The actual interview starts about three minutes in...
“I don’t mean we cannot attack the party. Why can’t we attack it? But everybody thinks the evil of the nation is caused by an institution when, in reality, everybody is an accomplice,” he says. “In the near future, it’s impossible to change the institution. So we need to change the people. And if we can change the people, then the party will change.”
... It’s possible, he explains, that the passers-by really didn’t notice Yueyue, who later died. “I believe their explanation, because if you are not careful enough, you may indeed miss the girl lying on the ground.” His point is that, in an uncaring society, misfortune becomes invisible.
If some things make him despair, is he also inspired? I wonder what he thought of the villagers of Wukan who last year organised their own elections after protesting against what they said was the illegal seizure of land. “In Wukan’s case, I see the light on the road to China’s future democracy,” he says more emphatically than I had expected. “My view is we can have elections in some cities first. I wrote a blog called ‘Let Elections Start for Some People,’” he says, a clever reference to Deng Xiaoping’s famous aphorism, “Let some people get rich first.” “I don’t expect China to have a general election tomorrow, but I do think we can have elections in some developed cities as a test.”
full interview www.ft.com
Guns 'N' Roses was inducted into the Rock 'N' Roll of Fame last night and three of the original members came to play at the ceremony (Slash, Duff McKagan and Steven Adler), along with two members of the 90's era lineup (Gilby Clarke and Matt Sorum). ESPN Radio did an interesting half-hour interview with McKagan last week and if you're a fan it's worth a listen.
Appetite for Destruction was arguably the best hard rock album ever made. Thus, it's no surprise that in the band's set in Cleveland last night all three of the songs performed were from that first record.
After Appetite, the band slowly disintegrated. Lies was a strong but rough mixture of live tracks, outtakes, ballads, and race-baiting and homophobia- the last record of the raw feeling that existed in those early years.
The Use Your Illusion double record was bloated and overproduced; mixing brilliant work ("You Could Be Mine"), dreary indulgence ("November Rain"), solid bluesy rock ("14 Years"), reflection ("Estranged") and a fair dose of tawdry crap ("Get in the Ring").
The last LP recorded with a majority of the original lineup still intact was The Spaghetti Incident?, an album of punk covers. Never one to avoid controversy, concluded the album by singing a song by Charles Manson, reportedly over his bandmates objections.
The band drifted away after that, with all the original members leaving except for Rose and latter day keyboardist Dizzy Reed (many of the Use Your Illusion members reunited later in Velvet Revolver).
Rose went on to spend the next 13 years recording "The Most Expensive Album Never Made"- until it was made. Along the way, too many musicians came and went from the group for anyone to bother trying to keep track. Chinese Democracy was finally released in 2008, eliciting a yawn from critics worldwide.
From what I can observe, the rancor between the group's members comes down to this: Axl Rose believes he is Guns 'N' Roses and the other members of the band think that it was, well, a band and there was a collective contribution. Given the meagerness of Rose's own output since he fell out with the other members, it's not hard to draw the conclusion that the greatest talent in the band was its instrumental core. Rose was certainly a talented frontman but left to his own devices he's spent a lot of time spinning wheels, turning into the Howard Hughes of the music industry.
Jon Pareles wrote:
Chinese Democracy” (Geffen) is the Titanic of rock albums: the ship, not the movie, although like the film it’s a monumental studio production. It’s outsize, lavish, obsessive, technologically advanced and, all too clearly, the end of an era. It’s also a shipwreck, capsized by pretensions and top-heavy production. In its 14 songs there are glimpses of heartfelt ferocity and despair, along with bursts of remarkable musicianship. But they are overwhelmed by countless layers of studio diddling and a tone of curdled self-pity.
Last week, Rose announced to great fanfare that he would not be attending the band's induction into the Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame (the generally publicity shy Izzy Stradlin also skipped out). Reading between the lines, it appears that once source of dispute between Rose and the Hall of Fame was over which Guns 'N' Roses members to induct- Rose likely wanted some of his current bandmates included in the lineup. Bassist Tommy Stinson certainly deserves to be in the Hall of Fame- but for the Replacements.
If Rose wants his current band ("Guns 'N' Roses" in name only) to be appreciated, he would be better off spending less times staring flame wars on the Internet and more time releasing CDs. Over the last 21 years, he has only produced one album of original songs. That's hardly a career effort.
Funky Jesus takes first place at the Hunky Jesus contest: photos.
The Big Ten Women's Gymnastics Championships featured the following Nebraska athletes on the uneven bars: Jessie DeZiel, Lora Evenstad, Janelle Giblin, Jamie Schleppenbach, Brittany Skinner and Emily Wong.
More NCAA college gymnastics photos after the jump.
Facebook would like users to trust them with their friends and contacts, photos, private communications, business dealings and more. I ask: what have they done to earn this trust? The answer is very little.
For a long time, I was reluctant to link this blog to Facebook, even though the option has been available for some time. Facebook and Google's Big Brother way of taking over choices and decisions has left me highly suspicious. I already have a personal Facebook account that I have devoted ample time to. But I'm reluctant to devote any more time toward projects that will come under the umbrella of these two companies due to their sheer unaccountability. Facebook can freeze an account at any time for any reason whatsoever and it is accountable to no one- no clear guidelines have been established, no official appeals bodies, no system of openness or checks and balances. The same is true of Google services such as Adsense and Google Plus. Both companies have already shown their ability to punish users for actions as frivolous as publishing under a pseudonym or posting a video of the Buzzcocks.