Bring it on Illuminate

I have been remiss in not mentioning a stirring documentary I had the pleasure to stumble upon several weeks ago. Any one who happens to read this site probably has already heard of it: 'Loose Change'. For those who haven't heard of it 'Loose Change' is about 9/11 and the evidence that fuels the conspiracy theories alledging that the U.S. government was behind the attacks. But it doesn't come off like the deranged ramblings of some fringe lunatic, there was obviously great effort taken in researching their allegations and you can tell it was put together very thoughtfully. I came across it while looking for info on another documentary type movie that I happened to see that talked about how the government was behind 9/11 in the context of how it related to the coming of The New World Order.

I know deep right? And in this film they were breaking it all the way down from how 1/3 of the world's population already has microchips implanted in their being to how the groups behind all of this are right in front of our faces. Truly rogue mentality. Unfortunately I didn't catch the name or who made it because I stumbled in after the beginning and immediately after it concluded a debate ensued amongst the watchers about the topics brought up. And plus I had been on the way somewhere else and stopped to watch it because it was that attention grabbing, so I couldn't stay. But I will find out the name of that documentary and where to get it. The narrartor sounded a lot like the guy in 'Loose Change' so I was hoping it was by the same people but I haven't been able to find it again yet. But I'll keep you posted. Oh and if anyone knows the film I'm talking about hook me up.

Soul Shout Out

I must make a post as an appendix to my post the other day on my list of the best m.c.s of all time in honor of the widely reported death of real hip-hop. Gotta include a list of honorable mention emcees who coulda made the list but in my mind, for one reason or another, could not pass the ones I put in the top ten:

Pharohe Monche, Q-Tip, Too Short (longevity + he knows what he's good at and sticks too it), Ras Kass (incomplete body of work), MC Ren (real backbone of NWA), Scarface, G.U.R.U, Ghostface Killa, Grand Puba, Slick Rick (master storyteller), AG, Kool Keith, Lord Finesse, OC, Chuck D, Snoop I considered because no one else could get away with remaking 'La Di Da Di' (and get the personal blessing of Slick Rick), Bizmarkie (took beat boxing to another level). That's all off the top of my head, tell me who I left off.


The Wolf is a Brewer's fan

In 1982 I was a hardcore Milwaukee Brewers fan. There was really no other choice, I grew up in Milwaukee. Sure there may have been other teams that attracted my attention but when it came down to anyone else and my Brewers, the other guys had to go. So in 1982 I, along with my best friend and lots of other kids, collected the Brewers baseball cards that our local police department gave away for free. I watched mesmerized but not really grasping the history that was unfolding in front of my eyes as the Brewers win their division by 1 game and then proceed to beat the Angels (who had Reggie Jackson that year) in 5 games in the ALCS (there was no wild card round back then). I sat in front of my parents tv with a pencil and a notebook, rather than go outside to do 10-year old stuff, and drew up a makeshift scoreboard to keep track of every strike, ball, and out of the 1982 World Series between the Brewers and the Cards. I remember names like Teddy Higuera, Rollie Fingers, Paul Molitor, Robin Yount, Cecil Cooper, Ben Ogilvie, Jim Ganter, Gorman Thomas, Don Sutton, Ned Yost, Pete Vukovich. I was heartbroken when they fell just short against a great Cardinals team.

