Saturday, June 12, 2010

Two by The Grass Roots

According to Wikipedia, The Grass Roots achieved one platinum album, two gold albums, one gold single and charted singles a total of 21 times. Between 1967 and 1972, The Grass Roots set a record for being on the Billboard charts for 307 straight weeks. They have sold over thirty million records worldwide.

But seriously, taking one look at the members, can you imagine the groupies they must have had?? Wonder how they had time to even think of making music?

Here is their official site and Wikipedia has a lot of information on the group here,


  1. Glad to see that you're back again in your daily, N. What's on my mind is that you should not stop from sharing all what's on your mind. We need to hear different voices. W/o putting videos you can still be writing, right?
    Believe me everythings gonna be OK in TR. Stay!

  2. Thanks for you for your comment, Nihal. You are like a glimmer of sunlight on a dark day. I suppose it is just the video ban that upsets me so much. It's the fact that nothing is dependable in a country where every decision is made without a moment's reflection on who it might effect. I assume you watched the video on Despotism? What makes you think things will get better? It seems like things are getting worse in Turkey at the moment and really, I want to be hopeful. (You an write me privately if you want to explain. I would really like to hear your ideas. I NEED SOME HOPE!)
    Since I was able to, at least, get my photos back online, I am feeling better. But look at your lovely blog, what happens if one day, all your creativity suddenly vanishes? One day blogger is shut down, then Google, then google returns and all means of watching Youtube is shut down. This is probably particularly frustrating for a foreigner.

  3. That is some crazy stuff going on. I keep thinking about you whenever I hear about Turkey.

    Oh, thanks for posting the Grass Roots videos. Gave me goose bumps and I had a great time air drumming and singing along all to my younger wife's chagrin. I love the Grass Roots, saw them at a free concert back in the 80's.

  4. @doc
    I recall listening to Temptation Eyes when I was a kid, with my transistor in bed at night! Janis Joplin and Gordon Lightfoot. I had never actually seen what they looked like before this clip. I'll have more coming ever week, even though I cannot easily watch them. (I scheduled them last month, every week til the end of the year)

  5. Bulent MurtezaogluJune 13, 2010 at 8:25 PM

    Nomad I don't think things are getting worse in the country at large. Life on the 'net might be getting worse. It isn't that the net under Turkish jurisdiction is getting worse, it is, rather, that the Turkish jurisdictional power is beginning to get asserted. We were basically under the US law on the net before and now the Turkish gov't/law is beginning to make itself felt more. It is doing so using its own peculiar means and attitude. Unfortunately, even in its improving version, this is the way it behaves as of now. This is like traveling from a rich country to a developing one. Where you traveled to is not getting worse, it is improving, but of course it gets worse for you because you are in a poorer environment.

    Why should any of this make you feel good, I dunno. But if the events concerning the net left you feeling worried about life in general here, there's no need to worry.

  6. I would like to hope you are correct. It isn't merely the Youtube ban- or even the Google ban that makes me somewhat depressed for the future of Turkey. I suppose it is the arbitrary manner in which power and authority is used in Turkey. The way some holding power seem about as backward in their social views as anything I have seen in my time in this country. (I'd prefer not to give specific examples, if you don't mind, because my blog is generally not so critical of Turkish politics.)

    And I think there used to be more of a sense that saw itself as a unique but European country. Now I think that direction has shifted. And as hypocritical as the EU can often be, it is still a whole lot better- in terms of humans rights and personal freedoms- than most countries in the ME.
    Thanks for your comments, Bulent. And I will do my best to cheer up!

  7. Bulent MurtezaogluJune 14, 2010 at 1:12 AM

    Oh, I don't mind at all, I know what you mean. That's probably not a huge worry since the sections of the populace who'd resist the kind of thing you worry about are not that weak. So much so that there were grounds to worry about what some nut might to with the energy that manifested itself in those rallies in '07. There are kinds of nationalism that do not look socially conservative, but would be dangerous in ways I don't dare imagine. I'm not saying the rally-goers were like that, but I am just saying if I were to start speculating...

    Keep in mind that we have a conscript army taking considerable losses inside our own borders with thousands showing up for our slain kids' funerals feeling very angry and still we're remaining reasonably sane and as free as we've ever been. I've seen martial law declared in this country for less. These are the things I think about when I need to convince myself things are better than they have been.

    In any event, 'bir sey olmaz' comes in handy in such situations. You write in English and I suppose much of your readership is living abroad. There are ways to transport your point of entry to the internet at large to a machine in the US. A proxy server[1] located there would be one. I haven't tested any but it looks like they can be had for a few dollars a month. That is the worst case scenario, and it is not too bad.

    [1] This is not like ktunnel and the like, it works transparently after you make an adjustment to your web browser. You don't notice a thing.

