Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Happy Birthday, Tom

I know I'm a day late but I couldn't let my favorite guitarist's birthday pass without recognition.

Not only a great musician but a great human being as well, Tom Morello is the guitarist for the band, Audioslave. Before that, he played for the band, Rage Against the Machine. He is also the co-founder of the non-profit organization Axis of Justice.

Tom has always been politically active and has consistently kicked ass on the guitar. Best wishes to a great American.

I found a fairly good wikipedia biography on Tom here.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial Day Freewayblogging

San Mateo

San Francisco

Daly City

San Francisco

San Mateo

San Francisco

Quote of the Week

"There is nothing that war has ever achieved that we could not better achieve without it."

-Henry Ellis

Click on Mr. Ellis' picture for a brief biography.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Freewayblogging in Color

I downloaded the image below from Google and decided to make a freeway sign out of it.
Here's how it turned out...

And here's how it looks when you're stuck in traffic staring at it above you....

Last but not least, here's how things look from the sign's perspective...

Friday, May 26, 2006

Kommandos Project: Breaking News

PT's Kruisers Take Potrero Hill
- San Francisco

In a pre-dawn raid today, the elite unit of Kvatch's Kommandos known as PT's Kruisers stormed and captured Potrero Hill, thereby securing these massive armored personnel carriers pictured below.

More here.

And when you get there, be sure to click on the Kommandos Project banner at the top to check out all of the action. This is a nationwide event and Kvatch's Kommandos are fighting an all out war against war.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Bushism of the Week

"If one were to measure progress on the number of suiciders, if that's your definition of success, I think it gives — I think it will — I think it obscures the steady, incremental march toward democracy we're seeing. In other words, it's very difficult — you can have the most powerful army of the world — ask the Israelis what it's like to try to stop suiciders. ... That's the — but that's one of the main — that's the main weapon of the enemy, the capacity to destroy innocent life with a suicider. ...Trying to stop suiciders — which we're doing a pretty good job of on occasion — is difficult to do. And what the Iraqis are going to have to eventually do is convince those who are conducting suiciders who are not inspired by Al Qaeda, for example, to realize there's a peaceful tomorrow."

—George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 24, 2006

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Official U.S. Language

Senate OKs English as official language

WASHINGTON, May 19 (UPI) -- The White House Friday backed a U.S. Senate vote making English the nation's official language, saying it's important for immigrants to become fluent.

Following emotionally charged debate, the measure was approved Thursday on a 63-34 vote. It now goes to the U.S. House of Representatives to work out differences in the proposal.

It declares that except for that which is already guaranteed by law, no one has a right to federal services in a language other than English, The Washington Post said.

"You want to make sure that people are fluent in English because you want them to be able to enter the mainstream of society, and you want them to do well," White House spokesman Tony Snow said.

Opponents warned the measure could negate a number of executive orders and multilingual ordinances not officially approved by Congress.

Here at PTCruiser, we know what the official U.S. language really is...

Monday, May 22, 2006

Road Rage

Occasionally I'll run across one of my signs laying in the dirt all ripped up because of someone's misplaced anger. It's kind of sad to see the poor little sign all torn up like that, but it also proves that the message is getting out there, that people actually read the signs. And I guess it's not so bad since hundreds if not thousands of people got a chance to read the sign before it was torn down in a fit of rage.

Luckily, though, a torn sign doesn't necessarily have to mean the end of a sign's useful life. It's not like it's that big of a deal to just toss it in the recycle bin and make a new one, but I'm actually finding it to be a lot of fun to "rebuild" damaged signs. And I'm getting pretty good at it.

Here are a couple of signs that Scarlet and I repaired this past Saturday. Tadaa!

