media


In 1986 Run DMC released the song “My Adidas”.  Run DMC had been heavily criticized for wearing shoes with no laces, and for promoting stereotypes. So the rap group wrote a song called “My Adidas”. The wrote this song because as DMC stated “Yeah, we wear Adidas with no laces, we got gold chains, we got Cazals and all of that, but I go to St. John’s University.

The song meant something to them. The song meant something to the masses who followed Run DMC, and rocked the shelltop Adidas to show their connection with the group. It was a way of saying “don’t judge us by what we have on, or by what we look like.” It was a moment when being a rapper, being a b-boy, being poor, being from the streets didn’t mean you had no hope. It meant that you could wear your Adidas on the stage at “Live Aid” and still have people applaud. Run DMC  showed that you could be who you are and sign million dollar contracts. “My Adidas” was a song that debunked stereotypes and inspired people. I have never wore Adidas in my life, but in 1986 ‘My Adidas’ meant something to me.

Adidas partnered with Run DMC to form a clothing line of their own. It was this song and Run-DMC’s attitude that showed that Hip Hop was not just a form of music, or some lyrics put on a page. Run DMC showed that Hip Hop was a lifestyle. Since 1986, many artist and entertainers have followed the model set by Run DMC. Adidas was the first company to reap the benefits of hip-hop marketing, and hip hop expanded by a partnership with corporate America.
The entire history of Run DMC is a series of firsts…

  • The first rap act to chart in the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100 more than once
  • The first rap artist with a Top 10 pop charting rap album
  • The first with a R & B charting album
  • The first rap artist with gold, platinum and multi-platinum albums
  • The first rap act to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine
  • The first rap act to receive a  Grammy Award nomination
  • The first rap act to make a video appearance on MTV
  • The first rap act to perform at a major arena

Fast forward to 2012 and Adidas now sponsors a hip hop artist called Two Chainz, another average rapper, with a major contract, who has just released his first album. Unfortunately this sponsorship seems more like pissing all over hip hop and it’s history, and the struggle of those that came before. Business are smart to look at a fan base and seek to capitalize off of it. These corporations don’t care if an artist has talent,or what they are saying, they just want access to the fan base and the rappers oblige them. Rappers as unproven commodities with lyrics devoid of meaning proudly hawk perfumes, clothes, liquor, colognes, headphones, ect…because they were never told where they came from, so they have no idea of where they should be going. They turned on the television, or went to youtube and saw other people had done and they copied that and become just another produced rapper.

Hip Hop is something you live.

Hip Hop is something you live

There is no struggle, no heart, no art, it’s a business. That’s all it means to them, that’s all their fans mean to them. Hip Hop means nothing to them, you can hear their passionless voices clinging to a hook. You can see it in their videos and the issues they do not speak on. They have taken the money, in exchange for the meaning. They have taken promotion over the substance and this is why these partnerships, no matter how much capital is put into them, mean absolutely nothing. They are all in such a rush to be just another rapper that history will forget.

Is it the partnership with corporate America that has caused the meaning to leave hip hop?

Was it Run DMC’s promotion of materialism, Hip Hip’s ultimately ruination?

Does Hip Hop simply not have any meaning left in it?

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Should Olympics athletes be paid? You betcha

Once upon a time, Olympic athletes had to sign pledges affirmed that they were amateurs, because communist athletes were not definable, they weren’t amateurs, yet they weren’t exactly “pros” like Michael Jordan. What the Russians were doing a was labeled as unfair. So in 1986, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) changed the Olympic Charter (most likely to allow “all the world’s great male and female athletes to participate.” America has had a long tradition of patriotism and participating in the Olympics as a badge of honor. Unfortunately, the Olympics hasn’t been about patriotism for a long time. America has a few other long traditions of capitalism and of being self-righteous.

Recently former medalist Dwayne Wade and Ray Allen have suggested that athletes be compensated for Olympic participation.  In 1992 a Michael Jordan led Olympic “Dream Team” nearly boycotted the Olympics due to corporate loyalties. Wade and Allen are not the first to come out in favor of athletes being paid for Olympic participation, but this new controversy against them reeks of racism. You see the help is the one asking to be paid, while the plantations owner is saying you’ve been paid enough, while others are saying you have millions… Perhaps we are not asking the right questions…

Is Jerry Colanagleo running USA Basketball out of the goodness of his heart?

