Finn Harald Røed - blog archive 2007
November 02, 2007
We've sold our house in Norway and moved to Sweden. I'll have a new home studio up and running before Christmas, and will then continue working on my music projects!
June 10, 2007
My children's book "Poff og Pia"
is now published, and will be available in about 180 book stores throughout Norway (plus several Norwegian online book stores) within the next few months. I feel good about the result, and I'm glad (and a little proud) to experience that so many have found the book appealing enough to buy it - including all those book stores. It has also been a delight to receive feedback from many parents and others, saying both they and their children enjoyed reading about the Golden Retriever puppy Poff. A very big thanks to Matthew Q. Jackson, the book's illustrator! We did it!
April 5, 2007
The website of the new Norwegian book publishing company "ABC bokforlag" is now available at www.abcbokforlag.no
. Some of my published writings are already for sale (read excerpts for free), while others will be released in the near future, including the children's book "Poff og Pia".
March 12, 2007
Do I have too many ongoing projects? I guess so. Still, if things work out as planned, I will end up with three Internet CD releases, one music video and one (physical) book release within a period of about 12 months. I don't think I've ever been this creative or productive, at least when it comes to quality. The early 90's was a very productive period, but at least 50% of what I did never passed my own censorship. ;-) It feels good to have so much going on.
Right now I'm just as excited about the upcoming book release as about my next fifth official solo album. I believe this book, with both it's story and it's drawings, has the potential to stay within someone's brighter childhood memories, even many years after it gets tucked away in a bookshelf, box or drawer. I think that to one day get that kind of feedback would be the greatest reward I can hope for.
February 27, 2007
From time to time I've asked myself: How would average American republicans explain to themselves or their kids why they support going to war against more or less imaginary enemies?
It must be especially hard to make up a good reason now that it's proven once and for all that ALL the reasons for going to war in Iraq (weapons of mass destruction, connections to Al Quaida, potential nuclear weapons, possibility of military attacks, etc.) are proven not only to be wrong, but simply to be old-fashioned political propaganda and lies.
How hard it must be to justify the unnecessary deaths of thousands of Iraqis and Americans to a child, or to anyone else for that matter. This morning I noticed that the republican president candidate Rudy Giuliani had done his best to explain why America is at war. In a speech given yesterday, he first admitted there was a problem, and started out like this:
"We're doing damage to our reputation abroad. We have to redefine ourselves, not just our party, but our country, and we have to say to the rest of the world: America doesn't like war. America is not a military country. We've never been a militaristic country."
Isn't that an amazing thing to say? I'm impressed by the courage it takes to lie like that. America spends 57 times more on it's military than the six front-defying nations (Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria) COMBINED. The FY 2008 military budget is over 120 times higher than the roughly $5 billion per year the U.S. government spends on combating global warming. It is the highest US military budget since the end of the second world war, and higher than during the Vietnam war. The proposed U.S. military spending for FY 2008 is larger than military spending by ALL of the other nations in the world combined.
How can a US president candidate tell his people that he won't be running a military country? It amazes me. America is a war nation. A true military country without comparison in our time. Nothing Rudy Giuliani or any other republican says can change that. What could have become a good opportunity for Giuliani to start fixing the damaged American international reputation, unfortunately turned out to be just another "us against them" story:
"We're never going to be a perfect country, but we're a good country. So we don't like war. So why are we at war? It's real simple. We're at war because they're planning to come here and kill us. That's why we're at war. No one is making that up. President Bush doesn't make that up. The intelligence services don't make that up. The media doesn't make that up. You know that. You know it because you've seen them do it. Not just on September 11, but way back in 1993, and they tried to do it in London, and, we can go on and on and on."
Yes, this explanation is "real simple". At least if you want to explain the war to a child. Just say: "We're good. They're bad. We have to defend ourselves before they come and kill us." It seems I must have gotten too old for that kind of over-simplified rhetoric. Why not just tell the truth: "My child, we need their natural resources to maintain the American way of life. You know, money."