A little black and white duct tape and the ability to put a child's puzzle together is all it takes. The "Wiretap This !" sign in the upper right corner was an easy repair since the "ripper" was obviously very weak and couldn't get up the strength to do a good job of it. Here's how it looks now:

Ready to go back into service, reminding the public of what a miserable failure their government has become.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Another Free Speech Lover (well, sort of)

A couple of posts down this page, a person going by the name of "free speecher" decided to leave a comment on my trashing of his president. Here's how it went:

Free Speecher said...
Not sure I understand why that makes him a doofus or anything else for that matter. I mean, I could care less that he read three or four books on G Washington, but where's the rest of the conversation and the point of him telling it. Seems to me, like every other left winger, you're just pulling from the hat to cut him down when EVERY president needs to be prayed for. Even Bill "gotta have a babe" Clinton needed prayer. Oh, my, did he EVER! What an embarassment HE was! BTW, how many signs did you put up when he was in office sending all our jobs overseas? Yeah, thought so! Just practicing a little free speech here, people! Thanks.
May 21, 2006 12:16 PM

PTCruiser said...
Oh, believe me, free speecher, I pray for this president every day of my life. I pray that he'll wake up and pull his head out of his ass, I pray that he won't launch yet another military strike on a country that is not a threat to us, I pray that he'll stop turning my country into a fascist police state, I pray that he'll stop listening to my phone calls and stop reading my e-mails. Yes, I pray for him quite a lot. But you know what? I've got this funny feeling that no matter how much praying I or anyone else does, it's still not going to change the fact that he's a doofus and a threat to human beings all over the world and within the United States. Death follows him wherever he goes.

And as for Clinton, somehow it didn't seem that important to pray for a president who wanted to get a little nookie on the side. But that's just me. I'm silly that way. Thanks for visiting, free speecher.
May 21, 2006 1:26 PM

What a Difference a Day Makes

I spent Saturday making freeway signs with Scarlet, the Freewayblogger. At 11:00AM, my backyard looked like this:

4 hours and a gallon of paint later, it looked like this:

All of these signs are going up on the freeways of the greater San Francisco Bay Area today. It didn't take much effort. We listened to music (Rage Against the Machine, Flogging Molly) joked around and even had time to repair some signs that some conscientious right-wingers ripped up. Nice way to spend a little time on a lazy Saturday afternoon. It'll take even less time to hang them today.

It's called free speech, people. Let's start using it before we lose it.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Bushism of the Week

"That's George Washington, the first president, of course. The interesting thing about him is that I read three — three or four books about him last year. Isn't that interesting?"

—George W. Bush, while showing German newspaper reporter Kai Diekmann the Oval Office, Washington, D.C., May 5, 2006

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Patriot of the Month

East Bay's Lee, other lawmakers arrested during D.C. rally

- San Francisco Chronicle

Rep. Barbara Lee of Oakland was among seven members of Congress who were arrested today when they blocked the front entrance at the Embassy of Sudan in Washington, D.C.

"Already too many, far too many people have died or been displaced, have been raped, villages have been burned down," Lee told a crowd of protesters. "The people of Darfur deserve to return home."

Lee, who has traveled twice to Darfur with congressional colleagues, is the most senior Democratic woman on the House International Relations committee, where she serves on the Africa Subcommittee. She has been a leader in the movement to divest state pension funds and university endowments from companies doing business in Sudan.

"I saw the desperation in the eyes of the people. I saw the violence, the results of the violence, the results of the genocide," Lee said. "We saw and talked with people who wanted to go home. We saw the gloom and felt the pain and suffering of what is taking place."
Full story here.

Representative Lee is a truly outstanding American. We desperately need more people like her in Washington. Good job, Barbara.

It is also of extreme importance to point out, for those who don't know already, that Barbara Lee was the only dissenting vote in both the House and the Senate against the resolution authorizing President Bush to use "all necessary and appropriate force" against anyone associated (or not associated) with the terrorist attacks of September 11.

You know what that means, don't you? It means Representative Lee is the only person on Capitol Hill with a fully-functional bullshit detector.

You can click on Barbara's picture in the upper right hand corner to go to her official site.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Bushism of the Week

"This notion that the United States is getting ready to attack Iran is simply ridiculous. And having said that, all options are on the table."

—George W. Bush, Brussels, Belgium, Feb. 22, 2005

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Can You Hear Me Now?

NSA has massive database of Americans' phone calls

By Leslie Cauley, USA TODAY

The National Security Agency has been secretly collecting the phone call records of tens of millions of Americans, using data provided by AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth, people with direct knowledge of the arrangement told USA TODAY.

