Monday, June 17, 2019

Important issues

I've taken a couple of these polls recently where they ask you what issues are important to you.  These polls have been on progressive websites.  I've been short of shocked that they don't mention reform of election law -- given the nightmare we've been through recently.  Here are some possible points


  • elimination of plurality take all voting (12 of 13 swing states in 2016 had no majority winner); 
  • recall elections for federal office (by direct majority vote -- since it's unlikely that small states will agree to eliminate the electoral college for the initial election, but several states have recall elections); 
  • requirement that federal candidates reveal 1040; 
  • candidates receiving political contributions from businesses should be precluded from voting on legislation affecting those businesses; 
  • statutory rubric for invalidating elections where there is substantial foreign interference; 
  • return to paper ballots that are manually counted

Friday, June 14, 2019

Tulsi Gabbard and Syria

So I'm having a discussion on FB messenger about Tulsi Gabbard. I decided I want to memorialize it here. I'm not going to repeat the words of my interlocutor, just my words. 

This was about Tulsi Gabbard's stand on Syria, her visit to Assad, and her cautious statements about the standard story of who used chemical weapons there. It might be a little hard to follow without his words in between, but I hope you will get the idea. I'm adding some things in square brackets to clarify. I am preserving the structure of the message bubbles in the conversation -- even tho, perhaps, proper editing would suggest combining some of these into paragraphs

********

There are serious questions of who used the chemical weapons

But the point is that we can't help these countries. That's been clearly established in Iraq and Afghanistan. Our military intervention causes enormous suffering, but does not cure the problem. 
We can't help the Syrian people by escalating the war
Remember that the corporate media smears people who are against war. They're part of the military industrial complex
I think there is reason to doubt our government's characterization about what is going on in Syria. They lied to us about Iraq. I don't know that journalists are actually able to investigate this properly, in view of ongoing hostilities
However, I find the US holding chemical weapons while condemning others for using them hypocritical. We dropped napalm and agent orange on Vietnam
 Yet, ultimately, the devastation we wreaked there had no positive effect
We need to remove the log from our own eye first
 As to what happened in Syria, I sympathise with Tulsi for doubting
She went there. She listened to Assad. She made her own decisions as to what to believe.
She was a nurse in Iraq. She saw first hand what happened there. She doesn't want that to happen again. I agree
 My dad came here as a refuge from the holocaust. We bombed Germany, but refused to take refugees [my dad was fortunate to get a student visa]
We fight in Syria. We refuse to take refugees
 I don't know that she believed him [Assad]. But she has doubts.
Granted, I think Obama [who started our involvement] was far more moral than Trump, but that doesn't mean he didn't make any mistakes [e.g. Possibly about chemical weapons]
 We have no moral high ground to stand on here. That is false
Yes, brutal dictators are bad, but what we're doing to the people in the countries we attack is far worse
 War is the greatest human rights violation, aside from genocide
What we did to Vietnam, to Iraq, to Syria is far worse than their governments' abuses
I'm not saying that dictators are good. I'm saying that our military invention is worse, that we can't help those people by intervening militarily. We overthrew Saddam Hussein and instituted violent anarchy.
 Being progressive doesn't mean we have to blindly disagree with Putin about everything
My dad's laboratory in Madison was bombed by student radicals in 1971, who claimed to be trying to achieve peace. They missed the Army Math Research Center and hit my dad's laboratory instead. A student was killed. My dad had to be forcibly restrained from entering the ruins to look for other students. Finally, the fire department went down, and found Dave Schuster under the rubble, still alive, though injured. 
 My dad had no offsite data storage. 25 years of the records of his research were destroyed, research that was part of the basis of the cloudy crystal ball model of the atomic nucleus. 
I have no sympathy for self righteous bombers
 The fact that we've had a good government, at least for white people, domestically, doesn't justify our bombing countries with a worse domestic government. That's nonsense. 
Our international behavior has been, in many cases, execrable

***********

#Tulsi2020 #tusliforpresident #tulsiforpresident2020 #tulsiforamerica #tulsigabbard 

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Boy in the Window

 Here's some information about a show I'm going to be in

Cast interview with me https://youtu.be/IASGdon7_Ds


This is the ad for the show on New York Festival Site

This is to purchase tix for your people to come.  Unfortunately the festival doesn't comp tix

Meet the Playwright ad in Times Square Chronicles Magazine

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Abortion is a Blessing

I posted the following on FB

When I was growing up, the mother of one of my friends ran an illegal abortion referral service out of her home. She wrote a book about her experiences, called "Abortion is a Blessing." This book is now out of print, but is available free of charge on the website of The Freedom from Religion Foundation, of which my friend is now president, succeeding her mother. I started reading this book, but found it too upsetting, because of the extreme hardships imposed upon pregnant teenage girls who couldn't get abortions. Perhaps people will want to read it

https://ffrf.org/legacy/books/AIAB/

*****

It appears that FB is blocking the above post as violating community standards.

