pushing his band toward perfection and commercial success and ever more golden harmonies. If you’re not a fan, that “Hotel California” feeling, that jumpy angst its opening notes provides, signalling the operatic kitsch to come, can come to represent your entire feeling about the Eagles. But most of their songs are perfectly fine. They have beautiful harmonies, pleasant melodies, and anodyne lyrics. They sing of highways, taking it easy, taking it to the limit, feeling easy, crazy hazy nights, life in the fast lane, and women—lovers or friends, witchy or with lyin’ eyes. To my ears, the Eagles’ music, with its too-canny approach to mellowing out and vaguely sleazeoid approach to women, feels disingenuous and wrong, like all things Jimmy Buffett. (I believe that those parrotheads are having a good time in Margaritaville, but it’s not my kind of good time.) Yet within that skepticism, I accept and appreciate the Eagles’ place in our world; they are part of our shared experience, whether we owned their albums or not.

Read the rest of the tribute at the link above.


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By Frey’s own admission – this is his favorite song

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63 Responses to Sunday Open Thread |Remembering Those Lost in 2016: Glenn Frey

  1. Snoop was asked to #apologize about his comments on the #oscars #lol [explicit language]

    [facebook url="" /]

  2. eliihass says:

    Sorry I missed much of the day’s action fam, but it was one of those days where duty called and I had to give my incredibly pouty, spoilt guy all of my attention..

    I promise to make up for it – and to follow up on my hastily posted comments from yesterday that ended up missing punchlines of my rather long and incomplete arguments .. My frustrated mind was zipping faster than I typed..and I ended up omitting the key points I was trying to make about double standards and all..

    Anyhow, I just stopped by to say hello and stay warm fam – and to share this spot-on review that uncannily mirrored my thoughts and take-away once I saw stills and brief preview of the movie about the Obamas – SouthSide with you..

    In reading about it, I see that the actress Tika Sumpter produced and helped get the movie made and wanted to play young FLOTUS’. But I think she wasn’t quite right casting. Another actress with more depth – even an unknown – would have done a much better job. Unfortunately, the valley girl sound isn’t FLOTUS and sounds flimsy, and the overacting from the brief clip I saw, comes across contrived – and nothing like the serious, no-nonsense, whip-smart, unpretentious, focused and grounded young lady who was recruited straight out Law school by the prestigious Law firm in her hometown, and who moved back home to help pay the bills and help her mother care for her ailing and physically impaired father who would be dead in 2 years… An only daughter who loved and idolized her father, who was completely spoilt and babied by him in return…

    Parker Sawyers on the other hand, is mostly unknown actor…I’ve been impressed with what he’s done in bit parts in other movies I’ve seen him in…He’s deliberate.. a studied actor with pretty good acting instincts..

    I’ll still see the movie whenever it’s released just because…but this review so aptly captured my initial impression of it…

    “…Tanne had the good smarts to cast newcomer Parker Sawyers to play young Barack, a difficult job that Sawyers proves wholly adept at handling. He doesn’t do an impersonation, but he does nail certain familiar cadences, especially in a centerpiece speech at a community meeting, when Michelle first gets a glimpse of Barack’s preternatural rhetorical abilities. Sawyers knows when to play cocky, when to be a little goofy, and, most crucially, when to turn on the sex appeal. It’s easy to understand why Michelle, who is initially resistant to the idea that this is a date, is ultimately powerless to resist.

    But we already knew about Barack Obama’s uncanny charisma. What Southside With You’s premise more tantalizingly offers is a chance to get to know Michelle, to see her intellect and ambition before her identity is forever tethered to Barack’s. It’s unfortunate, then, that Tanne has written her so stiltedly, a problem that carries over into Tika Sumpter’s performance, which finds some piquant moments but hits too many awkward notes to hold its own against Sawyers’s fluid ease. We don’t really learn much about Michelle Robinson; ultimately she exists in the film as simply yet another person captivated by Barack Obama’s famous magnetism….”

  3. Ametia says:

    RACISTS football FANS heads are exploding

    GO CAM & PANTHERS!Quarterback Cam Newton led the Carolina Panthers to a win of 49-15 over the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Championship Game.

  4. Ametia says:

    RACISTS football FANS heads are exploding


  5. Ametia says:

    Hasselback & Cardinals are NO MATCH for the Panthers

  6. Liza says:

    Bernie Sanders and the Liberal Imagination

    Last week I critiqued Bernie Sanders for dismissing reparations specifically, and for offering up a series of moderate anti-racist solutions, in general. Some felt it was unfair to single out Sanders given that, on reparations, Sanders’s chief opponent Hillary Clinton holds the same position.

