Tuesday, November 22, 2011

OWS

The current events precognition attempt follows. In the event of eventual wrongness or rightness, in the details or in full, this remains no official prediction; rather, it's one model of how the stasis (upon the down escalator to foreverdeath) could be maintained:

(1) "Financial crisis" reaches a relative nadir in the screwing-over of the general populace;

(2) The masses, inasmuch as America is concerned, become upset. Instead of picking up weapons and attacking those who attack them, they are guided by endless bombardment of civics class belief in democracy, nonviolent effectiveness, et cetera into approaching a "stop traffic" attempt to "call attention" to massive problems experienced in (1) above. They take a few years to get to this, first attempting to live out the free market dream;

(3) They occupy various public venues and commit some minor vandalism against the elites who have stolen incalculable sums of "money," lives, hopes and dreams from the rest of the world. Their occupation serves as a useful steam release valve: decades after civil rights marches, a new generation has proof that it can take to the streets and accomplish something;

(4) To remind the sans culottes that doing such things is risky, some domestic military force is called down upon them. This galvanizes the peons into thinking that a radical action has been taken. Military force is not used to a level sufficient to actually incite combat or serious resistance;

(5) Elite media throws events into perspective for most. Fox News rants about the occupiers being crazy anarchists. NPR rants about them possibly not having sufficient direction, being hypocritical and maybe having a few right ideas that must be taken into consideration;

(6) Months pass. After the stew has simmered long enough that everyone believes in it and has formed a stern opinion, major government formally takes notice of the protest, admits some mistakes have been made, and introduces harsh "financial reform" that will prevent the problem(s) from ever happening again. Obama* (*may be replaced by any token leader) gives great speech on curing the ills of the financial system;

(7) OWS goes home. Rich remain rich; world financial system remains unchanged. Corporate lawyers bill a few extra hours changing compliance programs at brokerage firms. Some occupiers, tired and in need of a job, claim victory. Others grunt that more was not done. A few people notice that nothing has actually changed, and are dismissed as radicals completely out of the bounds of reasonable discourse;

(8) Fox News complains that the token financial reforms are destroying the economy and are an indication of socialism. NPR heralds the reforms as a triumph of reaching across the aisle, while offering some snippets from commentators who criticize the reforms for not going far enough, and others for why they might prolong the recession. Subcommittees adjourn; life goes on.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sin City

(Reposted from February 2007)

Frank Miller’s 2005 movie “Sin City” is a work of sadism, paedophilia, misogyny, hatred and fear. Note that this one did not say “about,” although it is also about all of those things.

Sin City at IMDB

First a brief relevant character summary. This one’ll identify people by their real names, not their character names, for simplicity.

Josh Hartnett plays an assassin. Mickey Rourke plays a random muscular thug. Bruce Willis plays an aging cop. Jessica Alba plays an erotic dancer. Clive Owen plays a random boyfriend.

“Random” used here in the sense that no one’s past life, career, etc. has any apparent bearing on what they do in the movie.

Begin with sadism. The entire movie, even to the extent that it permeates the other topics listed at the beginning, is an expression of enjoyed violence. Not in the sense of violence as an accurate portrayal of the world, or as a necessary means to an end. Rather, the violence is the end in itself, and it is meant to be thoroughly enjoyed by both the characters and the audience. All aspects of plot are shaved down to get at the violence, to the extent that the film mostly consists of sequences where violence is actually occurring, sequences where a character is sneaking about in anticipation of violence, or the occasional situations where characters are merely discussing violence. The violence is not senseless or without purpose; it is reveled in. Characters and scenes are crafted to make the violence more enjoyable.

What stands out here is not the fact that violence occurs and that it is supposed to be exciting, but that is perpetrated by the central characters and presented in a morally positive light. In contrast to those who reason through things, talk things over, and see nuances and shades of gray in the world, the true heroes are those who are willing to be incredibly violent on the spur of the moment and really “get things done” in an enjoyable way. To provide motivation for these good guys--to “prove” that the violence they do makes them good--the bad guys commit violence, in a bloody spiral leading up to the eventual climactic showing of superior violence on the part of the good guy.

Bruce Willis’ clips are less instructive in this regard from a quantity standpoint, but more so in a sexual way. Involved in chasing down a child molester, Bruce Willis bashes a couple lookouts over the head, then approaches the child molester himself. In the presence of the 9-year-old girl he has just saved, he luxuriantly has a standoff with the child molester, then shoots the man in the ear, the hand, and at last the genitals, drawing out the imposition of power in a lengthy foreplay.

The attention to genitals and a sexual overtone to the scenes is present throughout. In a later encounter with the same child molester he previously shot in the genitals, Bruce Willis finds that the man has undergone extensive scientific treatment in order to grow his genitals back so that he can sire an heir for his children. What does Bruce do? Well, he reaches down under the man’s pants and manually tears off his testicles at the most exciting point in their combat, then straddles him and beats him furiously until, weak with effort, he has at last finished.

Mickey Rourke’s character, a big, burly “bear,” handcuffs Elijah Wood’s character, a slim, neat boy with a tidy “bowl” style haircut and round glasses, to himself at the beginning of their passion together. Then, he holds Elijah Wood down and proceeds to tie off his veins so that he can saw off his limbs one by one, keeping Wood alive during the torture. And then, the climax: Mickey Rourke leans back, smoking a post-coital cigarette and staring at Wood’s mutilated body, as he calls a dog over to feed on the ends of Wood’s severed remains.

The violence done by the good guys and bad guys is very much the same in these stories. Elijah Wood’s character cuts off women’s limbs, eats their flesh and then mounts their heads on the wall. To punish him, Mickey Rourke cuts off Wood’s limbs, entices a dog to feed on his flesh, and then carries his head off as a trophy to show to another character (with whom he then similarly engages in violent pseudo-coitus).

Paedophilia next. Bruce Willis shoots off the man’s genitals to save a nine-year-old girl from him. As Willis takes out the guy’s flunkies, he dictates a monologue to the camera about how much of a sicko the guy is, and how much Willis has to rescue the girl he has kidnapped. Over and over again, Willis reminds the viewer that she is nine years old. In this scene, her age is no simple factoid, and it is not enough that the moviegoer just remember it. Rather, it is repeated ad infinitum, like lewd descriptions in an erotic story: age as emphasis, age as arousal. Once Willis has shot off the evil man’s genitals and completed the designated “fight scene,” the (nine-year-old!) girl visits him in the hospital, confessing with tremulous eyes that she “loves him,” will always love him, and giving him a slow kiss on the cheek.