I protest. I don't think this should be blocked. It's not fake news. My friend's mom's act of civil disobedience should be discussable.

Addendum:

I may have misinterpreted the message I got from FB. It arrears appears that people did see my post  after all



Friday, April 19, 2019

April updates

I have a new reel


I've been performing with Cherub Improv, a volunteer group that performs in hospitals, nursing homes, and for young people -- and also gives workshops.  I've got an agent in L.A. now, so I'm hoping that will prove fruitful.

I was in a children's production of the Wizard of Oz April 7, where I played both the wicked witch and Glinda. Here are some photos on Instagram 




My art show has been moving through some libraries in Brooklyn: Borough Park, Mapleton, and now Cortelyou.  Flyer for my current art show




The most recent movie I saw was "Alita Battle Angel."  I also went to see Aladdin on Broadway.

I was recruited to file an amicus curiae brief in SCOTUS, which was due on tax day, so I had a hectic weekend.

Upcoming choral concert.


Thursday, April 18, 2019

Impeach? Or invalidate?

The Mueller report apparently concluded that there was substantial interference, but could not prove that Trump colluded with the Russians. Why is collusions dispositive? Wasn't the election nevertheless invalid, independent of collusion?  

People are assuming that SCOTUS wouldn't invalidate it, because there is no constitutional provision for such an action —  but courts in other countries have invalidated elections where there was sufficient tampering. I wonder if they were following constitutional mechanisms, or just flying by the seat of their pants.

The constitution has been interpreted to incorporate the English Common law, wherever that law was not abrogated by specific constitutional or statutory provisions.  The Common Law is a system of cases dating back for hundreds, maybe even over a thousand years.  Many aspects of our law, such as the “reasonable man” standard for negligence arose out of the English Common Law.

The English Common Law, historically, had two parts.  One part was called “law” and one part was called “equity.”  “Equity” included injunctions and laches.  The idea of “equity” was that where the result of law was too harsh, or non-sensical, a judge could, in limited cases, substitute his own judgment for the law.

Certainly, contracts are always voidable for fraud in the inducement, even if there is no provision in the contract for voiding them.  It seems to me that, by analogy, a statutory election could be invalidated given sufficient tampering or fraud.

Perhaps we ought to be considering a constitutional amendment regarding when tampering would give rise to invalidating an election, but maybe it isn’t necessary.  

It disturbs me that no one is considering this possibility.  No collusion, in everyone’s minds, means Trump until 2020, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Working on low belt

When I first joined my college glee club, I signed up to be a second alto, because I felt most comfortable there.

Later when I got a voice teacher, she switched me to first soprano, because my high notes were louder than my low notes.  Since, then, whenever I have had voice lessons, teachers have worked on my mid range or my high range, but never my low range.

YET, when I look at casting notices, they are always asking for an alto belt.  Now I've finally figured out, I think, how to do a low belt.

Here's an attempt https://chirb.it/G7Bkdr

Still working on that high belt.  Here I'm switching to legit when I get to about g4.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Thoughts about Israel

Yeah, I feel very conflicted about Israel.

My dad came here as a refugee from the Holocaust; however, even though his ancestry was Jewish, he was not Jewish.  He was Lutheran.  My mom was a WASP.

I’m not a Jew.  If I were in Israel, I would be not the same religion as the government.

I believe in separation of church and state — that the government should not establish any one religion.  That a government should be the government of all the people living there.

Jews were only about half of the people killed in the Holocaust. The others included gays, people with disabilities, Eastern Orthodox Christians, Gypsies and Armenians. Similar mass murder occurred under Stalin (20 million people), under Mao (28 million people), under Pol Pot (2 million people), in Turkey (1 million Armenians), in Rwanda (800,000 people) — even here in the Western Hemisphere the population of Native Americans declined by 90-95% (130 million deaths) due to European invasion (combinations of disease and oppression)-- not to mention the horrendous history of slavery.

I know that fear that says I need to flee to a safe place.  I understand why Israelis feel the way they do — the fear, the anger -- but there is no safe place.

Still, these Muslim countries that want to push Israel off the globe are no better — generally worse.  They engage in wholesale oppression of everyone, especially women and religious minorities. Israel is comparatively much more democratic and religiously tolerant — despite all the bad press that they get.

No one is trying to push the Muslim countries off the globe.  Who are they to try to push Israel off?

And, recently, Israeli scientists announced that they are going to have a cure for cancer within a year.  If they succeed, if Israeli scientists manage to cure all cancer, won’t we be glad that there was an Israel?

In fact, no one has clean hands. There are virtually no countries without appalling histories of human rights violations.  The human capacity for oppression seems unlimited. 

