About Me

Based on a career (mis)spent in American politics, I debunk politicos, pundits and spinners, usually with a dose of humor to make it fun.

Email me with news tips, comments, and ideas for disinfo rehab any time!

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© 2003-2007. All Rights Reserved.

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August 27, 2008

Posting to Go Light This Fall Due To Work + A Cool GOTV Video!

One of the disadvantages of having so many blogs, including the Best Local Blog, The N Judah Chronicles (sorry I can't help it, I never win stuff like that and it is kinda cool), the Adama For President site, and various other online things I'm always experimenting with, is that they take a lot of time to keep up. And I also have to pay the bills with real work too (unless like, a ton of people are willing to buy my shirts and stickers, stat).

In addition to the work I do for a local media and software company, this week I will officially begin work for a local campaign, the No on H campaign. As such I won't have the time to keep up everything the way I'd want, so this site will go on hiatus while I work on the campaign.

I want to thank one of the spokesfolk for the Yes on H campaign, who called me a Nazi online, repeatedly, when I raised some questions about the so-called Clean Energy Campaign. Thanks to you, dude, I am now working on the campaign and can pay all my bills! Yay!

The N Judah Chronicles will continue, because I like it and people read it. Besides, it's the best local blog in the Bay Area according to readers of the Bay Guardian. I can't quit now!

That's all for now. Oh and before I forget, I had the pleasure of meeting Hooman Khalili from Alice 97.3 and he's got a really cool video on YouTube about why it's important for young people to vote. I urge you all to check it out, because it's a short, nonpartisan, high impact ad. Click here to watch it now!

July 30, 2008

Holy Frak! The N Judah Chronicles Won Best Local Blogger at...the Guardian?

Time for a little shameless self promotion...this morning a friend called me up and told me that apparently Bay Guardian readers have named the N Judah Chronicles the "best local blog" in their annual "Best of the Bay" poll.

I had no idea that they even had such a category, much less tell my friends, neighbors, reader and whatnots to vote for me. I have to say I was shocked.

There's a bit of irony in all this, true. But this was a poll of their readers and somehow, The N Judah Chronicles, which started as a joke email to 20 friends 3 years ago, has now evolved into something. Who woulda thought?

Seriously, this was a nice surprise this morning, and a nice way to go back to work after my trip to Nerd Prom. To all of you folks who apparently nominated and voted for me, um, THANKS!

April 22, 2008

Celebrate the Demolition Derby Primary In PA With A VIVA ADAMA Poster!

When I'm not doing actual work, or updating my popular blog, or this blog, I've been slowly working on a few new sites, because, well you just can't have too many friends, or too many blogs.

One of my side blogs is the Adama for President blog, which features t-shirts, bumper stickers, and now, posters spoofing the Obama '08 logo and celebrating all things Battlestar Galactica.

Today, I am releasing the first in a series of posters, modeled after the awesome "Viva Colbert" posters from a while back. A window-sized poster is coming out later today, and a larger one as well. For now, though we have the 23" x 35" poster for sale, and it is pretty awesome. Be the coolest kid on the block and order yours today. Or, order a stack and plaster the Mission with 'em.

February 12, 2008

Taking A Break From Work and East Bay Mayhem...My Button Collection!

I needed to take a break from work, and didn't feel like writing anything about the impending Mayhem and Destruction our lefty pals in Berkeley and their righty antagonists are cooking up, so I posted some pics of a small portion of my button and memorabilia collection.

Click through for an enlargement, and see all the historical goodness!

March 16, 2007

Friday Road to Hades: T-Shirts for Sale!

Whilst trying to think of a way to uplift the political dialogue in Our Fair City, I came up with....nothing. Especially after this week's shenanigans, and some of the nonsense over at the Mayor's re-election site. (SFist? "Mean but Funny?" WTF?)

Instead, I came up with the first of (potentially many) snarky T-shirts for sale here at my new storefront, Pantograph Productions, provided by the good citizens of GoodStorm.

