I was genuinely surprised to learn that De Maistre, the terrible defender of ancien Europe and monarchy, never doubted the need for reform. He wanted to convene the estates, and address the needs of the commons. But he was so horrified by the attack on all levels of society from the minds and pens of men like St. Just–all committed Rousseauists every one of them– that he decided the revolutionary ideal was a nemesis sent by God to scourge the athiestic nobility.
The guillotines were fed by those who had rushed to welcome every new idea that undermined the old order. Only if I accept a fable about the revolution and ignore the weight of historical fact and experience can I consider it a worker’s revolution or a revolt of the people as better equipped theorists in America and Europe invoked in later centuries.
I hear many invocations of freedom, justice, equality, but precious little informed historical data, as in the lived facts of human experience. The Glorious Revolution birthed many ideas spreading in a firestorm over the world.
The Glorious Revolution also led to the eruption of iconoclasm and the invasion of Ireland. Perhaps these aren’t so bad if you are a Cambridge man, but despite my documented antipathy to the Church, I would never burn down a Catholic sanctuary full of saints and paintings. The response would be that I identify with the elite, that I idolize the lures and vanities of the landed gentry too much to empathize with the people.
I appeal to something set above rationality to say that anyone who can burn a beautiful painting will also burn human beings. A good Protestant makes the best candidate for a sudden uprush of “pagan hysteria”. Just look at what Thatcher got up to in her attic bound existence.
I am heartened that more self proclaimed socialists are turning to the tradition of Luxemburg and Debs which rejected the Bolshevik notion of the vanguard. Millennial would-be radicals would also be well-advised to emulate the sharpness of their forebears rational approach to problems of power and wealth distribution, which means putting the close reading of history at the heart of political action.
It’s no rave, picnic or revival meeting. No American will change anything without taking up the hard work of making more accurate statements about the state we’ve inherited.
It’s a little disconcerting to see how many self-described leftists, including anarchists and anti-police activists, are playing amatuer detective to help the FBI with its business. We can deride the Q followers as fat, ignorant, and evil but one thing they are not is well-organized with clear political demands.
Pretending otherwise might feel awesome while yucking it up online with yr buds, but its not activism, or a viable political movement against the reactionary actions of police nor the impossible stress put on working people during a pandemic. It’s an insane moment when supposed defenders of civil liberties are cheering on mass arrests, no matter how deluded or fanatical the targets.
Left liberals should agitate to charge the Q people with criminal acts, not domestic terror.
I see no reason why this won’t be turned on environmental and labor rights activists when the political winds shift. Millenials seem just as blind to history as those monstrous Boomers. It seems a bit rich to sneer at our wayward elders for failing at radical social change when they were , as the Patti Smith book title put it “just kids”.
Let’s begin with the facts. These are my observations, which if you’ll recall another observer of the cosmos called Isaac Newton also had on occasion. He conceived the theory of gravity in the legendary story of the apple , and I discovered this unique bullying form of kryptonite when I noticed an incontrovertible and well researched fact.
While many of the Hebrew persuasion live in cities full of tall buildings, few are ever seen taking the stairs. Try it, google it, and Occupy the nearest stairwell after blagging your way past the doorman. Don’t bring any guns or weapons, and wash yr junk if you have a penis.
Now observe with careful scrutiny. You may after a while, find that the need to relieve yourself is overwhelming your efforts. Make sure you stand in good range of any security cameras when you do yield to tender nature, and keep one leg slightly crooked. The director is with you all the way. The staff understand your animal functions and won’t disturb you.
You may find yourself wondering–this is also natural–why is it that whenever Jews move into an area the budget for handrails, gymnastic cushions and rubber padding that fits over the rim of a hardy, strong set of stairs often reaches record levels across the centuries?
They best observers know that if it isn’t slingshots made from t-shirts and rockets caked in goat shit, the constant enemy of the toughest Jew is found all over every modern city.
Golly, they might not have a Tesla or Irving Babbitt in any ethnically-accurate stable of geniuses, but. I guarantee it was an inner-city Jewish peanut butter vendor who, in his spare time, invented the escalator.