When they talk about teams with long suffering sports fans, the Milwaukee Brewers are rarely mentioned. I don't think there's any particular reason why not, 1982 was the only Series they've ever been to (the Braves won a pennant in Milwaukee in 1957 but that doesn't really count for Brewers fans). But people tend to forget old Milwaukee, we're just a strange little hick white town in Wisconsin (wherever that is) people figure, and other teams stories are supposedly more compelling I guess (I do wish the Cubs would win already, but do enjoy watching their fans in anguish because they are very often Bears fans also). But believe me we have suffered just as much, the Brewers haven't had a winning record in over 15 years (maybe this year?!) and we weren't exactly tradition-building before '82. This all leads me to why I'm not going to be all quick to jump on the Brewer bandwagon this year, though I feel I must say something about them because this is a sports blog among other things and I am a hardcore sports fan from Milwaukee so it's kind of mandatory. We (Brewer's fans) know the chant of 'there's always next year', we've been saying it for a while now and it looks like this might actually be the year for something to happen, what I don't know (playoffs maybe?). But something in the back of my mind has me feeling like the Wolf in 'Pulp Fiction' right now, "let's not start sucking our own dicks just yet". Yes we're leading our division but by less than 2 games and we have the second worst record of any division leader, on the other hand from looking at the standings (I'm a very casual baseball fan) there's no team that's really tearing it up this year and hey it's after the All Star break and the Brewers are still worth mentioning. That in itself is a big turnaround from past years. We are a team that other teams must deal with if they want to be on top. The talk is not just limited to whether we are finally going to trade Geoff Jenkins and what we need to do to get better. And did I actually see them make a trade last week as if they are trying to gear up for a playoff run? Awesome. Call me in September if they are still relevant, in the meantime they still got brains to pick up. Until then I will go to the occasional game with no winnng expectations as all casual but loyal Brewer's fans have been doing for longer than we care to remember. But I'll keep my fingers crossed. Until then it might be a jinx to root harder.


Finally someone we can trust: Supernegro!

What's up y'all I know from the post dates it looks like I haven't been on my game like I should, but I assure you there will be a deluge of posts this weekend (I have young children, parents should understand I been busy). But while performing my due diligence in researching post topics I ran across this site that I think the RogueHour will be linking to regulary. In fact I'm adding it to the list of some of my favorite links on the right side of this blog. Revolutionaries, check it out.


R.I.P. Hip-Hop 1979 - ?

Nas is right. Hip-Hop is dead. The finality of it hits me everytime I hear the latest new "hit" and it's another snap-your-fingers-do-that-dance song. Gone are the days of the real M.C. (master of ceromonies for the unenlightened). Now it's all about how many spins you get on the radio and how many times BET shows your video within an hour. From rockin' the party to wiping ourselves down . . . that's how far it has come.

My generation is a unique and pivotal one in history in many ways: first ones born in the post- civil rights era ('70's), first to really feel the effects of Reaganomics and crack, and also priviliged to have witnessed the birth of this genre and how it has threaded itself into the fabric of American culture (remember KFC was one of the first to use rap music in their commercials?).

Yep, we watched as corporate America realized that this wasn't just a fad (and that there was a lot of money to be made from the exploitation of it). Watched as they became the controllers of what was hot. You used to be the man if you had a tape to sell out of your trunk, now if you don't have a video out or a segment on MTV Cribs you're a nobody.

I remember I saw a Judge Mathis episode (whose show I hate by the way) where the defendant was an aspiring rapper and and to prove the legitimacy of his claim that he had talent, he spit some of his lyrics on the spot. Now he was no KRS but he was saying a little something, but the judge basically ridiculed him saying that because he had never heard of him and he refused to follow along with the popular stereotypes pushed by the mainstream he would never be a "success" (i.e. make a lot of money) as a rapper. Dude even said he was more into it for the love of the flow rather than monetary acheivment but the judge just pooh-poohed that. And I just mention that to give an example of how this thinking has penetrated the minds of most people who only have a casual knowledge of rap music. Imagine what African Americans who don't even listen to rap must think of it. I get so tired of trying to explain to people in my own age group that all rap music is not like "Laffy Taffy", listen to some Talib, or Common, or the Roots.

But it's only to be expected. In my observation whichever way our people have gone, so has our music. Brothers was gonna work it out in the '80's, now we just trying to party like rock stars. Seems like black america is wildin' out even more than ever but not in a good way anymore. We used to wild out to stick up for our rights, now it's just to tear the club up or show you got the biggest rims, the fattest knot, the most ice. . .but this is best discussed in depth in another post. This post is about something often debated among hip-hop fans: The best M.C.s in history.