For reasons vaguely related to the plot, Willis ends up in jail for the crime of--you guessed it--kidnapping and sexually molesting a nine year old girl. Although he is, according to the movie, innocent. He is abandoned by his wife and all the rest of society, but the girl (nine years old!) writes him letters for eight years of prison. We are reminded repeatedly that it is eight long years. When Willis gets out, he goes to find the girl (who was nine years old!). She is an exotic dancer. He repeats to himself ad infinitum this time that she is “nineteen.” “This nineteen year old girl,” etc. until you’re sick of the reminder.

Now, how “nine” and “eight” add up to “nineteen,” I fail to see. Perhaps my math is bad; perhaps the movie was just directed confusingly. Or perhaps they’re purposefully trying to avoid stigmatization by the veiled hint that she is only seventeen. Regardless, they run off together on another adventure. She still loves him; she comes onto him, and he holds monologues in his head where he tries to restrain himself from going after a “nineteen year old dancer.” He reminds her--and the audience--that he is old enough to be her grandfather. And that she’s nineteen. Don’t forget that!

Nineteen (or seventeen, as the case may be) is not wandering into paedophile territory. The point, however, of harping on the age--and of Willis and the girl, played in her later years by Jessica Alba, is to arouse through association with the nine-year-old character portrayed in the first Willis sketch. That is why it was so important for the writer to hammer it home to such a degree in both of the skits involving that character. Bruce Willis runs a constant monologue with himself whereby he is worthless and vile for being tempted by this beautiful, fetching nine-year-old, nineteen-year-old, seventeen-year-old, it-doesn’t-really-matter-she’s-young sexual being that he wants badly. His wife and life drop out of the picture, and ultimately, he shoots himself with the gun to “save” Jessica Alba’s character from retaliation from the father of the guy whose testicles he has mauled twice. For his last monologue, he reminds the viewer that he, an old man, is dying so that a young, beautiful girl can live. Touching and honorable in and of itself, but nonetheless indicative.

The creator of these stories has a low sense of self-worth. Lacking a sense of confidence or worthwhileness, his expressions of how to get things done are violent because with direct violence, “the proof is in the pudding.” By engaging in violence so freely and with such affinity, you can demonstrate power, which you secretly fear you are lacking. As with the schoolyard bully, the expression of violence is necessary to shield yourself from an exterior world you fear because of the emptiness and lack of worth you perceive inside yourself.

Because of this sense of unworthiness, the creator of these stories is unable to conceive of sex in a way separate from violence. Sexual arousal is a constant part of life, but the creator of these stories is unable to acknowledge his own sexual arousal except when partaking in an activity (violence) that shields him from his own private demons. Thus, the characters have sex while they have violence. Josh Hartnett kisses, loves, and murders the woman in the red dress on the balcony. Mickey Rourke and Elijah Wood get handcuffed together while one gets off on maiming the other.

Bruce Willis constantly tells himself how unworthy he is of Jessica Alba because of his age, his status of being a dumb cop while she is an attractive dancer, and oh, did I mention his age as compared to hers? He can’t get enough of how “unworthy” he is, but she wants him anyway. This is the monologue that the creator of Sin City has with himself: unworthiness, coupled with the secret fantasy that the attractive and worthy will like him anyway. (Those who have read Brave New World may recall the same fantasy recalled there, of being an unlikeable, unattractive little toad-man who schemes and hates, and who has fantasies of being “patted” by the attractive female lead in the book.)

At the beginning of his segment, Mickey Rourke is favored with the company of the prostitute Goldie. He did not buy her; his monstrism of face is so bad that, according to him on camera, “he can’t even buy a girl.” He figures out later that Goldie only pretended to want him for protection, because he was big. He decides that she picked him up in that bar because she was scared, and looking for the “biggest, ugliest guy” she could find. Then, she dies in his bed, but he didn’t do it, so the movie says. Mickey Rourke’s entire mission to kill and maim is driven by desire to avenge Goldie “because she was nice to me.” The viewer is regularly reminded how Mickey Rourke is unwanted and unlikeable because of his condition (facial misshape), as in the Bruce Willis segment (age). But don’t worry: he will manifest violence to make up for her having sex with him that one night, and that will balance out the equation of his unworthiness and avenge her.

Misogony, ah, misogony. Here I will be laughed at, because Bruce Willis and Mickey Rourke both repeatedly condemn the mistreatment of women, and fight to avenge them.

The classic pattern of Sin City is that the heroes condemn the villians for something, then do it themselves. Bruce Willis condemns the child molestor for wanting the nine-year-old (she’s nine years old!) girl, then wants her himself. Mickey Rourke condemns Elijah Wood for his vile tortures, then tortures Wood himself. And the centerpiece characters in the story vocally and loudly condemn the abuse of women, then abuse women themselves.

Mickey Rourke, on his crusade to avenge Goldie (it was wrong to kill a woman) is helped out by Goldie’s sister. Rourke tells the camera that it really gets him angry when someone hits a woman. A few scenes later, Goldie’s sister is coming forward, asking to be allowed to kill Elijah Wood’s character for the killing Wood perpetrated against Goldie. But Rourke can’t have that; oh no, Wood has been captured for the purpose of Rourke’s torture. So Rourke punches Goldie’s sister and knocks her out, then tells her that it is for her own good, after which he goes on to get off on torturing Wood.

Clive Owen begins his own shot by saving his girlfriend from her abusive ex. He expresses his own violence by plunging the abusive ex-boyfriend’s head into the toilet, where we are treated to Frank Miller’s own coveted shivambu scene of the boyfriend throwing up urine. After Clive Owen has nobly protected his girl, he realizes that the abusive ex-boyfriend and his similarly abusive friends will be heading to oldtown, where they might hurt the prostitutes living there. So, he goes to protect them. Once there, he gets into an argument with a prostitute, and when she won’t see reason, he slaps her and knocks her down. Standing firm until she gets back to her feet, he wins her onscreen kiss and undying love because he showed how tough he was.

Saying misogyny, of course, is not to say that the creator has any better view of men in general, or even of himself. It’s just one particular lens through which he fears the world. The fear of women is even more than the fear of men, though. That is why the exotic, revealingly-dressed prostitutes of old-town parade around with heavy weaponry: women are at once desirable sex objects, yet capable of causing great damage. And nowhere within there do they have an actual character, any more than does the fat, female judge who ignorantly sentences Mickey Rourke to the chair. The real thing the creator of Sin City fears from women is that they may reject him. His own lack of self-worth and confidence makes him view women as terrible valkyries that you must hit, abuse, and then kill for in order to have any right to temporarily restrain yourself from ravishing them.