The first round of shirts include a spoof of NBC's breakout hit Heroes, in light of recent events at SFist.com, and a few others, as well as a prototype design for my other blog, the N Judah Chronicles.

Now, before you fire off your angry emails and comments, be aware of the fact that yes, I know I'm going to Hell for this. Then again, I was most likely headed there anyways, so I figured if this was a way to help pay off my webhosting bill, it was worth it.

Enjoy your Friday, and be sure to enjoy the warm weather and a Saturday St. Patrick's Day this weekend!

December 11, 2006

Technical Difficulties Part 2...

As I indicated on my other website, I've not been able to post many updates as I'm dealing with a number of technical problems that are taking up a lot of my time as I seek a long term solution, rather than put up with band-aid solutions.

In particular, I've been dealing with an enormous amount of spam email, more than my mail program can filter out, it seems. Also, the trackbacks (but not comments) are being spammed to the point where it's slowing down the performance of the system that run this site, as I have to delete literally 100s of false trackbacks to sites promoting "mobile phones" and "ringtones" and more. It's a real hassle, and I'm looking for a better way to filter all this crap out besides just deleting the notification emails and deleting everything by hand. There are some other technical issues I've been working on as well, but I'm not going to bore ya with the details. Suffice to say if I'd taken more computer classes I'd be getting some much needed upgrades and changes done a lot faster.

Other things are coming up, including some significant changes to this site, but you'll have to keep reading to find out what those might be!

November 5, 2006

In Memoriam: Helen Dewar of the Washington Post

I woke up this morning to find out that my cousin, Helen Dewar, formerly of the Washington post, died yesterday at the age of 70.. Although I knew she was ill, and would call her 2-3 times a week to talk to her about her work, and about the latest campaign trail gossip, lately it seemed like she was getting a little bit better, health-wise so it was a bit of a shock to open up the Post and read this.

Earlier this year, I wrote a short tribute to Helen when she got an award from the Washington Press Club, which had some info about her life's work.

She was a great person, who accomplished a lot in her life, and had a sense of fairness, accuracy and integrity for her work that I find sorely lacking in today's media. It was an honor to know her and learn from her the insider's guide to US congressional history. She will be missed by good folks in DC and around the country who knew of her work.

UPDATE: Fishbowl DC wrote a nice tribute in their blog recently, following up on their kind words when she got her lifetime acheivement award earlier this year. David Broder was kind enough to put some words of remembrance as well in his column. Other Capitol Hill insiders have noted her passing too.

The Examiner had a piece as well but the copy didn't do her justice. She did not cover "education issues" in Virginia - she was the only reporter to comprehensively and fairly cover the desegregation of schools in Northern Virginia. If you want to know what happened during that time, literally, you can't get a better source than her reporting.

Come on, guys.

UPDATE: I have been doing some Google News searches and am linking to unique tributes to Helen on this post. The Stockton Record had a nice tribute, fitting, since she was a native of Stockton. They also mention her time at Stanford, which you read about here earlier this year.

Also, here's a picture from former Senator Jim Jeffords (I-VT) with Helen doing what she did best, asking questions and getting the story.


May 10, 2006

Death By a 1000 (DSL) Cuts In San Francisco

I was all set to write all sorts of really great articles for my new site. But EarthLink had other plans. So rather than write about the upcoming big debate tonight between Steve Westly and Phil Angelides, or about any one of the many articles I've written, I'm instead devoting today's missive to telling the world that Earthlink sucks.

There are other colorful metaphors I could use, but why get wordy?

For almost three weeks now I've had no Internet service at home. And, as I'm now working two jobs, one an all day on site consulting gig, and keeping up with my other clients after hours, this has been more than an annoyance. It's costing me real money, in the form of lost income because I can't make the deadlines I normally can when I work at night.