The NSA program reaches into homes and businesses across the nation by amassing information about the calls of ordinary Americans - most of whom aren't suspected of any crime. This program does not involve the NSA listening to or recording conversations. But the spy agency is using the data to analyze calling patterns in an effort to detect terrorist activity, sources said in separate interviews.
Full story here.

As an extra-ordinary American, I am obviously appalled by this. Clearly the terrorists have won.

Be sure to contact your elected representative and your telephone company (keeping in mind that ALL of it is being watched/listened to) and let them know how you feel about this.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Quote of the Week

"Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding."

- Albert Einstein

Click on Mr. Einstein's picture for a brief biography.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Hellooooo Hayward !

I was over in the East Bay this weekend to watch my daughters perform in a dance competition. After we crossed the San Mateo Bridge, I spotted this beautiful pedestrian overcrossing at the eastern landing of the bridge that was just begging for a sign.

So, the next day I loaded a sign into the car and put it up. The traffic you see on the road here is on a Sunday. Anyone who has lived here in the Bay Area knows what kind of traffic this bridge gets on a weekday. The sign was still up when we left the dance competition this evening. Here's what thousands of commuters will be looking at tomorrow morning:

Friday, May 05, 2006

Spocko's Brain Surgeon

Long before this little blog even started, there was Spocko's Brain, a blog that covered not only Bay Area issues but consumer advocacy, religion, and everything in between. It was after numerous readings of Spocko's Brain that PTCruiser was born. Inspired by an inspiring writer, I decided that the coolest thing I could do in my spare time was to try and make a difference by expressing how I felt through my writing. As you can see, for those of you who honor me with your presence on a regular basis, that feeling has expanded to expressing my feelings on every overpass that presents itself to me.

But enough of my going on and on. Without further ado, I present to you , the brilliance of Spocko's Brain: (It's ok, you can have a peek inside the brain too.)

Click here to explore Spocko's Brain.

Bushism of the Week

"I like my buddies from west Texas. I liked them when I was young, I liked them then I was middle-age, I liked them before I was president, and I like them during president, and I like them after president."

—George W. Bush, Nashville, Tenn., Feb. 1, 2006

Thursday, May 04, 2006

This Says It All For Me

I found a great editorial in the San Francisco Bay Guardian this morning which pretty much sums up my feelings on the subject of immigration. Enjoy:

A dose of reality on immigration

EDITORIAL- The massive immigrant rallies, marches, and work boycotts on May 1 may have been an inconvenience to some, and the sight of tens of thousands of undocumented workers demonstrating in the streets may have offended a few politicians, but that's true with all great social movements. And there's little doubt that this is a new, great social movement.

The point of the May Day actions was to demonstrate the economic importance of immigrants — and to send a not so subtle message to Congress that punitive, regressive immigration "reforms" won't be tolerated quietly. The legislators in Washington, DC, can debate the finer details of amnesties and guest-worker programs, and the activists can argue over political tactics, but there are a few key points that should never get lost.

Immigration can't be addressed with fences, border patrols, and felony prosecutions. As long as economic conditions in places like Mexico and Central America (and political conditions in dozens of other places) are dismal, people will try to come to the United States — and they will always find ways of getting here.

The overwhelming majority of those immigrants contribute mightily to the nation's economy and to the fabric of society. The waves of immigration over the years have always made this a better country.
The laws that criminalize undocumented immigrants are cruel, sometimes deadly, and immensely expensive. They're also a complete failure, and always will be.

The only way to really address this issue is to get beyond the rhetoric and face some facts:

  • The reason most immigrants come to the United States is economic necessity. If we want fewer people from Mexico crossing the border, then we can help them make a decent living where they are. Imagine what $277 billion (the amount the United States has spent to date on the war in Iraq) would do for economic development in neighboring countries.
  • Big corporations love "free trade” agreements, but in the United States those deals only allow money and goods, not people, to move freely. In Europe, people can move too — but to make that possible, the wealthier nations of the European Union have poured billions of dollars into the less developed areas.
  • There's no way to get rid of the 12 million people who are living illegally in the United States, and even talking about it is a terrible idea. Offering them all citizenship, today, would solve a whole lot more problems that it would create. People who don't fear deportation can fight abusive landlords, take sick kids to clinics, join labor unions, vote, and refuse to accept economic, political, and social abuse.