Sin City is quite the mental petri dish for its creator. The heroes and villians alike are all essentially facets of the creator’s character, conscious and subconscious. The creator’s own uncertainty about himself, his body and his sexuality, is what causes the split into hero/villian. Am I good? Am I evil? Am I interested in nine-year-old girls? Am I right to want to torture people--is it righteous justice?--or am I wrong, and is it a disgusting perversion that makes me worthy of torture and death? Perhaps this is why so many of the scenes end in the death of the main character. The longest vignettes--Bruce Willis’ and Mickey Rourke’s--end with Bruce Willis shooting himself in the head, and with Mickey Rourke getting electrocuted. Both happily and deservedly, because they accomplished their violent, tortuous objective of getting even with those who harmed women.

Wonderful art. Interesting violence. The rare hint of social commentary by titling a character “rich” or “godly” or a “Senator.” An intriguing play of smokes and mirrors that give an insight into a very sad, very fearful mind. (And, a ghastly look at the way so many other fearful minds lacking in confidence find that sort of entertainment fulfilling, novel, and worthwhile.)

In the background of every scene, I can almost see Frank Miller curled up in the fetal position in the corner of a dank, dripping dungeon, shot in black and white footage. He can see angels and demons flying around, at once hurting him and protecting him, but they change their masks every second. How he would like to figure out which is which. How he wants to ask a beautiful woman, a seductive child, a handsome and powerful man, to help him, but he is so afraid that they wouldn’t love him back that he can’t quite close his hand around anything but a pencil. Scrawl the pictures, shred the pictures. Swallow the tears away.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Clean water has no value! And is easy to come by!

Here, Mr. Wolff suggests that water and air are valueless in terms of exchange, because they're so easy and cheap to come by. Response follows:

It is quite thoroughly, terribly American to state that water is easy to come by such that it doesn't have a price.

This one would quote Coleridge, but it's too painful. And in case anyone else didn't notice it, "clean" (i.e., real) air is also not readily available. Does this one really need to provide links about water quality in Africa? Georgia? Poor America?

What an awful, ignorant fantasy. Yet, without that, how would one justify an arcane overexploration of the esoteric philosophical inanity that lurks within the well-heeled thoughts of the western university, solvers of all the world's problems since the 19th century? Everyone has clean water and air, so we can ignore those things and focus only on LIBOR rates! You sad, sheltered richies.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Whites on drugs

White kids abuse drugs more than black kids.

It's a good thing the first black president is addressing these issues.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Obama, oh, Obama!

Reposted from September 2008 to provide an on-site link for Stage Fourth.

Obama is not a man, but is a living god. He can do no wrong. He belches change and vomits purple roses with healing properties plus twelve. When he scratches himself, hungry children are fed. When he adjusts his tie, rainbows appear over Madagascar. Everything that he has done that is wrong was not actually wrong but was in fact a clever ruse designed to confuse his enemies and win him even more votes. Those who do not understand this do not understand politics.

When Obama bombs Iran, it will be different than if anyone else did it. The people there will be happy to accept his munitions. They will greet us as liberators and put up a giant statue of Obama on top of each one of their buildings. Yes, each and every one. Some of the buildings will not be able to support the weight, but Obama will personally support each one with his mighty hand. Dismembered Persians will all come back to life, and Obama will sing holy songs with them in a non-denominational way. They will try to give us their oil, but Obama will graciously refuse. He will then click his heels and return to the emerald city.

When Bush sends a bajillion dollars to Iraq, he is wasteful and stupid. When Obama does it, he is wise and political. Obama never compromises on his principles except when his principles are compromise. He can speak the secret language of canines, and his nationwide network of dog spies has reported to him that the voters were lying to pollsters, and in fact they secretly wanted Obama to vote for telecom immunity. They all told their dogs this after they got off the phone with the pollsters, and their dogs reported to Obama. This is how Obama knew that it was good politically to vote for telecom immunity. He only accepted telecom money to lull the companies into complacency. Any day now the hammer will fall on them.

The people of Afghanistan eagerly await Obama’s escalation of the war. Many Afghanis are Taliban, and the innocent ones are happy to leap into the meat grinder as long as the Taliban go with them. When the war is over, Obama will walk barefoot across the Pacific Ocean and sort out all the body parts. Obama’s close personal friend the Lord Jesus (who refuses to visit Reverend Wright’s church these days) will assist him in putting all the innocent people back together again.

Obama’s mercenaries are all nicer than other mercenaries. All private security contractors know this. They await only Obama’s election to put their safeties on and begin handing out flowers and fuzzy teddy bears. Sometimes, they worry that Obama will not be elected, and they will have to continue gunning down people in cars. It is our patriotic duty to elect Obama and help them lead happier lives. This is why Obama has promised to keep mercenaries in Iraq. Who else would hand out the flowers and teddy bears if they had to go home? A fuzzy teddy bear factory in Mississippi needs these contracts to create new jobs. Obama will do it all in one swoop.

Obama drinks wastewater and urinates refined petroleum. He will solve the energy crisis with three visits to the urinal. This is why he does not waste time giving details of energy policy. If things grow too hot, he will make a phone call to the sun and it will become cooler. The sun will feel giddy afterwards.

Stage Fourth

Or the stageless stage.

Succeeding three prior stages discussed in American Awareness.
The first rank [in Jeet Kune Do] is a Blank circle, which signifies original freedom. The second rank is green and white in the form of the yin yang symbol with two curved arrows around it. The third is purple and white, the fourth is gray and white, the fifth is red and white and the sixth is gold and white. The seventh is red and gold, which is our school's emblem, and the eight rank, which is the highest, is a blank circle, the return to the beginning stage. In other words, all previous rank certificates are useful for cleaning up messes. Bruce Lee
A quick review: Stage First is the narrative of American exceptionalism (which applies, with different plug-in terms, to any absolute exceptionalism, be it Anglo-American, western, eastern, northern, southern, sex-based, et cetera). Discarded once one attains the realization that some wars are unnecessary, and some people are taking advantage of others. Stage Second is the American neoliberal narrative, where American exceptionalism, and its wars, repressions and financial theft continues alongside the use of terms like "diversity," "feminism," "humanitarian intervention," "democracy," "pragmatism," et cetera. Discarded once one realizes that death by any other name smells as foul. And theft, and rape, and starvation, and lack of doctor visits--detail ad nauseam as required.

Stage Third, representing (in a traditional western ladder analogy) the highest advancement, perceives nation-states as puppets in the hand of supranational financial elites, who utilize a vast array of social, military and economic controls to maintain parasitic extraction over the rest of the world to their own benefit. This "stage," for the purposes of the already-flogged stage terminology, is currently being reached by many Anglo-Americans who have realized that Barack Obama was a product sold by international finance, not a crusader for hope and change (TM).

Others realized it at different times: when Bill Clinton starved to death a million Iraqi children and scattered Kosovo with depleted uranium; when Harry Truman used his atomic bomb to vaporize Korean and American POWs and lightspring knows how many little Japanese kids; when John Kennedy was shot for shoving Operation Northwoods back up the respective asses of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (if the term rings no bells, do follow the link. That operation is now so on-the-record that it's generally impossible for the average citizen to process in full). (Hell, when the Reagan administration found out that Christian nuns were being gang raped and murdered in El Salvador, and laughingly dismissed them as sluts without consequence, one would've thought that the Christian fundamentalist vote would've abandoned the Republican party--but Americans don't roll that way.)