Yes I'm talking about spanning the whole history of hip-hop, which is a perfect task for someone in my age bracket because as I've said we witnessed it from the birth to now. Really something like this is seriously needed because hip-hop is not maximized as an art form. In other musical genres the pioneers are revered figures by fans (i.e. The Rolling Stones, Grateful Dead, Frank Sinatra, even Miles Davis and Coltrane), but not hip-hop. Young niggas laugh when you bring up KRS-One or Rakim in a discussion of the greatest m.c.'s of all time and are more likely to nominate Young Jeezy or Lil' Wayne (they're nice, but no comparison). We should be listening to Criminal Minded like white people listen to those old Beatles albums.

My criteria is kinda simple: lyrics, longevity (at least 2 good albums), and innovation. I'm trying to mention not only the best lyricists but the artists who changed the game somehow. As Melle Mel said "Hip Hop is about writing and rhyming, it's about standing in front of a mic (or an opponent) and destroying it lyrically". And I won't have any bias towards the younger generation on m.c.'s there are some good ones out there. Like I said one of the things I'm trying to do with this blog is spark debate and there should be plenty about a topic as subjective as this.

So without further adoo, this is my top ten.

10. Eminem - Some people would put him higher, others would not even have him on this list. My reasoning for including him is that white guys do have a place in hip-hop probably starting with the Beastie Boys and Rick Rubin, so I felt I should include their best representative. And he is always saying some shit that makes you rewind to make sure you heard him right.

9. Common (Sense) - has dropped the Sense part nowadays but that's how he started out. Gotta give props to my friends Show and Big Dre' for hipping me to Common back when he dropped 'Resurrection'. That was the album that really put him on the hip hop map (although his first album 'Can I Borrow a Dollar' was tight too) with the song 'I Used to Love H.E.R.' subliminally suggesting that hip-hop was headed down the wrong path of gangsta rap and materialism. So he's been around a long time and is still dropping dopeness (his latest is 'The Game' which I have to bump at least once a day and one with Talib Kweli, I believe they are from his latest album about to come out). Also back in around '98/'99 I went to a free concert outside on the student commons at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN featuring Common and The Roots. There were a lot of things that made that experience super tight: the fact that I was lifted, the fact that the place was not overpacked because it was not really advertised so if you were there it was on the humble, it was the end part of summer great weather, Common and The Roots actually showed up (well except for Black Thought). So they started later than the rumored start time but when they started they rocked it for like two and a half hours straight just Common and the Roots band. Common basically freestyled the whole show with a mix of semi-remixes of old school hits and lines from off the head that included the names of streets and places in Nashville which got the crowd hype. And after it was over I just remember walking away thinking that it was all free, no charge. That's hip-hop.

8. Jay-Z - Sigh . . . to tell you the truth I was really debating about whether he should be on this list ('HOV lovers hear me out!). His success has been mainly due to rap's current obsession with materialism. He was one of the first to really start name dropping designer names and labels in his rhymes and helped make bragging about how much money you have mandatory. Those things made me really dislike him as an artist (and that nickname 'Jigga', one syllable away from jigaboo!). I felt he was way overrated. But I can't front, he may stick to the same subject matter for the most part but he always comes up with new and clever ways to say it. 'Reasonable Doubt' is a classic no question, you can still beat down a block with 'Can't Knock the Hustle'. And he has progressed lyrically thru out his career, always improving. So I think it would be a to0 big off an oversight to leave him off. He represents one of the best of the second era of hip-hop (roughly early '90's to 2000).

7. Nas - sort of a living legend. I've never heard of a debut album being as highly anticipated as 'Illmatic' was (one of the few albums to ever get 5 mics from The Source). For years before it came out you would hear rumors on the underground rap scene of this kid named Nasty Nas ripping the mic. 'Illmatic' came out in the spring of '96 just in time for one of the last/best years of the infamous Freaknic in ATL. When I got down there I was amazed at the number of people from all around the country bumping Nas. He single-handedly shifted rap's focus back on lyricsm after it had been binging on uncreative gangsta rap. I believe his first appearance on wax was 'Live at the Barbecue' the last cut on 3rd Bass's often overlooked second album. Large Professor and Akinelye were both on this cut and were big at the time but Nas stole the show: "street's disciple my raps are trifle/I shoot slugs from my brain just like a rifle/stampede the stage, I leave the microphone ripped/play Mr. Toughy while I'm on some Pretty Tony shit/verbal assassin my architecht pleases/when I was twelve I went to hell for snuffin' Jesus". Are you telling me these Young Joc Laffy Taffy niggas are coming close to that???!!! Please.