Is Mike Krzyzewski coaching out of sheer patriotism?

Are Nike and Addias donating the uniforms and footwear?

And if they didn’t are they seen as being less patriotic?

Games of the XXX Olympiad, take place in London, England from 27 July to 12 August 2012, will be a multi-billion dollar industry; so much for volunteerism, individual effort, just hurry up raise the national flags and add up those USA totals. This is not a matter of whether or not other countries are paying their players. When black players have a valid opinion on anything that isn’t sports related, it’s always a problem for the masses.  Track and Field athletes get paid to train year around for that one shining moment to represent 300 million plus people, not to mention the gold medal prize money because medalists do receive money.

None of the past US Olympians that have spoken out have asked for million, perhaps they are making a case for future amateur Olympic hopefuls. Because they should be paid, including the bob sledder and figure skaters. 190 plus participant nations support their Olympic athletes 100% financially, the U.S. government gives zero money to its athletes. All the host cities in the world, except those in the USA, have supported their host Winter and Summer Olympics with billions of dollars, the Olympics is run entirely from corporate money, the corporations have control. Hasn’t professional and corporate involvement in the Olympic’s dampened it’s spirit? If these citizens are so patriotic then, aside from asking the right questions, give these Olympians jobs, cars for their service or better still their company allow the use of their symbols and products in return only for favorable publicity and public good will. They should be paid just like the college athlete, whose coaches earn 5 million per year, should be paid.

By using pros isn’t the U.S. admitting that we are on equal footing with the rest of the world. That we can’t have our amateurs compete against the under developed countries of the world and have a change of winning. Sportscasters, bloggers and fans have hit these players on how much money they make, for what they do, “all they do is put a ball in a hole”, “they are crybabies”,”now they want to get paid when they should volunteer” is what is most commonly heard. A Professional Athlete by definition is: a person who is paid to undertake a specialized set of tasks and completes them for a fee.

Perhaps our overriding American bullying nature has caused us to forget the definition of things, but that’s not the truth. The truth is that White Supremacy subconsciously causes the populace to rail against blacks that stand their ground, not wait for whites to lead the way or say ‘I disagree’. Where is the spirit of the games that had America pushing its youth to compete against the youth of other countries? Where is the old adage that anyone could have a chance at glory? Regardless of who’s paying, money has never bought inner drive or passion. Speaking out when our society has lost it’s way, may not seem as patriotic as say urinating on Afghans, or torturing “enemy combatants”, but that is what citizens are supposed to do, that is what makes a good republic. So stop whining about purity and patriotism and use amateur hopefuls or pay the professionals.

by MG Hardie

As the NBA Playoffs begin I reflect on the excitement of the regular season. Miami gets Lebron James, Shaq’s battle with father-time, The looming lock-out, the Sacramento Kings heading for Anaheim, the Lakers manic play, Kevin Love setting the NBA consecutive double-double record, the best dunk contest in a decade, Derrick Rose’s climb to the MVP,  the ridiculous fine David Stern unjustly levied on Kobe Bryant, Blake Griffin’s High Fly better than Lebron’s Rookie-Non-Rookie season and oh yeah, the trade of Carmelo Anthony to the New York Knicks. Carmelo Anthony’s summer wedding to television personality La La Vazquez, is where Charlotte Hornet guard Chris Paul toasted that he and Anthony should get together in New York, for their version of a dream team, since then everyone knew that Carmelo Anthony would be traded. Why?  Mostly because Anthony refused to sign a three-year 65 million dollar extension with the Denver Nuggets. Denver offered Anthony the extension only to over inflate Anthony’s value so they could dupe Mikhail Prokhorov the New Jersey Nets new Russian Billionaire owner into giving away the farm to get Carmelo. The trade talks swirled out of control with rumors that the Nets were sending as many as five first round draft picks as well as players to the Nuggets for Carmelo Anthony. The rumors stayed absurd until January when the Nets owner arrived in the states and showed the NBA exactly how he made his Billions. He shut down the season long trade negotiations, which shifted pressure on New York to get a deal for Anthony done.