And that's better for everyone. SFBG

This is Too Much Fun

I finally got around to hitting the beautiful Coast Highway with one of my signs yesterday. I just happened to be in Pacifica, and saw a pedestrian bridge just begging for a sign. You know, driving around with a pile of signs in the trunk of the car is a lot like walking around with a loaded gun. (Except nobody gets hurt with this weapon). You never know when it's going to go off.


Here's one that went up a few days ago while on my way to work:


There it goes again. It's nice to have Weapons of Mass Information at your disposal.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Si Se Puede

"Yes You Can"

With the help of The Freewayblogger, these were the signs on a number of freeway overpasses that greeted people coming into San Francisco on May 1st, "A Day Without Immigrants".

As you can see, the crowd of marchers had their spirits uplifted by the motivational freeway signs they saw as they made their way into the city.

There was a huge turnout for the march downtown, while the Mission District resembled more of a ghost town, as many businesses shut down for the day in support of the protest.

The few establishments that did decide to stay open on Monday reported very slow business.

In the end, I believe it was a very successful day for immigrants who set out to show how much they contribute to our society.

Between the two of us, we put up six "Si Se Puede" signs. And at the end of the day, the freeway signs that Scarlet and I posted in support of our immigrant brothers and sisters were still up, greeting drivers. Whether they liked it or not.

March and Mission Street photos courtesy of Beyond Chron.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Cruisin' With The Freewayblogger

Have you ever had one of those weekends where you look back on it and think, "That was so cool. Did that really happen?" This past weekend was one of those for me.

It started out Saturday morning when I participated in World Tai Chi Day in Emeryville. I met with members of my Tai Chi class as well as many others. At precisely 10:00 AM, we performed a set of Guang Ping Yang-style Tai Chi as a group. This was repeated by Tai Chi groups throughout the world at 10:00 AM in each time zone.

After that relaxing morning, I headed back to get ready for my son's swim team pool party, at which my wife and I volunteered to organize the food for the event. Which means that Mrs. PTCruiser did all of the work while I did my best to stay out of her way. Great job, honey.

Sunday was a real treat. I had a special visitor that day. Scarlet, aka The Freewayblogger came by my house for an afternoon of sign-painting, sign-hanging, homemade beer consuming, and political discourse. I have to admit I was a bit nervous about meeting him. I mean, this was the guy who started the whole thing. But my initial fears were quickly swept away by his warm handshake and seeing that he was a regular down-to-earth guy like me, just trying to make a difference in this world.

We immediately set about putting black paint to white cardboard. When we started out, my backyard looked like this:

A very short time later, it looked something like this:

By the end of our painting session, we had plenty of signs, so we loaded them into Scarlet's truck and headed out to plaster the freeways of San Francisco.

The thing Scarlet and I can't figure out is why in the hell there aren't more people out doing this. It is unbelievably easy to do and your right as a member of this nation. With a 36% approval rating, shouldn't there be at least 10% of the population frustrated enough to get off their asses and say something about their displeasure? Here's the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Here's a shot of Scarlet showing the rookie how it's done:

A bungee cord and a few strips of duct tape is all it takes to reach hundreds if not thousands of audience members. (Your results may vary based on traffic flow in your area.) Literally takes a few seconds. (I timed him.)

Don't forget to take pictures of your work. Sometimes these signs stay up for days, even weeks. Other times they're pulled down within hours by rage-filled conservatives who nearly have heart-attacks when they see the way you have dared to practice the ultimate form of patriotism...dissent.

  1. Obtain scrap cardboard.
  2. Paint cardboard white.
  3. Paint your message on cardboard.
  4. Hang sign on side of freeway or overpass.
  5. Repeat.

Scarlet, thanks for coming by and hanging out at the PTCruiser casa. The door is always open for you. Not only did I get the chance to meet a great American, but more importantly, so did my children. And when you get right down to it, that's what I'm doing all this for; In the hope that my children will NEVER be expected to go to war based on a lie.