6. Tupac/Biggie - these two will always be linked together not just in the history of rap music but in American culture so it only makes sense to put them together on this list. Two guys who started off as buddies but ended up enemies and in the middle became two of the most prolific artists in the history of any musical genre. If you mention one you have to mention the other and it's useless trying to decide which one was better. Each had the innate ability to make you feel what they were feeling not only with what they said but how they said it. Hell one could argue the case that if they were still alive hip-hop would be too.

5. Ice Cube - The Product. He's got the longevity and he's a pioneer of (West Coast) gangsta rap, an original member of NWA. Known for spitting such lines as "I was told cuz I didn't witness the whole act/in 'n' out was the movement of the bozack/it was hot and sweating and lots of pushin/then the nut came gushin'/and it was hell tryin to bell to the ovary/with nothin but the Lord lookin' over me/I was white with a tail/but when I crossed the finish line: young black male!"

4. LL Cool J - even though his is annoying with the constant licking of the lips and the obsession with his body, I can't front on Cool James. When it comes to longevity he is pretty much the standard. He's had umpteen albums and always at least one hit from each one (I think the last was 'Headsprung'?), and countless classics. The inventor of the rap love ballad. Took out KoolMoDee with 'Jack the Ripper' (although MoDee's answer song was tight, but not tight enough). One of the first rappers to transcend the genre and go into movies and tv. Gave Foxy Brown her first big shot on wax.

3. Kool G Rap - the real originator of gangster rap music, besides maybe Schoolly D and Too Short on the West Coast. G Rap was spitting rough rhymes way before NWA or the Geto Boys made it extra popular. Still he is mostly only known to true heads. Was on classic tracks like 'The Symphony' ,'Ill Street Blues', and 'Talk Like Sex'. If you can ever find his best hits CD released by now defunct Cold Chillin' Records cop it immediately because it's a rare find. A sample 'you know the evil that men do, so show him how the game go/we snatched him by his hands and feet and threw him out the window/up, up, up and away cuz I don't play clown/buck, buck, buck take that with you on the way down/I'm hoping you got wings or springs on your shoes/but you lose becuz I got the Ill Street Blues.

2. Big Daddy Kane - long live the Kane. I don't see how you could avoid mentioning him in this discussion. I mean 'Raw', 'Ain't no Halfsteppin'', 'Set It Off', his verse on 'The Symphony', I could go on and on. Sure he hasn't really done anything in the last 10 years but the lyrics on those songs still surpass those currently being passed off by these rappers posing as m.c.s He very much helped make flatop fades cool (up north people called them 'big daddies' as in "man what's up with your big daddy, you need a cut don't you?!"). One interesting antidote is his supposed rivalry with Kool G Rap, fellow member of the Juice Crew. I've heard it said that the last two verses of "The Symphony" was a little personal battle between G Rap and Kane. Opinions differ on which verse was better but I think all agree they both were tight.

1.-Tie Rakim - of course the god m.c. needs to be near the top of this list, but it is too hard for me personally to decide between him and KRS One so I declare a tie. Do I even need to go into an explanation of why he is perhaps the greatest m.c. of all time? Universally respected among all rappers, all pay homage due to Rakim. Examine any line of his lyrics on any song. There are no out of place words, no wasted syllables, no throw away lines. His delivery is pretty much flawless. He's like Jordan on the mic for real.