Stage Third, though, which is well exemplified by Arthur Silber and Chris Floyd, as well as plenty of "Occupy Wall Street" participants and onlookers, has a massive fundamental flaw. Namely, it assumes that the global financial elite are benefited by their actions.

They aren't. Yes, as this one once said, the said elites can afford to "...buy islands, commission thereupon colossal cotton-candy sculptures in the Easter Island style, then light them on fire and pay an astronaut to take pictures of them from space." But, though fun, confectionery historical revision is not worth the price of being a global elite.

Yes, elites have it "better," in the sense that they can ride around in nice cars, take private jets places, meet/influence people, have a reduced chance of being collateral damage in a Terminator strike, see the doctor, sleep in, and eat good food. However, they only have one lifetime in which to do these things. They have to sleep; they pass through infancy; they get old; they spend some portion of life on the toilet; they stub their toes. There is only so much enjoyment that they can pack into the remaining time within that one hundred years, and moreover, the process of hoarding and becoming responsible for protecting a treasure hoard causes escalating levels of anxiety and erratic behavior.

Non-elites, of course, in the struggle to put food on the table and not die or lose their families to the street, end up with stress also, but of a more natural "survive" kind. The insane oversurvival of elites doesn't lead to happiness, but to manic pressure to accumulate more, protect what is already there, and stop anyone else from trying to get just as much. This is why the newly rich often OD, or why established elites spend their lives frantically trying to rape the souls out of the young.

Elites learn to polish their manners in public; they have to, as they always have had to, which is why Victorian nobles were so fanatical about place settings, and why Miss Manners, the wealthy heiress and wife of a well-connected elite ambassador, spends her life wringing "civil" (don't rock my yacht) behavior out of the masses. Smaug's inner madness isn't fun, even if it would be cool (and only fair) to try on a few of his rings.

Allowing elites to accumulate obscene amounts of "wealth" is harmful to everyone (read: opportunity cost; law of diminishing marginal utility; anything Jesus or Buddha purportedly said), but a theory that bases the cause of human ills on wicked elites benefiting themselves is in error.

What the elites are trying to pursue with their massive wealth, helped on consciously or subconsciously by all of us, is eternal death--the bad kind of death, where instead of one shell decaying while the soul returns to the spring, only to be recycled again, the sick ghostlight flickers out forever, eternally bound to an undying frame. Right now, death is openly pursued in a number of ways. Firstly, elites support war and crush new life with, in addition to the aforementioned war, its associates starvation, social segregation and brutal labor. That one (war/financial exploitation) is relatively easy to see, but the second gets a little more advanced. Elites used to use family lines alone, and hereditary titling (whee! patriarchs!) to attempt an immortality of purpose, but they've evolved to the use of imaginary immortal entities, such as business structures, trusts, and charitable foundations. The nuances of these goodies will be (and have been) broken down in the Tax Theft series, but here in brief, the idea behind an undying business, trust or charity, whether justified through economy, family, or "the welfare of others," is:

Despite my obscene wealth, I may someday die. However, the essence of me will not die. It will persist forever on this planet and never change. My own temporal agendas will forever be locked up in the hands of this illusory entity, which future generations will not be permitted to dissemble and renew. Instead, this entity shall carry on my will, parceling out resources to the living in exchange for servitude.

Lightspring loses--life, humanity, and the universe of change lose all the resources that the elite has tied up.

In time, science grows advanced enough to allow elites to literally survive forever. An individual human entity will be able, without conjuring up the social belief in "nobility" or "charitable organizations," to purchase an undying shell in which to reside always. One mind, one soul, its human desires forever trapped in an unbreakable, spent hourglass.

Like the bound family in Natalie Babbit's brilliant Tuck Everlasting, or some sad immortal in an Asimov short, the horror of everdeath will only strike the elites once they're actually there. Falling forever down a hole full of spinning grandfather clocks, never to strike bottom, never to escape. How reassuring it will seem to them, when they load their souls into the indestructible computers, whose power generation will come from the blood of those still truly living--and how empty their eternal desires will be, once they can finally eat ketchup for every meal and realize they just don't want anymore, no matter how much they re-load iwantketchup.exe.

This one's read of one way the story could go in Everwas, but the real version will be much more chilling. Chilling, incidentally, being the adjective that long ago living souls learned to associate with the undead: those who do not die, because they must insist upon passing "themselves" on in the same form, never changing, never again joining the rest of their kind, of life, in the everflowing stream.

In Stage Fourth, or more importantly, in one of an infinite nonset of ways to (*cough* actually) live, pity the elites. Yes, their blighted excesses deserve hearty curses, re-worked "policy," pitchforks and torches, a healthy (yet ironic!) dose of Robespierre, and more than a few trips to Inferno, but they're still our suffering kin. Holding them in thrall as god-kings of brilliant industry, wise investing and hard work, or reviling them as god-tyrants stealing paradise from the rest of us, only spins the hamster wheel. Antilife is the only real "enemy."

Damn the richies; I want a Porsche, too!

*cough*

They're only playing their own, slightly-better-costumed role in this horror story of cogito ergo sum's by-product of uncontrolled consciousness leads to self-fear leads to desire to separate from changing lifeworld leads to immortal foreverdeath. Live with passion; introduce a little chaos.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Money Laundering

World's First Billion Dollar Home

Money is laundering. When the cost of something is discussed only in units of impersonal currency, said discussion is divorced of context, and left largely meaningless.

For example, consider the "home" in the link referenced in this post, the actual cost of which approaches $2 billion. Imagine a mere $100 million invested in a fund for, say, the children in Africa. Imagine that this fund, after deducting administration expenses (and reinvestment to keep up with inflation), had a very conservative income of only $5 million a year. Call it the African Children's Fund. This $5 million comes in every year, year after year, for as long as our market system lasts.

Now, imagine that this fund spent this conservative $5 million a year on $500 a year/job training, $1K a year/child rice, $1K a year/child medical care. That's $2.5K per year, which may be a gross overestimate in price given the continent, but let's go with it anyway.

Simple math, here: $5 million/year income and $2.5K a child means that 2,000 children in Africa could eat, receive medical care, and receive job training. Every year. Forever.

The numbers would be a lot bigger if that $100 million went to them right away, but through investment, the gift could keep on giving. Every year, another 2,000 people would have job training; would be healthy; would have plenty to eat. And this would come at no additional cost after that first gift. These would be children who would starve to death; who would join militias in search of food; who would die of tuberculosis for want of a 50 cent vaccine. And that could all be stopped forever for a mere $100 million, with the gift that keeps on giving.