Even more infuriating has been the true incompetence of Earthlink customer service, primarily based in Outer Godknowswhereistan, who can barely keep up with a conversation in English, much less talk or do anything about the actual problem. And of course, they don't wanna give you your money back for screwing up. But they do know about looking at modem lights!

It seems I'm not the only one with this mysterious outage, and I've been trolling Google and finding plenty of horror stories. What amazes me is that these morons are now going to be in charge of San Francisco's WiFi experiment with Google. Talk about doing the "crane" of stupidity.

Yes, I know there are "alternatives." All of which are not much better, since the companies are all so big, they don't give a tinker's cuss about any one customer, or providing any reliable service. They don't have to. One person quitting and going to Yet Another Crappy Telco means nothing to them, or the competition, and they know it.

Whatever. I'm sure today when the Genius from SBC/ATT/Earthlink/Comcast/Whatever.com will do something. I certainly hope so. At this point I don't really have much "consumer choice" no matter what happens.

Will someone please explain how large, bureaucratic, slow, and incompetent organizations such as these are better than their ilk in a socialist system? Or at least how they differ? Or how I as the customer benefit from dealing with these morons?


UPDATE:The incompetence of these people is stunning. The SBC guy came out and verified that nothing was wrong with the acutal phone lines (Earthlink sent him out here, not at my request) so it's clearly an Earthlink issue, not a user issue.

But they insist on calling me back with more BS about "modem lights" and of course most of the time it's someone on another continent who has no idea what they're doing. And of course, half the time they mysteriously drop the call as I'm being transferred from Godknowswhereistan to the US reps (who really aren't any brighter, but at least I can understand what they're saying).

I'm doing what I should have done when I moved in, and am getting Comcast's internet service. Sure it's a monopoly here in town, and sure, they're not that much better, but at least it works. Almost 4 weeks and they still can't get it up and running. They sure do have a lot of excuses though. I wish I had a job where I could offer up BS and excuses and still get paid!

You'd think their slow, 384/128 DSL with cheap-ass modem would be easy to maintain, but I guess not. And these geniuses are supposedly going to run the City's Free WiFi? Why even bother? We should go straight to the rock throwing and effigy burning now, and save us all the wait. Besides, the flagmakers can make up some "earthlink" flags we can burn

Next time someone asks me to take a "stress test" downtown I'm telling them I don't need a "test." Earthlink ensures I'm stressed!

April 28, 2006

Introducing Greg Dewar.com !

The paint is dry, the CSS assembled, the PHP under control. Welcome to my new website.

This site is the replacement old blog once known as Schadelmann.com (German for "skull man"). The old site was fun, and developed a readership, but changes in my life and work, as well as my interests, prompted me to make the move to a "real" website.

If you're looking for Yet Another Political Blog, look elsewhere. My focus is not to prop up one side or another, or parrot the party line from the liberals , the conservatives, or the mushy middle.

Instead, in my role as a longtime political professional and producer I'm going to spend my time debunking politicos, pundits and spin not with partisan rhetoric, but with an analytical scalpel (and occasionally a blowtorch and a pair of pliers).

I will also be casting a critical eye on politics behind "political reform", a subject most political commentators won't tackle. Free passes won't be given to my friends on the left, right, Texas left, or sideways. And of course, what political blog is complete without cheers and jeers for the ongoing soap opera known as the Democratic Party, and special commentary on our esteemed Governor. I'll be kicking off the site with commentary from the California Democratic Party Convention in Sacramento this weekend.

Most of all, I aim to entertain, as well as inform from a perspective that's not usually found amongst our chattering classes. If you're a member of the press and you want a point of view that's interesting to your readers, I'm the guy you want to talk to. If you're a voter, a citizen, or someone who needs someone to help them navigate the waters of current events, this is where you want to be.

Thanks, and enjoy the site!

Also, be sure to check out my website on San Francisco urban life and the city's Muni system at The N Judah Chronicles!

April 26, 2006

Almost Ready to Go! CA Democratic Convention Coverage Coming Up!