Every fan and sandbox sports prognosticator, analyst and commentator said “Get Carmelo Anthony at any cost”, “Talent like Carmelo Anthony don’t come by often”, “Get him now and sort out the details later.” They asked questions like “could Anthony and Stoudamire co-exist” , “would there be enough basketballs to go around” and “could Anthony handle the spotlight”. As the trade deadline loomed the deal for Anthony formed. Denver received Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, the Knicks 2014 first-round draft pick, the Warriors’ 2012 second-round pick, the Warriors’ 2013 second-round pick and $3 million in cash. New York received Carmel Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Anthony Carter, Renaldo Balkman and Corey Brewer.  New York wanted Chanuncy Billups included in the deal to make sure that ‘Melo’ was comfortable in his transition. The Nuggets received a host of young energy players with potential, New York waived Corey Brewer. Since the trade the Nuggets have played with good offense and passion, and the Knick have played with a lack of defense, motivation and chemistry. All of New York’s issues I am sure that columnist and commentators from around the nation will find a way to blame Isiah Thomas for.

In the off-season Amare Stoudamire left the Phoenix Suns and signed a 100 million dollar contract with New York. He led a resurgence of a failed franchise. He had the commentators talking about the Knicks, but more importantly he had the fans believing. The Knicks were winning with Stoudamire leading the way. Amare wasn’t happy in Phoenix, always in Steve Nash’s shadow never getting the credit he deserved. He went to New York and was proving that his gripe was legitimate. Amare led the Knick to some stunning and amazing victories and he was the leading candidate for MVP, until the NBA trade deadline came near. The nearer the deadline, the more the newly resurgent Knicks began to falter. Never mind that trading away half of your team mid-season for a player who never defended is not a good idea. Never mind that the team could have waited and signed Anthony to a reasonable contract at season’s end, save for a lock-out.

No. The pressure was get Carmelo now, Do the deal now and What are the Knicks waiting for. Was it the media’s pressure? Was it owner James Dolan’s myopic focus on Denver that he allowed the a deal for Utah’s star point guard Deron Williams slip through his fingers? New York could have had Carmelo Anthony and Deron Williams and still kept a player or two. In fact many in the media were surprised when Utah traded Deron Williams. Williams was abruptly traded to the New Jersey Nets and the Billionaire’s clinic was complete. Had any of these commentators actually seen Carmelo play? 22 million per year for Carmello when Lebron James and Dwyane Wade are earning 16 million per year. As a point guard Chauncy Billups is no slouch, but he isn’t two players either. Since the trade the New York has played a 14 -14 record and the Denver Nuggets have surged with a record of 18-6, Denver has also moved up two playoff positions, and it didn’t take a year to gel together like, Carmelo has said it may take in New York. The new Nugget players have played hard, fast and together. They run ten deep, share the ball and play defense. The real story of this blockbuster Carmelo Anthony trade isn’t the season long drama, it isn’t that the commentators were wrong or that New York win or lose may have to make a few more moves to get things right in the Big Apple. No the real tragedy here is how the Carmelo Anthony trade cost Amare Stoudamire this years MVP award. Now, Mr. Stoudamire wont suffer with his 100 million dollar contract, but if he never wins an MVP award he can look to the player standing next to him, to the owner and to the media.

MG Has Spoken on Twitta

In the 2012 NBA season, even with the addition of Tyson Chandler, have been having a horrible season and have been outplayed by those cast out to get Carmelo, particularly Danilo Gallinari. The Knicks traded everything to get Carmelo, but yet they are still losing. “Expectations are still high. Things will still be great,” he said. “I’m not down, I’m not regretting anything. I’m not regretting the trade.” Carmelo Anthony. With Jeremy Lin playing like not other guard before will Carmelo seed the helm of the Knicks to him…I don’t think so. Big dogs don’t like little dogs even if it is to their benefit.

(From Part 1)

Anxiety, Stress, Nervousness, Insecurity, Internet inactivity…Perhaps this is why we hide behind avatars and professional profile photos. Are our “Friends” really inside that gadget? If so, what happens to them when we turn it off? Are we really linked? Don’t look now, the App beacons. 3G, 4G, Android,3D, Windows, GUI, Laser Etched, 4K, App, Opened Sourced, Cellphones that double as tasers, omnitouch… consume or perish. Who doesn’t have a touch screen television with dashboard widgets, but we were promised the eradication of diseases, the finding of cures and the solving of age-old problems. Strangely, there are more diseases, no cures and more problems than ever before. There are those that say “Technology is not dangerous the way in which we use it is dangerous”, and as always the debate ends when something tragic happens. We were promised security, but there are even more security measures, concerns, threats and prisons. We were all promised more knowledge, but we seem a bit dumber. These machines were said to help us make decisions, but unwanted pregnancies and divorce rates are higher. 50 Billion searhces on Google each month and we still haven’t found the truth… the search continues.