    Here is the great challenge of liberal policy in America: We now know that for every dollar of wealth white families have, black families have a nickel. We know that being middle class does not immunize black families from exploitation in the way that it immunizes white families. We know that black families making $100,000 a year tend to live in the same kind of neighborhoods as white families making $30,000 a year. We know that in a city like Chicago, the wealthiest black neighborhood has an incarceration rate many times worse than the poorest white neighborhood. This is not a class divide, but a racist divide. Mainstream liberal policy proposes to address this divide without actually targeting it, to solve a problem through category error. That a mainstream Democrat like Hillary Clinton embraces mainstream liberal policy is unsurprising. Clinton has no interest in expanding the Overton window. She simply hopes to slide through it.

    But I thought #FeelTheBern meant something more than this. I thought that Bernie Sanders, the candidate of single-payer health insurance, of the dissolution of big banks, of free higher education, was interested both in being elected and in advancing the debate beyond his own candidacy. I thought the importance of Sanders’s call for free tuition at public universities lay not just in telling citizens that which is actually workable, but in showing them that which we must struggle to make workable. I thought Sanders’s campaign might remind Americans that what is imminently doable and what is morally correct are not always the same things, and while actualizing the former we can’t lose sight of the latter.

    A Democratic candidate who offers class-based remedies to address racist plunder because that is what is imminently doable, because all we have are bandages, is doing the best he can. A Democratic candidate who claims that such remedies are sufficient, who makes a virtue of bandaging, has forgotten the world that should, and must, be. Effectively he answers the trenchant problem of white supremacy by claiming “something something socialism, and then a miracle occurs.”

    … “Hillary Clinton is against reparations, too” does not differ from, “What about black on black crime?” That Clinton doesn’t support reparations is an actual problem, much like high murder rates in black communities are actual problems. But neither of these are actual answers to the questions being asked. It is not wrong to ask about high murder rates in black communities. But when the question is furnished as an answer for police violence, it is evasion. It is not wrong to ask why mainstream Democrats don’t support reparations. But when the question is asked to defend a radical Democrat’s lack of support, it is avoidance.

    The need for so many (although not all) of Sanders’s supporters to deflect the question, to speak of Hillary Clinton instead of directly assessing whether Sanders’s position is consistent, intelligent, and moral hints at something terrible and unsaid. The terribleness is this: To destroy white supremacy we must commit ourselves to the promotion of unpopular policy. To commit ourselves solely to the promotion of popular policy means making peace with white supremacy.

    If we can be inspired to directly address class in such radical ways, why should we allow our imaginative powers end there?

    But hope still lies in the imagined thing. Liberals have dared to believe in the seemingly impossible—a socialist presiding over the most capitalist nation to ever exist. If the liberal imagination is so grand as to assert this new American reality, why when confronting racism, presumably a mere adjunct of class, should it suddenly come up shaky? Is shy incrementalism really the lesson of this fortuitous outburst of Vermont radicalism? Or is it that constraining the political imagination, too, constrains the possible? If we can be inspired to directly address class in such radical ways, why should we allow our imaginative powers end there?

    These and other questions were recently put to Sanders. His answer was underwhelming. It does not have to be this way. One could imagine a candidate asserting the worth of reparations, the worth of John Conyers HR-40, while also correctly noting the present lack of working coalition. What should be unimaginable is defaulting to the standard of Clintonism, of “Yes, but she’s against it, too.” A left radicalism that fails to debate its own standards, that counsels misdirection, that preaches avoidance, is really just a radicalism of convenience.

    • Liza says:

      I don’t know, but I think TNC has got his head in the clouds on this one. We’re talking about the Democratic nominee, the upcoming Democratic primaries. An informed person who consistently votes, who thinks that voting is important, will scrutinize the candidates in the same lab and under the same microscope. If what Bernie said about reparations is disturbing, not what you want to hear, then you will look at what the other candidate(s) have said on the same subject. That is the way people who actually think about these things decide who to vote for. They vote for the candidate who is most in alignment with their own values and beliefs. There can be other factors, of course, such as electability considerations, single overriding issues (such as war), and so on. And for that matter, “most in alignment” may not even be close. We have very limited choices.

      I just don’t see the “what about black on black crime” comparison here. That is an evasive response given by people who do not care about black victims of crime to begin with. It is meaningless.

    • Ametia says:

      When TNC starts critiquing CLINTON & O’MALLEY,….

      Just saying

      • Liza says:

        Well, that’s it. I don’t know if anyone has asked O’Malley, but I daresay that none of the candidates support reparations. I would be very surprised if any of them have given much thought to the subject. Being disappointed in one candidate that you had higher hopes for should not make one of the others your default choice, and I realize that isn’t really what TNC is saying. But he should know that intelligent voters ask the same questions of all the candidates. Otherwise, we would be low information voters who decide at the last minute and base that decision on some unverified bullsh!t we just heard.