I sent cake to my gran after not sending anything for the holidays, 2 weeks late and I told her to eat cake. One of the delights of old age must be treasuring a hungover and wholly inadequate phone call from the family over fancy efforts to outdo a lifetime of gifts.
Claro, quien es?
for a second i was
a blink in another man’s dream
At dominos we share a dream that we want to make into a reality– and that is a world made entirely from pizza toppings.
We were the generation that achieved personal and cozy space travel, which we used with prompt courage to stare at the sun till our eyes joined the rest of our fluid selves.
When it comes to people with advanced engineering degrees filling the pages of online pulp fiction zines with their grand and studied takes on genre , I think it reflects broader shifts in general culture to the way indie rock and some genres of dance music shifted in the last 15 -10 years to become a playground for leisured gentry.
Now that doesn’t describe every independent artist but its more and more clear to me that relying on a revived independent record industry is a futile illusion.
Both open mics and the boutique style used to give the support needed to build an audience and income streams over time , but they didn’t help many people escape the open mic circuit. That’s a circumstance far more crushing than staying a season in your folks’ basement. No matter what the post-vaccine world looks like, the “pay-to-play” structure needs to go.
Any future model that is effective will need to find its origin in the artist’s own industry, from a practice that doesn’t stop either in the streets, booking a gig or in the studio. A revived union for creative artists should be on everyone’s minds.
This won’t come about because of any unique genius, but from a simple starting point– it starts with those of us who don’t want to hustle for scraps at a logging yard because we’re slow and have slippy fingers.
When it comes to people with advanced degrees making grand statements about the potential cultures of the world’s future:
Why would atom smashing be the way to create more culture, rather than just more frantic movement, and what’s the reward of governing with little culture?
Isn’t all over when you slink off to recline in the orbital cruiser, while below you the vagrants are clawing at
your windowless pile?
Some men just want to play goblin metal and release trained mongooses into the crowd for an encore.
Is watching the ruins from above better than shooting meth into yr toes while orbiting earth? Ask a tech genius. At least drugs gave the disrupters something internal to focus on for the 30+ years it took to leapfrog from the acid 60’s to Uber.
Jon Kabat Zinfindel said with full sincerity that mindful speedballs can cure corona but don’t let that leak into the body politic.
As we believe in the “all men created with equal rights” part of liberal values–
Profiling Muslims in the United States to prevent terrorist attacks is the same twisted logic as stopping and frisking every mustache sporting Midwest male devoted to guzzling brews and worshipping the riffs of Black Sabbath.
I felt like I’d been punched in the gut after discovering that Jeffrey Dahmer shared my taste in music and recreational chemicals before and during his one man reign of atrocity. Wouldn’t a widespread profile and aggressive policy be in order to avert another drink sodden spree of necrophile serial murders? What are we saying about ourselves when we take it easy when faced with imminent beheading?
Many theocratic critics of modern America say there is no reverence left in our once fair nation. But it’s a simple fact that drinking cheap beer and head banging to “Sabotage” followed by “Dehumanizer” is an unprotected religion of the Midwest (and other once active industrial regions of the USA). I just hope this is brought before the proper Homeland officials before our right to worship is compromised by panic driven policy.
Marcel Duchamp left the field of art for the battleground of the chess game—he never left art behind, though he’d aver that his artistic interest had only shifted to the chessboard—under an increasing despair with pictorial art’s ability to respond to an early 20th century life undergoing explosive break throughs of economic process with little regard for rooted ways of family or the aesthetic ‘vision of paintings created under horse and buggy paced life—he responded with a non-response, of pushing aside feeling in art for the realm of pure concepts embedded in clever titles and japes at the viewer—though he never truly left painting, his detached ennui that regard art making as just another game among many—“where every object lay in its exact position as an assemblage of nothing more than what it appeared to be. Flat, dead numbness” …
“Afraid to merge. Disappear here…”
“People are afraid to merge” is a recurrent phrase echoed in the mind of the main character in Less Than Zero. It could also apply to the AI’s that haunt the main characters of William Gibson’s first novel Neuromancer.