1.-Tie KRS One - the m.c. who would rather teach than rule. Knowledge Reigns Supreme Over Nearly Everyone. See this is a person who lived a substantial part of his life growing up literally on the streets homeless. He knows reality for real for real. And you cannot call yourself a truly hardcore head if you've never been to or at least heard a KRS concert, he's gives perhaps the best live shows of any rapper ever. So he is the complete emcee, elevating to a higher form metaphysically but still among the masses. He's still hot doing underground shit and he says that every year he writes a seperate battle rap for each of the top ten selling rappers that year, so if the masses ever wake up watch out Jeezy!


Alive and well

"Just another case of the BLACK MAN in sports proving he is not worth anymore now that he is making large amounts of money then he was when living in the "HOOD" selling drugs & stealing anything he could get his hands on. VICK is a prick & always has been & always will be. And Atanta is onlyu worried about the money they will loose or have to pay out. Neither Vick or the Falcons have any morals when it come to money. I hope Vick rots in hell with dogs biting his ass allthe time & takes that no count sorry asss brother of his with him. They are both nothing more then LOSERS. Always have been & always will be. . "

Just wanted to remind anybody who happens to peruse this site that the mind set of racism is alive and well in the U.S. of A. I saw this post on the Fanhouse blog at AOL. Click on the link and check out some of the other posts these rednecks put on there. I'm not so naive as to think that race is no longer a big issue in our culture, but the number of undercover and blatant racists out there just waiting to crucify Vick amazes even me. If a white athelete was accused of this it would never generate the type or amount of negative responses that the Vick case has. And don't get it totally twisted, this isn't just about that he's black (there have been other less famous black atheletes caught up by the law over dogfighting i.e. Nate Newton, LaShon Johnson, Qyntel Woods) it's that he's black, has a lot of money, and little white kids idolize him. The last one is what these crackers really can't stand.


Woulda Coulda

Heard a rumor today about Stephon Marbury that was a little surprising. Apparently Steph is thinking about ending his illustrious playing career in Italy after his contract with the Knicks is up next year. Which got me to thinking about how much Marbury appears to have changed nowadays compared to when he first came into the league. Back then he was mostly seen as a player who was supremely gifted but needed an ego check, now he's kind of seen almost as the prototype NBA player/role model, probably mainly due to his much publicized affordable shoe line for kids. But then that also got me thinking about his lost potential. Starbury was supposed to be the next great point guard (along with J. Kidd) and blow up the leauge with his spectacular play but has never made it beyond the first round of the playoffs. That got me to thinking that there have been a lot of players like that, that came and went in the leauge. Their careers started off on fire but eventually cooled off so much that people forgot about how tight they used to be. So in honor of Steph thinking about playing in Italy here is my list of the top ten Woulda Shoulda Coulda NBA players (in my lifetime) with a brief descrip of what qualifies them:

10. Shawn Kemp - most often remembered for the number of kids he has or for the drug dependancy problems he had towards the end of his career, he used to be the RainMan, the ManChild. There was a time when he was considered the most explosive exciting player in the leauge next to Jordan, known for posterizing opponents in games with the type of dunks usually only seen on the playground. In fact if not for Jordan he probably would've got a ring with that Sonics squad (Perkins, Kemp, Shrempf, Hawkins, Payton, pretty good five). Averaged double figures points and rebounds 6 of 14 seasons, was on the original DreamTeam, automatic perennial All-Star.

9. Jamal Mashburn - is he still a tv studio analyst? I've lost track of Mash since he had to retire after chronic knee problems. But man don't you remember the Monster Mash!? Seriously hyped up coming out of Kentucky he fufilled all expectations in his first few years until the injuries started. It became a given that no matter how big a first half he had, he would be sidelined by the All-Star break. Still averaged 19.1 over 11 seasons.

8. Larry Johnson - Grandmama! The only player who could make a character like that work. You might have laughed at the dress, wig, and glasses but you would still be dunked on mercilessly. After the back injuries though his whole game changed because he just didn't have that lift anymore. He was like Barkley on steroids during the Grandmama days (few remember he was only 6'7" at the most). At least he went out with a bang.