Of course, this example could seem more powerful than rescuing a mere 2,000 African children if all the money were spent up front. But we're going for sustainability, here.

So, if the Ambani family could settle for a mere $1.9 billion home, they could accomplish great things for those 2,000 people a year in Africa.

Let's not stop at Africa, though. Let's say that, being Indians, the Ambani family decided to create such a fund in India for $200 million--twice the amount they invested in Africa. 4,000 Indian children could eat, see doctors and have productive jobs, instead of starving. Add that to the 2,000 African kids, and you have 6,000. And remember: this lasts forever, as the trust fund keeps kicking out income.

Meanwhile, those people are paying taxes, becoming stable members of their communities, etc.

If the Ambani family could settle for a mere $1.7 billion home, they could accomplish great things for those 6,000 people. Every year. Forever.

Maybe they're feeling extra generous. They decide to fund perpetual hope for another 4,000 kids in China. How about another 2,000 in South America? They're at $1.4 billion on their house. Maybe they'd decide to invest $100 million in renewable energy. Maybe another $100 million to give huge raises, in perpetuity via trust fund, to all of their impoverished employees. $1.1 billion. Maybe they build an extravagant, world-class, tourist-drawing art and architecture museum open to all Indian citizens. Provide free beer and peanuts at all movies shown in Dehli--forever. Build an entire network of modern schools and medical stations across their entire country. Down to $1 billion flat.

If they could settle for just $1 billion for their house, they could do all of the above.

So, here's a better article: Ambani Family Runs Rampant: starves 12,000 children and their heirs; ravages solar plant; scraps museum plans; closes down national museum; reduces employee benefits substantially; cancels popular "free beer at bollywood" program; levels India's schools and hospitals.

All of these things are true, because by taking $2 billion and spending it in a certain way, all its other possibilities are removed. It is within the power of the Ambani family to settle for a mere $1 billion home, or even--gasp--one that costs only $100 million, or $50 million, or--I'm about to choke, but here it is--only $10 million.

That is what money is: it is opportunity; it is tallies of influence. When massed together, it has all the potential to direct people to do things like build schools and hospitals, feed children, educate and uplift, and even brew and drink beer. But when we decide that one person or one group has a disproportionate amount of money, they can scuttle all money's other possibilities in the pursuit of their own hideously avaricious ends.

Money can only do this because of its laundering effect. There is no way--no conceivable way with any technology we now have--that the Ambani family, either individually or with every one of them that ever lived, would be able to actually construct a $2 billion skyscraper. It takes the effort of many, many more people, skilled in many different things, to approach such a project. If all their efforts were added up and valued, it would be a total of creativity, labor, passion and struggle that would obviously not be attributable to the Ambani family.

Yet, while there is no realistic way the Ambani family could amass all that effort, because of the social construction of money, we allow them to direct it. Because the output of labor and creativity has become faceless paper, such horrendous, deadly mismanagement of our species' resources is glorified and celebrated.

Yes, yes, division of labor enhances what we can all accomplish together (and thoughts on how that justifies the disproportionate rewards of those who benefit most from the system shall be postponed). But even considering for division of labor, there is still no way. This is far too extravagant for even a stretched rationality to justify.

Just like the net worth of Bill Gates or Warren Buffet: even allowing that they are a great deal "better" than people with less money, and therefore deserve much more in the way of resources, there is no way to straight-face justify the amount of money they have in relation to your average joe. Their skill at gambling, be it with the odds of a company's success or the odds of someone else's product's success, is not so prodigiously more worthwhile to the rest of us, or the planet, to justify them having, say, 10,000,000,000.00 times more value than said average joe.

We accept this all much easier because of the faceless character of money. By equating effort and output with money, we allow "effort" and "output" to be consolidated in unnatural ways, so that one person can eventually end up with more "output" than even a thousand people could realistically produce. One person can own more houses than they could ever live in; one person can own more food than they could ever eat.

Money is necessary for "ownership" to be sustained in modern society. Just as mobsters "launder" money to disassociate their wealth with illegal activity, large-scale owners launder effort and creativity to dissociate their wealth with the people who actually created it. And when they spend it, and talk about "dollar amounts," their atrocious lavishness is laundered a second time, as their misuse of resources becomes merely "spending money" rather than what it actually is: taking resources in extreme disproportion to the rest of humanity (/the world).

The total dollar amount wasted is only illustrative; it does not matter in substance. A king of old Egypt might have spent 90% of his population's effort on building himself a massive palace or tomb, while his people starved or languished in slavery, filth and need. That is now common practice, except that instead of viewing it as slavery, which we now view as wrong, we view it as the "decision to spend money in a certain way" (if we even bother viewing it or contextualizing it at all).

When one person builds a third palace and another starves, we may subconsciously rationalize the difference as one of the "worth" of the person, but most no longer challenge the assumption that such behavior is right. It is "right," to most, simply because it is "freedom" of the one to spend his or her money as s/he wishes.

Because the choice is actually made at a deeper level, it is often ignored, or perceived as not about choice at all. Of course, who wouldn't build a palace if they could? Everyone likes living somewhere nicer. The choice is made at the stage of allocation of money; once we decided to allow such a system, the inevitabilities of one person "spending" on a redundant palace while thousands of children starve/languish is merely a symptom.

As in the issue of tax theft, though, because the crime has been designed by the racketeer aristocrats to be less visible, it is harder for most people to perceive that they have been had. Threaten a man and then take his money, and he will feel robbed. Institute a tax system for everyone, then give yourself an exemption, and the same man will pay his taxes and feel less robbed (even if he is still upset and complains). Whereas most people might violently resist the theft, or plot against you to stop it the next time, most people will be lulled by the tax scheme into paying up.

Similarly, call a man a slave, and tell him you own him, and order him to labor to build you palaces, and he will hate you, and may violently revolt. However, if you call him a free worker, and tell him you will pay him to build a palace, he will perform the same labor in the same conditions, and thank his lucky stars that he has a job and that he is not one of the others you did not select, who are starving.

In the meantime, the situation hasn't really changed, except that most of the aristocracy dropped their titles of nobility for those of republican governments.

Martin Luther King realized, after American blacks had won the right to sit at lunch counters, that the freedom to sit there did not matter much when you could not afford the lunch. He challenged war, and they shot him to death and then glorified him, and we may all now congratulate ourselves at the freedom to sit at as many counters as we wish, while the "money" system continues to tally up its skewed results and order output and effort in as wicked a way as it used to under its old guise.

Continued in Money Laundering, Part 2.

Traffic Reports

Ragnarist Symptoms, Part 3 (Part 2 here.)