And where is there uncontested territory in this world? Certainly not here in the USA.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

spoofer posing as hacker

Please note the following misleading scam message.  I am posting this, because I suspect others have received the same and this one is a bit insidious

If you're new to scams, please note that just because a person is apparently sending from your e-mail address does not mean that they have actually hacked your account.  They can be spoofing your e-mail address -- which they can do without hacking.

I know they did not hack my account, because this e-mail does not appear in my outbox.

I also know they have not hacked my account, because I have not watched any adult videos.

abarschall@falati.com <abarschall@falati.com>
To:abarschall@falati.comFeb 24 at 3:16 AM
This account is now hacked! Change the password immediately!
You might not heard about me and you are probably surprised for what reason you are reading this particular letter, right?
I am ahacker who openedyour email boxand all devicesa few months ago.
It will be a time wasting to attempt to contact me or seek for me, in fact it's not possible, considering that I directed you this message from YOUR account that I've hacked.
I've started malware software on the adult videos (porno) website and suppose that you have spent time on this site to have fun (you know what I want to say).
During you were watching these "great" vids, your internet browser started out functioning as a RDP (Remote Control) with a keylogger which granted me access to your monitor and network camera.
Then, my softaquiredall information.
You have entered passwords on the websites you visited, and I intercepted all of them.
Needless to say, you'll be able to change them, or perhaps already changed them.
Even so it does not matter, my program updates information regularly.
What actually did I do?
I got a reserve copy of the device. Of all files and contacts.
I got a dual-screen videofile. The first screen shows the video you had been observing (you have got an interesting taste, ha-ha...), and the 2nd part displays the video from your own camera.
What actually should you do?
Well, in my opinion, 1000 USD will be a realistic amount of money for our small secret. You'll make your deposit by bitcoins (if you do not understand this, try to find “how to purchase bitcoin” in any search engine).
My bitcoin wallet address:
15y9WjrC2pGKvrxZWugeHXZNv1nbDvbNzw
(It is cAsE sensitive, so copy and paste it).
Warning:
You will have only 48 hours to make the payment. (I have an exclusive pixel to this e-mail, and at this point I understand that you've read through this email).
To tracethe reading of a messageand the actionswithin it, I installeda Facebook pixel. Thanks to them. (Everything thatis appliedfor the authorities may helpus.)
If I do not get bitcoins, I will undoubtedly direct your video files to each of your contacts, including relatives, co-workers, etc?

Another thing that can be useful is to get the raw message header for the e-mail message -- if you're reporting the e-mail.  In Outook, you can look for "message details." In Yahoo!  they call it raw message. This was the raw message for this spoof.

message details


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Friday, February 22, 2019

Updates for January and first half of February

Recent acting activities
  • "Sleeping Ugly" continued into January. 
  • an indie movie 
  • booked my first reasonably highly paid commercial. 
  • joined a short form improv team called Cherub Improv that does charity shows and workshops in hospitals and nursing homes. 
  • I've been to a few improv mixers as well

I got some new, slightly quirky headshots. Here's a link to those


I also opened an art show in the Borough Park Library in Brooklyn. It's gong to be there until February 28, then move to two other libraries in Brooklyn. If you're interested in my art, here's a link to some pix


I just realized that my single can be streamed on spotify -- duh.  I should have realized this sooner.  Warning: the lyrics are quite sociopathic


I wrote this single back in 2014.  At that time, I was participating in a Villain Contest for Jaguar, based on their 2014 SuperBowl commercial.  Originally, they said I should write a villain song, tho later the rules actually said I only had to name an existing villain song.  I hoped that if I won their villain contest it would make it easier for me to book the kind of villain roles that I dream of booking -- comparable to Emperor Palpatine in Star Wars.

I didn't win the villain contest, but then I realized I could use this song as a piece to use to audition for villain roles in musical theater.  I had a friend arrange it.

I'm working on a music video for the song, which I hope to take to festivals, but that's going slowly, due to SFX issues.  My current fantasy is that the song would be picked up by someone who is writing a musical --to be used for the villain character.  Some people have said they think it sounds like Disney Song. That would be amazing, if Disney bought it.

photo of me with Cherub Improv


Thursday, January 31, 2019

Penultimate Diversity Jam at UCBeast

The improv community is trying to promote diversity by having diversity jams. I attend from time to time, for age diversity.  There aren't too many active improvisers who have white hair.

Sadly, the theater called UCB East, aka "The Beast," is closing. Apparently, UCB is choosing to concentrate its resources at the Hell's Kitchen location, which I haven't yet visited.  I've done several class shows and jams at The Beast. It's not very convenient for me, coming into NYC on MetroNorth, arriving at GCT, but it's been a major part of the NYC improv scene for a number of years.

The penultimate Diversity Jam at UCBeast was January 27. I was there.  Here are some set photos that include me on stage.