Overlays, screens, processing power, virtual children, pets, exabytes, tickers, more distractions. You get a ticket for talking on your cell phone, but somehow the law doesn’t apply to police officers… it never does. And soon as we find a discrepancy, a fault, a sub routine error, we get sold on using technology to fight technology. We are, for better or worse, married to technology. It seemed reasonable to create thousands of  nuclear weapons, but now it seems unreasonable for anyone else to have one. Skype. What did you call me? Technological advancement was supposed to free us, but are we not invisibly chained to our desks, LCD, Do-dads, interfaces, whatchamacallits and doohickies? A hacker can take down Sony’s Playstation Network for a month and compromise 20 million credit cards in the process and the news doesn’t make a peep because this it the new digital way of life, where these threats are common place. Twitter beefs have real life and death consequences. Entertainers tell their followers that “Google is God”.  Nintendo’s new console wants players to “feel” shapes and objects in the game all the while we are trying to mentally project our digital self as a form of control, the illusion on control that is. Is there a such thing as technological oppression? How ironic it would be if your entire life were photo shopped…. Maybe you should post that.

Internet dependence. Labor-saving, hands free, fail, manage the inbox of the mind. We claim to treasure our individualism, but we own the same devices, made by the same companies… go figure. And now the gadets are more important than your safety, or the safety of others. Print is Dead and were it not for two wars, newspapers would have went the way of the Dodo. The web took the Music out of Music Television, which has now resorted to exploiting children for ratings, while marketing and early adopters have convinced us that with these devices is a better way to exist, than without. Revolutions in technology have innovated new ways to make a living. Yes, the world has changed, a job in the factory and mill is now one in the office and idea centers. It seems as though Tech pioneers have sparked and stunted creativity all at once. How did we get to the point when someone with a cell phone can shut down corporations, crippled the stock market and hamper our government? The technology can connect us and disconnect us, as a tool it can bring the world closer (see Egypt). The truth is that Revolution comes through the people not from the  technology. It will all begin to dawn on you when you discover that you cellphone is actually spying on you.

(Cont)…

For the last few decades the world has been blanketed with digital technology, it has been called the digital age. It is not news that technology and computers have gone global, but is this digital age what was promised to us? Sure we have devices that can process ten terabytes of data per second, but it also freezes every other time we press a button. Caller I.D. fooled us into think that this was the best way to go, and we welcomed them into our homes. There were grand promises of a utopian paper-less society, but all studies have concluded that even more paper is being used. These machines were supposed to make our lives easier, our jobs more productive, our homes happier. There were pedictions that they would make going to the DMV and court effortless. What really happened is more lawsuits, more food, drug and product recalls than ever before. On top of that just about everyone is depressed, unhappy or in denial of the need of therapy. Sure you can fall in love, date, break up and get divorced all online, but it appears that society is crumbling around us. You can see it, sense it and feel it. We have communication devices, but seemingly we are still unable to communicate with each other. What is really going on?

Screws still fall out. Drones still kill people in error. We still don’t know who in sports is taking PED’s. The media is still largely devoid of emotion, passion and intelligence. Facts are still unverifiable. The tax code is still not simplified. Cars still use roads. The political left and right are more akind to the Crips and Blood gang  fueds of the 1980’s. Journalistics standards have still not returned. The Palin’s are still popular and Dennis Kucinich is still mired in obscurity. Live shows still aren’t live. The police can go through your cell phone without warrant. Cell Phone companies still charge you and call HSPA+,WiMax, and LTE, 4G (when they really aren’t), World conflicts still kill hundreds of thousands of people and seem like video games, to those not involved. Blended classrooms only show different learning, not better learning. Earlier adopters continue to make you feel like you are missing something, as if you’re not cool because you don’t have the latest noise cancelling ear buds. Technology is still the god of many and they must submit to it. They are afraid to turn it off, they will even have accidents because of it. They will destroy relationships because of it even though the device works correctly 70% of the time. Have we forgotten that we leave bits and piece of ourselves online every time we turn on a computer device, or that to this generation privacy is now mythical a Middle Earth. With button press consent, our private information is now public? Haven’t we lost freedoms? Just to click a post.

(Cont)…