  7. Ametia says:

    HA HA HA Tom Brady’s face is about as DEFLATED as those FOOTBALLS he used to have DEFLATED


  8. Not today, Tom Brady

  9. Ametia says:

    Come with it, CAROLINA PANTHERS. Let’s win the NFC championship and take a switch to the Bronchos

  10. Ametia says:

    I’m NOT a fan of Tom Brady or Peyton Manning.

    But I don’t want TOM BRADY in another Superbowl

  11. rikyrah says:

    it would be safer to slide on a lunchroom tray down those stairs.

  12. rikyrah says:

    uh uh uh
    uh uh uh

    How it feels to be a poor mother living without heat during a blizzard

    By Terrence McCoy January 23 at 6:54 PM

    At the end of a row of abandoned homes in one of Washington’s poorest neighborhoods, it’s 7:30 a.m., and Chamika McLaughlin climbs out of bed. She dreads this time of day. It’s when she has to make a choice between two terrible options.

    Does she stay cold? Or does she put her life at risk?

    McLaughlin pulls on a blue hat, wraps a black sweater around her slight frame and pads into the kitchen. Hands tucked in her armpits, she shivers in the early-morning chill. School is canceled today, and her 12-year-old son, sleeping in one of the apartment’s two bedrooms, will soon awake. She has to get the house warmer. So, as she’s done countless times over two heatless winters in this apartment, she reaches for the oven dial.

    McLaughlin, 30, knows heating her home this way could start a fire — oven blazes kill people every year. But she feels she didn’t have a choice. She’s marooned with defective radiators in one of the worst blizzards to hit the District in years. McLaughlin turns the oven to 400 degrees, pulls down its door and watches the coils inside glow red.

    “I just open it up and let it heat up the living room,” says McLaughlin, who’s bought space heaters for the bedrooms.

  13. Liza says:

  14. Liza says:

    I’ve got to say, that scene from “Thelma and Louise” where Susan Sarandon shoots the would be rapist is one of my favorites. Of course you think,”Just walk away, he’s a POS” but there is that rush of satisfaction when she puts him out of his misery. Great cinema but not good for real life.

  15. Check your email ladies

    • rikyrah says:

      The excerpt they posted at BJ:

      On the night of November 2nd, well-dressed Wichita residents formed a line that snaked through the lobby of the city’s convention center. They all held tickets to the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce’s annual gala, which had drawn thirty-five hundred people. The evening’s featured speaker, Charles Koch, had lived in town almost all of his eighty years, but few locals—even prominent ones—had ever laid eyes on him. Charles, along with his brother David, owns virtually all of the energy-and-chemical conglomerate Koch Industries, which is based in Wichita and has annual revenues of a hundred and fifteen billion dollars. Charles’s secretive manner, right-wing views, and concerted campaign to exert political influence by spending his fortune have made him an object of fascination, especially in his home town. “You never see him,” one local newsman whispered. “He hates publicity.” He paused. “Please don’t quote me on that!”…

      Charles shared the stage with Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, the co-hosts of the MSNBC cable show “Morning Joe,” whom Koch Industries had chosen to serve as moderators. The audience laughed as Koch recalled such boyhood misadventures as his expulsion from military school. He amiably described early business mistakes, and he pointedly criticized Republicans as well as Democrats…

      Starting in 2010, a controversial series of rulings by the federal judiciary and the Supreme Court essentially licensed unlimited political spending by corporations, unions, and individuals. Charles and David—a seventy-five-year-old patron of the arts, who is the wealthiest resident of Manhattan—were unusually prepared to take advantage of this shift. They had set up a broad alliance of donors and advocacy organizations to support conservative candidates who share their “pro-business” opposition to regulation, entitlements, and taxes. This network has since become one of the most powerful political forces in the country: a libertarian advocacy group backed by the brothers, Americans for Prosperity, has directors in thirty-four states. According to Politico, twelve hundred people work full-time for the Koch network—more than three times the number of people who work for the Republican National Committee.

      A new, data-filled study by the Harvard scholars Theda Skocpol and Alexander Hertel-Fernandez reports that the Kochs have established centralized command of a “nationally-federated, full-service, ideologically focused” machine that “operates on the scale of a national U.S. political party.” The Koch network, they conclude, acts like a “force field,” pulling Republican candidates and office-holders further to the right. Last week, the Times reported that funds from the Koch network are fuelling both ongoing rebellions against government control of Western land and the legal challenge to labor unions that is before the Supreme Court…

      The Kochs’ strategy began to change after the last Presidential election. Having spent so much money trying to defeat Obama, they were stunned when he was reëlected. As late as Election Day, their political advisers were assuring them that Mitt Romney had secured the Presidency. The 2012 defeat led the Kochs and their advisers into an intense period of review. Most of the postmortem took place in private, but in March, 2013, a clue to the Kochs’ line of thinking was offered by Arthur Brooks, the president of the American Enterprise Institute. In a speech at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, Brooks, who frequently attends the Kochs’ political retreats, offered a diagnosis of what had gone wrong in 2012.