Traffic and Crime Reports

Similarly to the prediction of weather, the ragnarist demands more and more traffic reports and crime reports, and gains a growing obsession with the "up-to-date-ness" of news items as the disease grows. The fearful mind wants to know the instant a car "accident" has happened, based on the belief that they will become closer and closer to 100% informed about something that they lack the capacity to predict. It is the same with crime reports and up to date "news flashes," because the more often those things happen, the more often they offer false comfort, with the reassuring belief that any new event that occurs in the random world has been explained and accounted for by the authorities. Clamped down on like the false sense of control that comes from harshly disciplining your own mind.

Media stations that favor authoritarian host model political shows will be more often riddled with traffic and weather reports, for this reason.

Sex and Drones, Part 3 (Disalienation)

Continuing from Part 2.

Disalienation

Freedom from the self-alienation of either model comes in abandoning the various pretensions of individuality, disconnectedness, and sexual discretion imposed by antilife social models (e.g., "left and right," "male and female," "mine and yours," et cetera). Living within one or any multiples of the sets of illusions, while easy and popular, leads to a painful conflict between the subconscious--which recognizes the self and body--and the conscious, which must constantly rationalize the illusory self within the world, and fit all experiences into an artificial framework. Victims of repressed sexual or childhood abuse can have their repressions teased out by deep therapy, even by a mental health professional who lives within the rest of the illusions, but almost all of the non-popular, unrecognized phobias, such as fear of the sexual self or fear of the fluid world, are neither treated nor recognized.

Disalienation: first comes acknowledgement of the individual's role as a living organism--presumably one bipedal and mammalian, constantly swapping cells with the surrounding environment, and only marginally in "control" of the ever-shifting "consciousness" identified as "me" or "I."

Alongside that comes the separate identification of soul and shell. While the human frame is animated by and bound to, in intimate ways, its associated form, the body does not define the whole of the soul, nor the soul the body. Human eats apple; apple becomes part of human; human defecates; human grows. However united in the pursuit of the world's tapestry, the apple and the human are not "one" in the sense that western philosophy generally sees one. So it is for the body and "its" higher mental processes.

The standard graph of neural patterns does not fully capture consciousness, and a complete said graph, which would be consciousness, is yet only achievable through a connection between lightspring and shell. Ergo, the accurate perception of one's form as a "human" or a "woman" or "man" will come, first, in the understanding that it the ghost occupies a hunk of meat (one day, perhaps synthetics; another day, perhaps more fluid energy structures, et cetera), and that hunk of meat is not fully in the control of the individual. Funny-bones tingle, skin ages, sexual desires and hunger come and go, et cetera.

While "male" and "female" are not the clear-line divides that standard memes would prefer, there are, nonetheless, massively abundant sets of physical-frame correspondence that guide, with great accuracy, toward an accurate prediction of any given human shell. For example, in the same way that a chimpanzee is, pound for pound, far stronger and faster than a human, a "male" human frame will be stronger than a female. By virtue of embryonic steroid infusion, the male's reduced health and accelerated strength and speed are, rather, a given. While patriarchy would attribute this to superiority, or draw from it assumptions of command, and feminism would attack it as a social construct, both neglect an embracing of the respective qualities of different types of (innumerably different, yet understandable in general form) shells. Radical feminists who mock creationism find a curious hypocrisy in their neglect of scientific data regarding testosterone quantities.

Conversely, in addition to the lack of womb, males will never be as nurturing to children. Mentally, and empathically, their ghosts can develop the appropriate feelings, but their shells will never response the same--males do not receive, after a natural birth, a flood of epinephrine, norepinephrine, oxytocin and prolactin (this very rush is why antilife seeks to turn birth into a process of unconscious, drugged medical sterility; to inhibit chaotic chemical love between mother and infant). Males do not respond physically to crying babies, as do nursing mothers (and other females), and males, despite all of the efforts of the wicked among them, have never (and will never) develop an appropriate chemical or robotic substitute for mother's milk and the intense bonding of the nursing process (The infant who doesn't get drawn more fully into the shell through mother's milk, skin and gaze, never develops as close a connection to her or his own shell, and, ergo, feels more disconnected throughout life [or instead channels the feeling into something nastier]).

"Mammals" are, not surprisingly, defined in their lives largely by their ability to reproduce, then connect to and nurture offspring through the transfer of milk (the subconscious motivation for the Bible's manna from Heaven).

Herein is the "downside" to masculinity. The testosterone injections received by the infant designated for life as a male equip for strength, but detach the male from the closest physical connection to the process. The mental stuff is still there, as the soul goes, but the physical wonder is only experienced by the male in infancy (if, nowadays, lucky enough to be so blessed with the mammalian, rather than chemical, transfer of love and life). Aside from that, the male shell is a disposable drone, meant to fight, protect, inseminate, and die. In the common parlance, this is why "guys like boobies"--because they miss nursing as children (or wish they could've, if they never got to play out that instinct) and because they want to create other little sparks of light who can then nurse, grow and do the same. Circle of life.

The right drug cocktail in the embryo not only develops the testes and penis, but drives the resulting entity toward sex in expansive ways. Fight; compete; accumulate; shelter; protect; kill; display bravado; look for an empty spot of meaning; build something glorious that will last when you pass. The standard drug cocktail leads to desire to bear and nurture, worries about biological clocks, which drapes and blankets and sleepers will the baby like, that end table is too sharp, I don't want to end up alone, I just need something to love, I want it to be the right person. Mixes in-between or off the charts leads to other exciting combinations: the scattering stardust that will, in a century or eons, spawn its own offshoot life, if the mad scientists don't bottle it all into deathly beakers first.

Within the numerical majority, "human" ghosts find themselves trapped in one of the two most common shell-types, "female" or "male," and subject to the resulting drug effects. Hating the resultant side effects, or pretending that they don't affect one's shell, might be currently popular, but rejects the car one is driving for life. Believe in it, accept it, and move on with what you have. There's absolutely no room in there for being rude to someone, or assigning different mandatory social roles

but when a meme of acceptance becomes internalized such that an individual actually begins to not see differentiation between people (e.g., everyone is inhabiting identical shells, and the only differences are in our upbringing; being stronger means we get to make all the rules), the soul cries for the loss of its empathy with its attached shell. Disalienation from the shell's sexual drug and organ balance leads to unhealthy (and unfair, to the object) fixations, such as the fetishizing of tamed, trapped "pet" animals as substitutes for children (also seen in older humans who are left alone or who abandon relationships with younger humans), abuse or rape as substitutes for masculine ranging/insemination, or self-destruction by substance or suicide as an expression of constant denial of shell characteristics.