7. Bernard King - How is this guy not in the Hall of Fame? One of the most prolific scorers of the '80's he also had bad luck with injuries, career 22.9 ppg average. On most of the teams he was on he was the only real scoring option routinely double and triple teamed and he still was shitting on n*$$&z. I remember watching tv profiles of him and how when they interviewed opposing coaches they would just shake their heads in amazement of how they could do nothing to stop him. By the end of his career his greatness was pretty much forgotten but this YouTube clip says it all.

6. Roy Tarpley - that's right I'm digging down deep. I remember when Roy first came out of college because that was the year I really started becoming more than a casual fan of the NBA. He was expected to be a solid player but no thought he would dominate the way he started to show he could. With Roy that Dallas team was starting to give the Lakers something to worry about (starting five included Tarpley, Rolando Blackman, Derek Harper, Mark Aguirre man the '80's NBA was good!). But now he's just remembered for being the first player banned from the leauge for substance abuse. View this obscure footage of him in action.

5. Ralph Sampson - I don't think anyone remembers anymore that in the midst of the Lakers and Celtics meeting in the finals like 8 times in the '80's there was one year the Rockets shocked everyone and got to the finals in '85-'86 with the Twin Towers. When Sampson's playing career is mentioned now it is usually in the context of a joke, but check out his stats his first three years in the leauge before the knee problems: '83-'84, 22 ppg 11 rpg; '84-'85 22 and 10; '85-'86 18 and 11 (Olajuwon was there by then). Once again YouTube backs me up. I've never seen Magic and Kareem look so frustrated.

4. Stephon Marbury - Gotta include him because he inspired the post. Career stats are guady 19.9 ppg, 7.9 apg. Remember his freshman year at Georgia Tech? Like I said he was supposed to be the next Magic, Isiah, Big O, etc. but for some reason he never reached that potential. He's not even really mentioned in a discussion of the premier point guards in the leauge anymore and hasn't been since the trade that swapped him and J. Kidd. From that clip to now if that isn't wasted potential I don't know what is.

3. Ron Harper - I'm putting him on the list because I used to be so frustrated that he used to be pretty much viewed as one of the players that just rode Jordan's (and Shaq/Kobe) coattails to get his rings like he was Jud Buechler or Dickie Simpkins. People just forgot how he used to be the man on a great Cavs team (Price, Harper, Daughtery, Nance, Gerald Wilkins) and that when he got traded to the Clips he was commonly known as the 'West Coast Jordan' before a knee injury robbed him of his explosiveness. Need proof?

2. Reggie Lewis - I'll bet no one (besides ESPN's Bill Simmons) really remembers the promise of Reggie Lewis. I'll let this page at answers.com tell the story best:

"At the time of Bird's retirement former Celtics guard Chris Ford was the coach of the Celtics. 26-year old Reggie Lewis (out of Boston's Northeastern University) was seen as Bird's successor as the franchise player for the Celtics. In Bird's final season it was Lewis who led the team in scoring, and he made his first All-Star appearance in the 1992 All-Star game. Lewis, a small forward, fainted during a 1993 first round playoff matchup with the Charlotte Hornets. It was later revealed that Lewis had heart problems, yet he was able to get doctors to clear him for a comeback. He died of a heart attack after participating in a pickup basketball game during the offseason. The Celtics honored his memory during the following season by retiring his number 35." 6 seasons 17.6 ppg average. Almost forgot a clip. (the other guy in this clip could've been on this list too)