      Brooks told the audience that a single statistic explained why conservatives had lost. In polls, he said, only a third of respondents agreed that Republicans “cared about people like” them. And fewer than half of Americans believed that Republicans cared about the poor. Conservatives had an empathy problem. This was important, Brooks explained, because Americans almost universally believed that “fairness matters.” He went on, “I know it makes you sick to think of that word, ‘fairness.’ ” But Americans, he said, overwhelmingly believed that “it’s right to help the vulnerable.”…

      Conservatives didn’t have a policy problem, Brooks assured the audience: free-market economics still offered the best solutions for America. Republicans just needed different packaging for their message. “In other words, if you want to be seen as a moral, compassionate person, talk about fairness and helping the vulnerable,” Brooks said. “You want to win? Start fighting for people! . . . Lead with vulnerable people. Lead with fairness!” He added, “Telling stories matters. By telling stories, we can soften people.”…

      The planning for the Kochs’ political makeover took place in private, but in June, 2014, a leak from one of their twice-yearly donor summits provided a glimpse of their thinking. Lauren Windsor, a liberal blogger who hosts an online news program called “The Undercurrent,” obtained audio recordings of the secret gathering, which was held at a resort near Laguna Beach, California. Soon afterward, she began posting them.

      In one session, entitled “The Long-Term Strategy: Engaging the Middle Third,” Richard Fink, who was introduced to the donors as the Kochs’ ”grand strategist,” offered a summary of the new plan. Fink, who has a Ph.D. in economics from New York University, has been the Kochs’ closest political adviser since the eighties. He was an executive vice-president and a director on the board of Koch Industries, and also a board member of Americans for Prosperity. After the losses of 2012, Fink explained, he had surveyed twenty years of research into the political opinions of moderates, including a hundred and seventy thousand surveys conducted in the United States and abroad. His conclusion, he told the donors, was that if conservatives wanted to win over Americans they needed to change their pitch.

      In a ballroom overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Fink began, “We got our clocks cleaned in 2012.” The demographic challenge, he said, was formidable. The United States was essentially divided into three parts. The Kochs, he said, had already “been very successful in mobilizing” the first third, which comprised conservatives and libertarians who shared their political vision. Another third, he said, would never support them: these were “the collectivists.” (In the nineteen-fifties and sixties, the John Birch Society used this term to conflate liberals and Communists.) Fink continued, “The battle for the future of the country is who can win the hearts and minds of that middle third. . . . Whoever can mobilize a majority of that thirty per cent will determine the direction of the country.”…

      Fink, thinking that he was only among friends, confided that the critics weren’t entirely wrong. “What do people like you say? I grew up with pretty much very little, O.K.? And I worked my butt off to get what I have.” When he saw impoverished people “on the street,” he admitted, his gut reaction was: “Get off your ass and work hard, like we did!”

      Unfortunately, he continued, voters in the middle third had a different reaction when they saw the poor. They felt “guilty about it.” Rather than just being concerned with expanding “opportunity” for themselves, he said, this group was also concerned with expanding “opportunity for other people.” For these voters, the government-slashing agenda of the Kochs was a stumbling block. Fink acknowledged, “We want to decrease regulations. Why? It’s because we can make more profit, O.K.? Yeah, and cut government spending so we don’t have to pay so much taxes. There’s truth in that.” But to the “middle third” these positions seemed motivated not by ideological principle but by greed.,,

      But Fink had a solution. “This is going to sound a little strange,” he acknowledged. “So you’ll have to bear with me.” The Koch network, he said, needed to present its free-market ideology as an apolitical and altruistic reform movement to enhance the quality of life—as “a movement for well-being.” The network should make the case that free markets forged a path to happiness, whereas big government led to tyranny, Fascism, and even Nazism. Arguing that an increase in the minimum wage would cause higher unemployment, Fink told his audience that unemployment in Germany during the nineteen-twenties had led to the rise “of the Third Reich.”…

  16. Ametia says:

    The HEAT IS ON!

    And memo to Hillary Clinton:


  17. Ametia says:

    One of These Nights! Glen Frey’s favorite Eagles song; is my favorite too.

    Rik, I love that you got right on these tributes early. Waiting until the end of the year, just wouldn’t have had the same touch for me. THNAK YOU!

  18. I cannot say #BlackLivesMatter and then vote for someone who lobbied for a failed policy which led to the destruction of black families. I can’t do THAT!

  19. rikyrah says:

    I hope that everyone in the path of this storm is Ok. Respect the elements.

  20. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Everyone

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