Catechisms in closing

Male drug/organ range: This shell is disposable. It evolved to pass genetic material onto other humans so that they could reproduce, and to fight, kill and die to give my species or social group advantages over others, so that others could survive when this one died. Despite this, this one has a soul, and "I" am more than the sum of "my" parts. I will never be able to control what sexual or violent thoughts I have, but I can control which of those my body acts upon. I can love and contribute to children, families and the entire world, but will never bear within my body that which goes on. That is all right, because love, life and spirit is what endures, not flesh, so I need not construct expensive tombs, buildings, or illusory entities to satisfy myself that the things I believe in will again be felt and discovered. "I" will pass to the spring and others will again be.

I do not need to go out of my way or fabricate reasons to destroy and kill to prove that I have the power to satisfy my mission to protect those weaker than I. I can embrace myself and the purposes for which my body was built, and use strength in a positive fashion in a world that no longer needs me to sacrifice myself killing mammoths and cougars.

Female drug/organ range: This shell is disposable. It evolved to receive, store and nurture genetic material into other humans, and then to be available to them in infancy so that they could feed, grow, and learn how to be adults who could sustain themselves and pass new mixes and mutations on to others. This body would harm itself in the passing, giving life to others and being used by them, without which all would perish and fail to develop. Despite this, this one has a soul, and "I" am more than the sum of "my" design and parts. I will probably never be as physically strong or as abstractly directed as those who were juiced up to rove and disseminate, and cannot in good conscience bear offspring, then delegate their lives and responsible growth and development to chemicals or those who did not bear them and are not drugged to love, nurture and know them in a way no one ever can. My way must always be the final say, including over whether or not they are sustained by, and come out of, my body to begin with.

The world includes others who are designed for different tasks, and if I find them amusing, I should join them in them. However, I should not insist that others hold themselves back for me while simultaneously treating me as though I were also designed for those tasks.

Transcendently-sexual/transsexual drug/organ range: Pick and choose the drives and tendencies of your shell from the above. Lacking (so far!) a mainstream repressive model to fall into, the freedom and exploration of non-capital-crime homosexuality suffers more from traditionalist blacklisting (i.e., gay is wicked!) than from a supra-imposed role. Analyzing the "gay is wicked" repression will be forthcoming. Within each respective community(ies), repressive memes do exist, but aside from PC behavior and token gay commentators, those haven't yet worked their way enough into neoliberal pop culture to be repressive enough on a national scale. Contact for non-standard catechisms and analysis.

(As homosexuality, bisexuality and transsexuality blend into cultural acceptance, their diversity will be countered by antilife models attempting to impose rigid mores upon them. It will seem crazy and ironic as the movement starts, but a hundred years later, will be the new standard from which anyone who deviates will be radical, imprudent, and suffering from the disease of "thinking about this too much is silly and unhealthy.")

Lightspring embrace us, every one.

Sex and Drones, Part 2

Succeeding Part 1.

A general narrative structure of entrench[able/ed] patterns of human division follows:

Because of [1 - ancient ill], and a long, verified record of [2 - past ills], [3 - unit-type of constructed sexual dichotomy] and those who respect them must reorganize human societies to ensure that "[4 - experience]" becomes a vital force of governance. To do this, we must remove all vestiges of [5 - past ills variant] from our culture, and ensure that those who are [6 - boogeyman] have their influence entirely marginalized, then removed.

Choose one for each:

1 - Eve's sin in the garden, patriarchy, or the ascendance of corrupt capital
2 - masculine blindness and social domination, feminine weakness and inability to effectively govern, or
3 - communists, women or men
4 - masculine reason and strength, worker equality or the female experience
5 - patriarchal authority, female meddling or capitalism
6 - counterrevolutionary, chauvinist pigs or shrieking harridans

The end result of the formula with the right set of options can be patriarchy, feminism, or Animal Farm. This structure's inherent flaw, which plays out in different ways depending on the latter three results, is, in part, the reliance on "removing all vestiges of" any particular aspect of the living world, but moreover, the concept of marginalization in the first place. (Even a more advanced criticism of "world elites" bears this flaw--see forthcoming "Stage Fourth.")

As patriarchy (exclusionary male-ism) alters its spots into feminism (exclusionary matriarchy), "females may not bring their menstruating selves into men's clubs and temples" becomes "men may not tell sexual jokes to one another in an office where they may be eavesdropped upon by women." Patently ridiculous religious invective against women becomes patently ridiculous politically-correct speech limitations. At first, these policies seem helpful, because they draw justification from a past history that "everyone knows" (women are the inheritors of a weak/stupid/slutty tradition, or men are the inheritors of a dominating overculture), and they facially target only easily-hateworthy minorities within each classified group (token ineffectual matriarchal leader, or red-state wife-beater who sexually harrasses the secretary by the water cooler). Either conclusion is flawed, because of course, male leaders regularly (99%?) stink, and so do, regularly (99%?) female bosses.

And each theory, ultimately, is harmful in the bad-kind-of deadly way. The divisiveness of attributing flaws to species, sexual, racial, religious or cultural heritage harms each side of the imaginary fence. Alienating the "individual" from her/his species alienates the individual from not only those he or she might rely upon, but upon her/himself, as well.

Disalienation, or the main thrust of this series, to follow in Sex and Drones, Part 3.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Sex and Drones, Part 1

The evil of fearful consciousness leads to the repression of sexuality, including the establishment and classification of fixed (black v. white-type dichotomy) sexes, sexualities, and associated social roles. Social stratification and authority glorification, on the road to a cold forever, are most effectively accomplished by severing entities from the sensation of flowing life, ergo sex and sexuality.

Humans are, essentially, "female." Human embryos are initially female, e.g., they are provided with the throwback tools of life creation, namely the coding to produce eggs, wombs, placenta, milk, et cetera, along with the associated chemical cocktails for infant bonding and group cohesion. As human brains evolved larger for a survival advantage, female human hip structures spread, creating for a load-bearing and distance-traveling inefficiency, yet allowing for the species to continue mental development.

Expendable, shorter-lived "male" humans developed through the intermix of steroid compounds with the female embryo, equipping the resultant entities, like so much tumbleweed, for traveling, physical contest, and the production and cultivation of comparatively limitless genetic material with which to fertilize the original humans and assist in reproduction.

Interesting side effects resulted from this advanced sexual division, similar to those found in many other species which include drone "male" disseminators: the steroid compound and travel/contest physical structuring of the males, combined with advanced neural nets, allowed the development of social structures in which male units could physically (with the resultant and associated "mentally" thrown in) dominate the species. Ghosts arising from said neural nets could then perpetuate and justify this structuring, passing on cultural memes of sexual role denial, and its constant bedfellow: classification with a limited number of columns (generally two).

The associated memes here, in the case of humans, are in recent history, "patriarchy," or its successor "feminism." Each meme, from its most minute to fullest expression, relies upon the implicit repression and classification of (generally human) sexuality, with the ultimate (and primarily culturally/individually subconscious) motivation of transforming the sexual entity into an entity detached from sex (ergo, life and the living world).