After some technical mishaps, including the death of DSL at home (!) I'm almost done with the new look - just some color changes and a few more HTML/PHP/CSS changes and we're done! I can't wait.

This weekend I will be attending the California Democratic Party's convention in Sacramento, and will blog live updates, much as I did in 2004, and had a lot of fun doing so.

With so many term-limited folks running for so many offices, most of whom are as unknown as the offices they seek, and being just over a month away from Election Day, you can bet that it'll be a circus. And when a convention is more like a circus, it usually means campaigns do lots of weird stuff. Best of all, it usally means that there is also lots of free stuff to be had as well!

UPDATE Live webcasting of the convention can be found here if you're just dying to see the circus without any commercial interruptions.

March 29, 2006

Confused by the URL?

If you typed in the URL to my old blog at www.schadelmann.com , you have been redirected to my new blog, still under construction. My site at Journalspace will officially end its paid service as of June 10th, but a new site will be up here LONG before that!

Until then, check out my other site at the N-Judah Chronicles while we finish this site up!

July 21, 2005

Two Years Later - Some Things Change, and Some Things Don't

Today (July 21st) marks the official Two Year Anniversary of my contribution to the great store of knowledge online. I suppose it'd be a bigger deal if I was a regular on CNN's "On the Blogs" crap-fest or was part of some great big media conglomerate (or wannabe conglomerate), but so what?

When I first started this, I really never thought I'd be keeping up with it for very long. I had just moved to Los Angeles with a vague sense of dissatisfaction with my then-current state of affairs, and wanted to live near the beach.

But after a couple of months I was getting bored, and I was getting more work as a writer. Which was fine, since that was what I programmed to do for my entire life, except for one thing: I hadn't worked as a professional writer in a while, and it was taking me too long to get my pieces done on time.

A friend suggested a "blog" as a way to get back up to my old speed and here we are, two years later. Back in 2003 a "blog" was a bit of a novelty - today the word "blog" is so overused, and the nature of "blogging", once a grassroots, informal network of folks offering their opinions for the hell of it, is now becoming a messier, less classy version of the media behemoths it claims to be against. The famous Maddox opines more thoughtfully than I do about some of the inanities of some bloggers - you can read that here.

A year ago I was still having fun with this site, as you can read here, but a year later a lot's changed. I'm finding myself less and less interested in debunking mythology and the BS we're getting jammed in to our living rooms every day by the mass media and the political system - the BS is too much, too fast, and frankly, I'm not as interested in it any more.

Plus, the nature of my work has changed. Whereas, I used to work as primarily a political consultant offering training and direct mail consulting, and spent a lot of time out and about, now I work primarily as a copywriter to other firms, and I'm also working in collaboration with award winning film director William Gazecki on a feature documentary about the Screen Actor's Guild, which has been a lot of fun to contribute to.

Had it not been for my brief stint helping out with a friend's SAG signatory production, Four Weeks Four Hours, last year in the hot desert (which you can read about here!) I might not have been able to work on this project. Just goes to show no effort put forth is wasted. And the movie came out OK too!

But I digress. I like in general the direction things are taking, as I enjoy the kind of work I do a lot more than having to deal with multiple, lazy, stupid politicians like I usually do. The only downside is that after a day of studying, reading, writing, and researching, I find myself less interested in sitting down for another couple of hours researching, reading and typing up a decent, non-craptacular blog entry.

So at this point I'm starting to re-think the whole concept of the site. I like publishing something online, if for no other reason than to make sure I stay on the first page of a Google search of my name. I do plan on offering some tools online for those who'd like to get involved in politics - a delayed announcement is coming next week. Really.

However, to make this something worth my time to invest in, and something worth anyone's time to read (vs. the zillions of crappy blogs, big and low budget, that are out there now), it's clear that one has to assess the changes in "blogging" and online publishing that have occurred so far, and try and look ahead and adapt and overcome as needed. If there is one thing I'm learning a lot about right now, it's the importance of being able to evolve, vs. staying stuck doing one thing for one's entire life, careerwise, or otherwise.