  8. Sadly, Bulent, I have found those proxy servers to be be blocked as well. Probably since all connections are routed through the telephone company- though I am not an expert on this subject. That is the latest triumph for the government.

  9. Bulent MurtezaogluJune 14, 2010 at 2:02 AM

    Are you sure they are all blocked? That's hard to believe. Which one did you try? All the free ones I checked work from here (Istanbul). Not all of the free ones will allow Turkish Youtube traffic though, for obvious reasons of very heavy demand.

    If I were to get one I'd be eyeing something like . It is not exactly end-user stuff but with some minor help it'd work for anyone. In any event all it takes is access to a machine abroad that has bandwidth available. Those can be rented -- virtually -- on the net. I could set up BM's Expat sanity saving service in a day if I wished w/o getting off my behind. If I can do it anyone can, if there's demand I bet you somebody will.

    There are other ways also, but never mind. If your problem were reaching the Turkish readership it would have been different, but just for you and people who read you from abroad this is not a problem.

  10. I can only speak from my own experiences of last week and you are free to refute my conclusions based on your own. I haven't claimed to be an expert. I had been using Google DNS for the last year(s). Having uploaded my posts using their server, I found that changing the settings to use a different proxy, prevented me from seeing any of the photos (only on my PC.) So apparently shifting to a new DNS server will make viewing my photographs (and I must have thousands) impossible to view. Nevertheless, I spent a couple of days trying OpenDNS, NortonDNS and another and all had the same negative result with regards to YouTube plus the above problem. Contacting OpenDNS for answers, I was told that governments have many ways of blocking sites. Ok. Their attitude was, like, "we never promised you a rose garden." They advertised themselves as being free and reliable so I suppose it boils how you define reliable. Or whether you choose to add parenthesis or not.
    At the present time, I have to use a combination of tools to get around the ban but it is an unnecessary headache.

    I am working on a post regarding the Google tax issue which I am researching. So much for my giving up on the blog!

  11. Bulent MurtezaogluJune 14, 2010 at 3:01 PM

    Ah DNS is a different issue. Yes. The first bright idea they had was breaking their own DNS servers. Various ways to avoid problems caused by that exist. You've apparently used three or the more popular ones.

    They are now interfering in a different way in addition to the DNS scheme. A proxy would be one way of getting around it (but that itself can be blocked, if they choose to).

    At this point it is more a technical support issue for non-technical people trying to circumvent this than a real problem. Enough services and ways still exist (there are also other ways that don't involve buying services from abroad, but they require installation of software). The problem is that even if a service helping people were offered, it cannot really advertise itself. This is the kind of thing that the corner store PC guys are more suitable for.

    Good luck with the tax issue. It can be hard to figure out the loss in tax revenue because a branch office here would be doing roughly what Google advertising customers are doing. That is they would be paying something to the main Google abroad so it is possible for the branch to not run a big profit to be taxed. It isn't as simple as figuring out the difference between what they pay out to Turkish site owners and what they receive from Turkish advertisers. The government (any government) has a big problem there and I am not surprised disputes arise. (The KDV issue mentioned in the press doesn't hold water, it turns out, since their customers pay it as they process the invoice even if Google itself doesn't collect it. At least one businessman here tried to convince me otherwise though, so be careful who you ask.)

    Google isn't talking, of course, but this is the kind of thing where the parties can produce BS far faster than an ordinary person can detect it. In the big picture it isn't clear what is owed and for what anyway.

  12. Wow, that band is David Cassidy fragmented into 4. They RAWK!

    I kind of agree with Bülent about things getting better here (Internet etc. excepted of course). I've only been here 8 years, but there were a few times (when the government changed, for example) that I could see everyone tensing up as though the military were going to step in again, or that some other upheaval that would directly affect their daily lives was going to happen. Then the coup didn't happen and everyone relaxed. But when I used to teach students that were my age, I could see there were things in their living memories that current events were causing to resurface and make them nervous. When I taught uni students (mostly born in the late 80s), they seemed to lack that sense of the immediate terror of current events. And it wasn't just that they were kids-- it was that most of them hadn't personally experienced very many negative consequences of world and domestic events (the ones from the SE excepted, I suppose).

    I suppose I should count myself lucky I'm not having any google problems, and I don't know why. I think I'm using OpenDNS but I'm not sure. Maybe it's just a matter of time til they screw me too.

    I'm glad you didn't give up Nomad. In a way, passive resistance is the best we (as foreigners) can do, and keeping our little presences up, whatever they may be, is probably the best (and safest) protest.

  13. Bulent MurtezaogluJune 17, 2010 at 5:48 PM

    Stranger, if you are interested, there's some stuff on the net that shows what people my age (mid-40's) and older saw and lived through. In fact there's a lot of material but I'll give you just one link of a search to get all the installments of a network TV documentary that captures the main events from the POV of the mainstream press (with all that implies). Click here.


Always great to hear from visitors to Nomadic View. What's on your mind?


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