1. Grant Hill - Most of the time when Grant's career is talked about people characterize him as a "solid player" like he was just mediocre. I used to hate Grant when he was in college because I hated Duke, but as his fate in the NBA began to unfold I began to identify with him more and more. He lived up to all the hype coming out of college (I wish the Buck had selected him with the first pick that year instead of Glenn Robinson). After his first few years he was regularly referred to as a sure fire future HOF'er. He was supposed to be the cornerstone on which to rebuild the Pistons in the post-Bad Boy era. He was one of the first players to be heralded as the "next Jordan". And to top it off he was a stand-up guy worthy of being idolized by kids (and he somehow managed to land fine ass Tamia). But that nice guy demeanor turned out to be his downfall. '98-'99 before the playoffs Grant runs into a severly sprained ankle. Realizing the Pistons will go nowhere in the playoffs without him(and afraid of being labeled 'soft' by Detroit fans), he gamely continues to play on the sprained ankle until it fractures. After that it's pretty much a wrap as ankle problems have plagued him ever since. He was Rookie of the Year! He used to get more All-Star votes than Jordan! But to this day even Piston's fans downplay how good he was because they are still mad that he went to Orlando as a free agent, even though he literally gave his all for that team. Disgraceful. Let's take one more look at the greatness of Grant Hill.
Update: Quick addition to this list
11. Steve Francis - don't know how I could have missed putting him on this list. I just began to really pay attention to that trade today and I was reading Fox Sport's Charley Rosen's view on it when it struck me that he's really the definition of this list. Rosen points out how when he came into the league he quickly established himself as not only one of the most gifted point guards but one of the best players in the league with his natural abilities. But now at 30, time and injuries have exposed the holes in his game. He's still trying to play defense by jumping the passing lanes but he isn't quick enuff with his reactions anymore. On the offensive end he's still hanging around inside trying to get putbacks (always was a good rebounder for a guard) but his knees won't let him. He also had one of the best nicknames in NBA history "Stevie Franchise"


I Bet 'Ron Mexico' is really the one doing the dogfighting.

Well seems Mike Vick has been indicted after all after all the reports leaked to the media indicating they didn't have enough evidence on Big Mike to pull the trigger. Looks like the feds pulled the old rope-a-dope on him. But, it seems the case against him is far from air tight. Even a cursory glance at the actual indictment reveals that much of the evidence against Vick is composed of testimony from informants who turned state's evidence with no actual smoking gun. Some of the more interesting bits are testimony from a witness who alledgedly was physically confronted by some of Vick's entourage after publicly mentioning Michael Vick's name in front of a crowd at a dogfight, the name of the business that Vick used to run his dogfighting enterprise is supposed to be named "Bad Newz Kennelz" and apparently on his MySpace page he lists his hometown as Newport News, VA "a.ka. Bad Newz", Vick supposedly had t-shirts and headbands made to promote his business, and testimony from an informant that says Vick personally handed him a bag containing approximately $23,000 in cash after the informant's dog won a fight. Wow the feds want this brother so bad their dicks are hard. I'll bet NOISB has an interesting take on this.

Milwaukyi situation

Milwauk-Yi get it? I got that from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. As a loyal Bucks fan it is my duty to be on official Yi watch and to be on the lookout for any updates no matter how miniscule. Anyway it looks like my prediction from the other day is coming closer to reality. I'm telling you 5 years from now Yi will be dismissed in the same breath as Wang Zhi Zhi. Yeah "who??" is right.


Get At Me, That's What's Up

Sending out the Bat Signal Rogue State style to my brethren. Ol'Mecca, JG, Karim, Iayaalis get at me. I know you got something to contribute and I need to get with you to set up your access. Peace for now.

Yi has no nuts

Are you as tired of all this talk about whether Yi Jianlin will play for the Milwaukee Bucks as I am? (If you're not a sports fan bear with me, I told you there would be sports posts) First of all I hate that the Bucks chose him when there were other equally if not more talented players available who would have fit better with their team philosophy and would not have pitched a bitch about being picked by them (Corey Brewer would have been an excellent fit: he can play the 2 or 3 or the 1 in a pinch and he can defend. With a lineup of Moe Williams, Redd, Brewer, Charlie Villanueva, and Bogut we wouldn't have set peoples expectations on fire but we would have been a lot better than people thought we could be.) Anyway they f'ed up and now the fans have to deal with this probably at least all the way to November.

I'll just go on record now as saying that Yi will never suit up in a Bucks uniform. I believe Herb Kohl (Buck's owner) is dumb enuff to let Larry Harris (general manager) handle this. I believe Harris and the Chinese government are both stubborn enough to let this play out however it will. And I don't believe that Yi has the balls to put a stop to any of this.

