Free Holiday Blogger Template: Stars n’ Stripes

It’s almost the Fourth of July.  In addition to barbecues, dry heat, and celebrating our country’s independence from Britain 234 years ago, that means it’s almost time to blow stuff up! Here’s a Blogger template that you can gather your lighters, non-flammable clothing and sparklers to.  This particular Blogger template uses a custom font call to enable a unique font in the header and aged textures for the stars and stripes in the background, giving the theme a “faded glory” look.  Whether you’re celebrating the Fourth or just showing your pride, this template is for you!

Download Stars n’ Stripes

World War II Propaganda (as Art?)

This is a guest post by Chris Reynolds. If you would like to guest post on 10 Times One please click here.

Propaganda is to art as Twitter is to literature; concise, quick, bold, direct.  The message is put across as simply as possible using often using whatever means necessary.  Guilt, fear, threats, idealism, utopianism, racial slurs and violence — in addition to all the traditional design techniques like color, movement and perspective — can all be employed to drive the message home.

It amazes me the things that were printed and put on display in public spaces, but the same techniques are used today in advertising (though, possibly to less of an extreme).  Smashing Magazine did a post last week about propaganda art and the artists who make it, so I thought I’d use this as a chance to dig through my own archive of World War II propaganda art and show off some of the more interesting or unique posters and art that you may not have seen before.

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

American WWII Propaganda Poster

German WWII Propaganda Poster

German WWII  Propaganda Poster

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Chris Reynolds is one half of the design team at Arcane Palette Creative Design. He writes in his personal blog, jazzsequence, on subjects like music, technology and social media and shares links, videos, and posts various personal music and writing projects. You can also follow him on Twitter.

“One Big Ass Mistake, America”

obamasmokingOne
Big
Ass
Mistake
America

That’s what I saw gracing the back of an old Ford pickup truck as I took the cat to the vet on Thursday.

it immediately made me think of a Saturday Night Live sketch from last week that we just saw the night before.

my first thought in response to the truck was: “wow, yeah, because health care reform really is a horrible idea.  what could we be thinking?”

my second thought in response to the truck was: “gee, conservatives and republicans don’t know anything about spending lots of money on special projects.  oh wait, i’m being sarcastic.”

the point that was made in the SNL sketch (well, there were several, this is just one of them) was that we’re in the middle of a global financial crisis, and here we are, spending an assload more money on new stuff with the hope that it might help boost the economy.  and that’s all it is, a hope.  because the market is volatile, and it’s based entirely on people’s perceptions, because people’s perceptions are what is going to cause the economy to thrive — consumers believe that the economy can and will bounce back, and spend money as normal, thereby boosting small and large businesses and rebuilding the economy — or fall further into recessions — consumers feel that there is no hope for recovery and hole up, pull their money out of the bank and start stashing it under the bed like it’s the 1920s, thereby causing more banks to go under, more companies to close shops, and the global economic crisis to escalate until we live in a Mad Max-ian alternate reality where socoiopathic daredevil types hotrod their cars into killing machines and rampage the highways stealing gasoline, the only remaining currency.

on one level, i can empathize with people who are suspicious of spending more money on things that seem unrelated to the economic crisis.  and i read 2 different references in the past week to the great firewall of china; given our financial debt to china, it does seem a little snotty of us to get persnickety about their…well, just about anything they do, really.

but the old business saying that “you’ve got to spend money to make money” is true, and while health care reform seems unrelated, it’s, uh, not.  if people are healthier, or feel like they’re covered in the case of an emergency, they’re more likely to dip into that “rainy day/in case my liver explodes” fund they’ve been hanging onto for the last 10 years.  and the thing is that taking potshots on spending loads of money…isn’t that a bit unfounded.  it’s not like republicans don’t like spending money.

the difference is what the money is being spent on, although i challenge anyone to convince me that creating competition for major insurance companies is a bad thing, or that creating more checks and balances so people who, for example, have horrible pre-existing conditions (like, um, pregnancy) can’t be refused coverage.

so yeah, seeing someone scrawl “One Big Ass Mistake America” on the back of their truck irked me a bit.  it also made me wonder what kind of horrible crap this dude is listening to to believe that?  probably sean hannity, who — as i’ve mentioned before — is known for his accuracy and truth in reporting.  and it made me sad that there are people out there who don’t see the good that a lot of these Obama-driven initiatives will come to, and will probably never see it.  it makes me anxious to get this stuff started — to be able to afford insurance for myself and my family, to see electric cars on the street, to get the frak out of the middle east and start rebuilding relationships with countries that we alienated thanks to g-dub.

and it makes me worry for 2012.