Patriarchy. Deep patriarchy instills masculine authority based upon strength, roving ability, and affiliated mental processes, including spontaneous spatial dynamics. Patriarchy passes social lineage based on fatherhood, and commands a lack of authority and/or autonomy for women. Its overall flaws are in vesting authority based on strength, particularly in a species so relatively weak compared to Earth's other inhabitants. Patriarchy's social structures tend against greater inherent female mental autonomy, group stability, and offspring connection, tying these concepts to an impossibly detached idea of male lineage.

Negative effects of patriarchy

Sexual repression. Males and females are encouraged to produce viable male heirs, and raise them within a patriarchal caste system, reducing the potential of unions of multi-mate, homosexual, bisexual, transsexual, transrace, transspecies variety, and inhibiting further genetic dispersal, evolutionary mutation and life development. Individual mental desires and self- & world-exploration are stunted; relationships, love, lust and social restructuring are repressed. All human art and expression that would spring from the above are never created.

Masculine cultivation. Males are encouraged to over-cultivate "masculine" qualities to the hypermasculine, exploiting human physical strength and mental/spatial aggressiveness for the purpose of hypercontest, leading to war, slaughter and torture. Qualities deemed "feminine" are downplayed. All of the traditional Anglo-American aspects of femininity are the finest human qualities: nurturing; empathy; forgiveness; sacrifice; peaceful acceptance. Males are discouraged in the expression of the same, as females are discouraged in the expression and development of physical strength and mental/spatial feats. The species and the living world lose the wonders and achievements of "males" who might otherwise have nurtured in new and fantastic ways, and females who might otherwise have explored and developed in new and fantastic ways; social stability comes to rely on violent authoritarian control (war; police; the traditional "state" with its associated masculine rulers under various terms--king, lord, premier, president, rich), rather than shared empathy and peaceful acceptance.

The problems of the expression spill most deeply on children, who are ramrodded into developing one set of hyperlimited pseudo-qualities, and through the mimicry of early cultural learning, may in the majority come to believe that no additional options for thought or behavior are available.

Feminism Deep feminism posits itself as a specific rejection of patriarchy. Its initial stages and most docile expressions suggest it is remedying a social wrong by making the experience of women "important." When light shed thereupon reveals the intrinsic sexism of the theory set, which appears hypocritical, feminism adapts to allow that patriarchy has had a negative effect on men, too, and that men should therefore also be feminist to save themselves. Like patriarchy, feminism demands adherence to the more for a human to be considered to be engaging in acceptable behavior: those who fail to be feminist are blind, ignorant, dangerous, wrong, and responsible for the ills of the past. Like individual patriarchs "granting" women freedom and autonomy, or supporting the right of women to "vote" (or token black friends granting the right to say "nigger") individual feminists grant to subscribers the right to claiming a consciousness of patriarchy, and the state of having transcended it. Everyone not subscribing is, like so many blind goldfish, unable to understand their massive privilege.

Post 1990, feminism works to assimilate/adjust/modernize/replace patriarchy with terms. Patriarchy is now considered neoliberally "wrong," and feminism "good."

Continued in Sex and Drones, Part 2.

Friday, November 4, 2011

IOZ Puppylander response log

(Response to IOZ's brouhaha over one puppylander's suggestion that high school and college differ primarily in terms of socialization.)

In summary of the above, puppylander suggests that having experienced Americana high school as the final stage of formal education leaves one frozen in time, in comparison to those who have experienced "higher" education. Brouhaha ensues as he is accused of being an educational elitist. Puppylander uses the metaphor "immature" to describe the HS-only mindset, which term does contain an inherent value judgment.

Generalized American "high school" is awful; in its own way, perhaps more awful than generalized American college. Both institutions exist to transfer monetized labor from workers toward enforced state educations. In the case of high school, primarily state-run institutions transfer funds toward technology and publishing companies, where the enforcement is mandatory and the marketing so deeply embedded it's rarely questioned. Neoliberal lala-demo-exceptionalist history, useful for docile citizens of all castes, prances alongside state-subsidized remedial math- and science-prep for the next generation of weapons and consumer products designers. The "free" nature of the no-adult-legal-rights holding pens makes it, much like colonialism, a selling point for endless intervention. Those who emerge from it, and who swallow its necessary survival lessons, along with those it implicitly and insidiously teaches, are quite often molded into an unfortunate shape. As "immature," perhaps, as puppylander suggests.

By contrast, college's non-mandatory selling point is a refinement of the adult-legal-rights-possessing in-duh-vidual into an even more productive citizen, with even more resources to cite in support of demo-exceptionalism. The major difference with regards puppylander's point, however, is the socialization aspect. While being an adult in America is much like being a traditionally-raised or -schooled child, in the sense of constrained movement, violent enforcement of atrocious mores, and authority not possibly caring less about pain and misfortune, college teaches increasingly-sophisticated, out-in-the-open repression of horrors, leaving the underlying vulgarity of situation an unpleasant reminder best left in K-12.

That, in a way, is more terrifying than the honest brutality of childhood and inmate-run youth prisons. However, high school (and the rest of K-12) remains, literally, more "immature" than college, in the way that Michele Bachmann is less mature than Barack Obama. Yes, they are both terrible; yes, they are insane, and Obama is likely more dangerous.

This does not mean that Michele Bachmann, or the average product of American high school education, is not also insane and dangerous. Puppylander thereby retains an acceptable point, which could have been better refined to avoid offending the concept of not going to college--but then, that same refinement would be the very mature behavior he suggested college taught. The tragic irony is that he clearly should've paid more attention in PoliSci 412, or better yet, Advanced Trial Advocacy.

In the interest of balancing the scales, and while nonetheless retaining utter contempt for Americana's perfect ivory towers and their resultant Eichmanns, this one will find a value in puppylander's underlying point about post-K-12 socializing. The tempering of intrasocial violence preached to often-newly-christened "legal adults" at college stands in contrast to K-12 violence. Consider, as an extreme anecdotal example, Aaron McKinney. Neoliberal voters and their college are scarier in the long run than neoconservative voters and their high school, but calling a fire hot and dangerous is not, in and of itself, wholly wrong.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

When (Ebenus)

I kill because I want to
Not because I must
To turn the world's hope and light
To bitter ash and dust

I die because I want to
Not because I must
Never watching, always feeling
Myself dissolve to dust

When to die and when to live
Isn't that the question, man?
Ask yourself, not only me
Have I recourse but to flee?
Run before my terrible might
Then finally turn about to fight
To find that I indeed exist
Before you fall, I whisper this
Though now you fall at knifepoint's kiss
When all are dead, none will be missed

E. Cue 2009