So if you've been reading, thanks, and if this is your first time, peruse the User's Guide and the archives, and I'm sure you'll find something you like. And if you've landed here from a Google via The Doofinator's office, all I can say is, you really should have listened to me two years ago. I would have worked for a lot less, and you'd not be in such a mess.

Oh, but that's another column.

PS: Feel free to make contributions via the PayPal Button on the left, or send cases of Schlitz Beer, or DVDs, comics, or other merchandise. Email me and I'll tell you where to send the loot!

© 2003-2006 Greg Dewar | All Rights Reserved | Originally Published at www.schadelmann.com

December 28, 2004

On the Road and Misc. Detritus from Blogs in LA...

Loyal Readers: From now until the new year, posting will be quite light as I'm on the road (again) visiting relatives. But I'll be back up and running on Jan. 1.

Until then, you can follow the mushrooming non-controversial controversy that has been developing between Martini Republic and local Los Angeles blogger Cathy Seipp. You can read her entry at the National Review Online or an earlier version on her personal blog, and MR's response.

I don't like to indulge in the all-too-common spectacle of Trashing Other People's Blogs, something that so many in the "blogosphere" seem to do. It's usually childish, and after all, if we all have our own blogs, we can say what we want, and who cares what someone else writes, right?

That said, I find this particular mini-mushroom cloud of rhetoric somewhat entertaining. Why? Because the Martini Republic crew is engaging in the classic behavior of a blogger(s) who get more traffic by attacking more well known bloggers. That, and cultivating the kind of "yell first, questions later" rhetoric usually associated with the Right.

Which is odd, because on paper I should like the Martini Republic site. I like martinis, they like them too. They write about politics from the lefter side, so do I (usually). They seem to be like good folks, and I'm a good guy.

But after watching these over-dramatic mini-storms play out constantly, I get the impression these are easily excitable people, the type which kick your ass when you agree with them, and kick your ass when you do not. In other words, just writing this column will probably earn me a flame on their site.

I guess I should count myself lucky in that I got a nice snarky comment when responding to an earlier hullaballoo about Bob Hertzberg's web ads (another non-controversy fanned by MR).

It had that particular brand of snark whereby the poster "responds" to things you never wrote in the first place, and then backpedals when challenged. I got several emails from folks saying more or less the same thing, and I put down my flame thrower to try and engage in some civilized conversation. Never heard back from 'em either. Hmm.

Reponding to such things didn't result in a lot of added traffic to my site, though. Perhaps by posting this one I'll get "more readers" to my site. After all, isn't that what it's all about?

Maybe not. Either way, this is probably the last time I'll ever comment on another blog, aside from recommendations in the links section. Happy New Year!

UPDATE: After getting some comments and several emails saying "no we don't  attack other blogs" this article appeared at Mack Reed's LA VOICE website that more or less says that MR has appointed itself the liberal version of the right wing attack dog.


© 2003-2006 Greg Dewar | All Rights Reserved | Originally Published at www.schadelmann.com

March 26, 2004

Short Update: On the way

Hey Gang:

My normal update on Friday is coming late this evening due to several work projects under the gun.

In the meantime, I'd invite you all to check out a project I'm working on - it is an Independent film feature directed by my good friend Alexis which I am now the "producer" for. It is a great story called Four Weeks Four Hours.

The first part of the film has been shot, and you can watch clips of it in a rough trailer at the site. We're actively casting for the second part of the film - if you or anyone you know is an actor/actress in the Los Angeles area, or better yet if you or anyone you know wants to help us with locations, money, a Hummer, money, or money, feel free to email me and I'll get the gears in motion.

Check back late late tonight for a "real" update! Thanks!

© 2003-2006 Greg Dewar | All Rights Reserved | Originally Published at www.schadelmann.com

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