I read this info online where I don't remember ( I would credit the source if I could remember, maybe SI orDC Blog) but it seems the situation with Yao Ming when he was drafted by the Houston Rockets was very similar to what are seeing with Yi with one major difference, Yao stood up for himself. Seems Yao's Chinese Basketball Association team and the Chinese government weren't to keen on the idea of him playing in Houston which is not exactly known for their Asian-American population. This matters more than the casual sports fan might think because in order for Yao to play over here he had to be released by his CBA team. Story goes that the Chinese were prepared to hold Yao out a year to go to a city they deemed better, but Yao has a very strong personality and basically stood up for himself and forced his release. He is very aware of the influence he has as a major icon in China and realized he had to take a stand not only for himself but for any future Chinese atheletes that might find themselves in a similar situation. Sadly, apparently Yi does not have quite the same spunk and will allow himself to be steered in which ever direction his "handlers" choose to lead him. In which case I say who needs him, I said the guy had "BUST" written on his forehead when they first started mentioning him in the pre-draft hype and this makes me even more sure that whatever team he ends up with it will be on the bench and then out of the league.

Can we get some veteran talent for him first though?

Couple of Things

Sorry for the gap in between posts ( I would like to have a post a day at least but alas like many bloggers I have other responsibilities). But I have a few today because part of the reason for the delay is that I could not decide which one of the issues running thru my mind to post on. First of all have you heard about what's going on in Zimbabwe? Check it out

Basically the president Robert Mugabe is tired of his country having a western style economy (read capitalistic) and is trying to move to something closer to communism. Definitely an issue that every member of the African diaspora should be aware of. Also interesting, according to some reports the U.S. government may have had a hand in his rise to power over 20 years ago and currently the Bush administration has approved measures for economic sanctions to be leveled against Mugabe and his administration freezing their asset in America and forbidding Americans from engaging in any financial transactions or dealings with them, shocking.


Greetings to Web World Wide! (and this Blogfrica I keep hearing about)

Hello and what's going on! This post is the formal coming out for my new blog The Rogue Hour. It's my first stab at blogging so I'm pretty excited. I'm a big computer geek among other things and I spend a great deal of time around them at home and work so I've had the opportunity to visit a lot of blogs (most of my favourite are sports related: Deadspin, The Big Lead, Dan Shanhoff, Nation of Islam Sports Blog, HoopsHype, KissingSuzyKolber) and I've noticed that most of them start their original post with some sort of explanation of why they feel the need to press their views to the world in the form of a blog, so here goes mine.

As stated in my profile I'm a northener who went to school down south where I had a lot of adventures that helped form a lot of my somewhat radical ideas on the history of religion, politics, the concept of race, and the like. The name of this blog, TheRogueHour, comes from the name of our hip-hop group named Rogue State which I along with two other guys I met in college formed back in 1996 (which by the way I'm sure dates us before the hundreds of other groups calling themselves Rogue State that I pulled up with a MySpace search, I'm just saying we been in the mix). My hope is for this blog to become a collaborative effort between my current bandmates and whoever else that we know who might want to weigh in with a guest blog, we know lots of intelligent people who can offer stimulating discussion of a variety of topics. It will be one of our ways to get our messages out to the masses, especially those who are members of the African diaspora, because we believe many are in a state of slumber from which they must be awakened. So I feel like there has been enough talking about doing something and this is our way of just doing something. Who knows if anyone will actually read this blog full of our rants but I feel if we can stimulate some constructive dialog about real issues facing us as a people in this nation with just one person mission accomplished.

In addition I am a unabashed Green Bay Packer, Milwaukee Bucks, Milwaukee Brewers, University of Wisconsin, Marquette University, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee fan and will talk about a lot of sports here (I think my next post will have something about the Bucks idiotic decision to draft a guy who will never touch an NBA regular season floor in a Bucks uniform). So welcome to our blog, please feel free to post comments (even if they're negative it's all good for me cause of the experience).