One of the only characters sports a full arsenal of chip enhanced weaponry without staggering under its weight—rather like Huysmans’s[i] aristocrat gilding a turtle’s shell with rare stones till it cannot move, the Panther Moderns render themselves inhuman as Clive Barker’s Cenobites under their invisibility aiding camo-suits and implants spiking from neck-ports. Molly’s warrior ethic binds her to protecting her Daimyo, extended to a charge such as former hacker Case early on in their meeting.
He relies on her non-chalant courage and ruthlessness as much as she leans on his hacking skills. Later in the Straylight chapter, his reckless infiltration of the Tessier Ashpool palazzo with a head full of illegal stimulants shows some change of character from the washed up deadbeat at the start of the book. One notable difference from the screen adaptations arguably inspired by Neuromancer is the role of violent action in the novel. There are no grand shoot-em ups like the OK Corral in fetish wear which formed the Matrix’s climactic moment in the public’s cinematic memory. Molly checks Case’s hooligan antics when he’s strung out on speed pills in “Chiba”, hiding in a corridor from nameless stalkers with a “shuriken” clutched in his sweaty palms. The (illicit and illegal) cyborg enhancements lend her the speed and skill to use hand to hand means of dealing with enemies, making her more akin to Robert E Howard’s saber wielding “Valeria” from that writer’s penultimate story “Red Nails” than the damaged goods b-girl of standard noir plots.
When they are parted from each other during the run-up to the combined digital/physical infiltration of old money stronghold Villa Straylight on AI orders, he is forced to rely on other skills, being too drug riddled and physically weak to fend off an attacker. His worst adversary turns out not to be the “Turing police” intent on stopping him from releasing the rogue military AI’s safety checks, but the AI itself which is “wearing” his memories like characters in a dream to manipulate him. He must rely on his own “magic” of info hacking which resembles the P.I techniques of Raymond Chandler novels more than any recognizable hacking sourced from the world of cyber-crime and commerce in “real life”.
[i] Joris Karl Huysmans’ Against Nature, written in the 1890s gave voice to the decadent aristocrat who leaves the visible life of Paris to shut himself in a manor house where he spends the rest of the novel exhausting the possibilities of an “artificial life” to replace nature, before escaping to a Catholic monastery. He is desperate in his need for anything that gives the jolt of new sensation to galvanize him from a slough of ennui. The Villa Straylight of Neuromancer exists as a space faring equivalent to Huysmans aristos.
While Rod Dreher frets about kink and deviancy becoming ‘mandatory’ in the workplace, I have to wonder– would it be so bad? Aside from the question of German influence in our workplace , wouldn’t it clarify confused animosities if we got it out in the open? Would it mean binding my boss at the gift store with actual rules? He’d no longer be allowed to force a humiliating bow tie and apron on his employees after they speak the safe word? A frank and explicit list of exact reasons and terms for playing ‘human garden’ in the basement during late night shift work? Let’s consider the benefits before we begin strapping on body armor and smashing the windows of dildo stores.
I deleted a post that might have seemed a little mentally unstable (or just plain bitchy). I’ve also pinpointed what has often bothered me about creative writing classes, and maybe the entire direction of education that my more successful peers benefited ( I guess?) from. Who fucking cares about Me? Why do I need to write a memoir like I’m Mr. Nice? I don’t even like the Red Hot Chilli Peps but I’ll probably read Flea’s memoir cuz he’s lived an interesting life.
I’m more interested in living an interesting life myself, but sometimes I do sit down and write actual content. I guess I’m a bit disappointed at how I’ve veered closer to personal venting than anything, and from now on I’ll only post things that are intended to be funny or informative. I basically escaped from Special Ed years ago and got ahold of some books, and they haven’t locked me in a concrete square yet. Until that happens I’ll keep sharing whatever stories or bits pop into my head and shoot out through my fingers into this wacky contraption.