Too bad Giuliani couldn't think of more than two examples from the last 15 years as support for the now four year old ongoing war against the oil nation Iraq, which had no relevance to the terrorist problem until after the Americans made it become a great gathering place for terrorists in the whole area. I'm sure Rudy was glad he could add the London incident, where four young British immigrants tried to blow up some trains. Apparently, that is enough for most republican voters to justify the US military budget and the recent wars they've started.
According to Giuliani, America is at war because "THEY" are planning to come and kill them. Who are "THEY
"? Is it the Iraqis? The Afghans? Is it the muslims in general, or maybe some "liberal" or social democrat European countries? Or is "THEY" just the perfect term to use when describing a fictious enemy, and you can't really think of any good excuse or explanation whatsoever? Besides, isn't it the perfect term to use, when you simply want people to hold on to that basic impression of "we're good, they're bad".
I guess now we know what to expect if a republican candidate wins the next election. Why is America at war? Because THEY are coming to get them. No matter what a great job Rudy did in NY back in 2001, this must be about the lamest excuse I've heard for a long time. I'm sure most children will buy it, though. What worries me the most, is that millions of American voters will nod their heads and say: "Yeah, we have to defend ourselves against THEM".
January 27, 2007
A revised version of "Too beautiful" from the album "Breakable, fragile and alive" has replaced the original version. I've removed the first 12 seconds of me talking about how to press the play button, etc. Feel free to download the revised version via the album page. [ Download here
]. If you are interested in the original version, please contact me for an alternative download address.
January 25, 2007
I used to feel a strong admiration towards people that seemed to be perfect in moral questions and conduct.
I'm talking about individuals that really stick out from the crowd. People with the strength to stay on course in both good and bad days. Genuinely honest and well meaning politicians, kings and religious leaders. Brilliant scientists and groundbreaking musicians and artists sharing their talents for the sake of a better world. People fighting for freedom and righteousness without having a hidden agenda. Married couples that never had a fight. The perfect parents. The perfect husband. The perfect son. Not to speak of those that apparently never did anything that you could really point your finger at and say: "That was bad!".
I find most of my greatest idols to fit within these descriptions. In many ways, they have been role models of great importance. My guiding stars, so to speak. Not quite so anymore, though. Not if they turned out to be too perfect. In fact, today some of them simply make me feel belittled. They used to make me want to rise to a higher level of life. While acknowledging my own limitations and weaknesses, I wanted to become more like them.
Nowadays, some of them simply remind me of all the things I'm not, and all the times I have tried and failed to be someone else. I don't think any of them make me realize and appreciate the things I've actually achieved in life. All success I may have had, big or small, seem of little or no importance compared to their achievements, high moral and righteousness.
Let me clearify one thing. I still feel good about the principle of personal progression and becoming a better person. I still believe in the concept of improving both my strong and weak sides. I feel an urge to move forward. However, having the word "perfect" constantly ringing in the back of my head, never seems to help me reach my full potential. Not even close. I'm tired of the word perfect. It makes me lose track.
By trying to become like someone else, by more or less subconsciously copying their experiences or personalities, I find myself caught in a rather depressive corner of crossroads with lots and lots of blind ends. A dreadful place to be in the long run, where the choices I make always somehow feel like someone else's, no matter how hard I try to adopt them as my own.
I believe every creature is unique. None of us are the same. We all have different paths to follow. All these paths may lead to the same final destination, and may cross one another from time to time, but none of them are identical. Still, most of us tend to tune our lives and choices after the lives and deeds of the people we admire. We let them lead the way. We try to follow them on the personal path they've been lucky enough to discover. I still find it important to decide for a general direction, sort of like a general map without too many details. They say each of us are born unique, but die as copies. I'd like to explore how to prove that statement wrong. On a personal level. On my personal path.