Sunday, December 26, 2021

Eleven People Who Didn't Suck In 2021

 Let's face it, dearest motherfuckers, this year sucked. From start to finish, 2021 was a hard year for hope. The Pandemic that never ends never ended. To the surprise of only the gullible, Joe Biden turned out to be every bit as violently corrupt and tragically inept as the orange circus clown he was foolishly voted in to replace. And Appalachia got December tornadoes this year instead of a white Christmas. Santa can take this year of coal and shove it up his fat white ass. At least 2020 had the riots to keep us warm. Pretty much the only thing even mildly cathartic to come out of this year was Biden's fumbled retreat from the imperial graveyard of Afghanistan and even that came with a war crime that no one paid a dime for.

It was a harsh year personally for your humble genderfuck muckraker as well. Like many pathologically uncooperative Americans, my mental health just wasn't built to withstand another year of plague and pestilence. I spent so much time and energy just trying to keep my head above the waves that I barely had anything left to write with. When I wasn't choking down Elvis-loads of mind-bending mood stabilizers, I was fighting off the writer's block they all too often caused while struggling to please the increasingly delicate sensibilities of my left-wing audience. Truth be told, I spent more time than I'm comfortable admitting just trying to come up with reasons not to hurt myself and all too often came up short. But even in the pits of existential despair, there exists hope, and even in a year as all fired wretched as 2021, there were at least a few people who inspired me to drop the razor blade. A dozen people who miraculously didn't suck. About eleven to be exact, and this is the time of year to celebrate them, just before we put a .22 to 2021's head and put it out of our misery once and for all.

Jo FirestoneA few years ago, Joe Pera Talks with You came out of the woods of Michigan's Upper Peninsula and somehow miraculously became one the best shows on television over the course of three seasons on Adult Swim with nothing but the pure weapons-grade, unironic sincerity of a dovish choir teacher embracing the simple magic of small-town life in tumultuous times. But in its third season it was Joe's pint-sized survivalist girlfriend, the appropriately named Sarah Conner, played by co-writer and executive producer Jo Firestone, who really got to me. As the world in 2021 continued to spin out of control, Sarah's survivalism slowly began to melt into the realm of mental illness, as she struggled to cope with a society determined to return to normal in deeply abnormal times. Jo, who's own stand-up work is notorious for its raw vulnerability, does a brilliant job of capturing just how lonely it can be to be a woman on the political fringe and just how heroic the unironically sincere normies in our lives can be just by sticking around. Someday, I know I'll find a soft-spoken lesbian to build me a cabin in the woods.

Scott Horton- Scott Horton hates me. He made that pretty painfully clear when he refused to publish my unconventional gonzo prose on his brilliant site,, for being "bad journalism." Needless to say, the barrage of F-bombs in my response to this slur probably didn't exactly endear me to the man either. But in 2021 it's never been clearer that that son of a bitch is one of the good guys. After Afghanistan ended precisely the way he predicted it would twenty years ago, before it even began, Scott wasn't stingy about handing out the proverbial crow to all the mainstream fuck-wads who labeled him a whack-job for warning them, whether it was on his podcast, The Scott Horton Show, or his refreshingly post-partisan End the Damn Wars Movement. But the finest moment of Scott's bittersweet victory lap was undeniably the now infamous debate he held with the neocon architect of forever war, Bill Kristol, on Reason TV, which will go down in history as the most delightfully savage beatdown a pacifist has ever given a warmonger. Thank you for that moment of pure sadistic joy, you peacemongering savage. Now get a grip and publish my shit, goddamn you.

Andrew Coffee IV- Back in 2017, the sheriff's department of Indian County, Florida, launched a disastrous no-knock raid on the residence of one Black ex-con named Andrew Coffee IV, looking for his father on drug charges. After coming in blasting without so much as identifying themselves, Andrew did what any sane American would under these circumstances and shot the motherfuckers. Tragically, upon injuring one of the swine, the pigs fired back, murdering Andrew's girlfriend, Alteria Woods, in the process and then charged Andrew not just with three counts of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, but with the second-degree murder of the girlfriend they killed when he attempted to defend her. Usually, in this racist police state we call America, this is where the story ends. 

But by some kind of early Christmas miracle in 2021 a Jury sided with common sense to find Andrew Coffee IV not guilty by reason of self-defense. But this is far bigger than one Black life mattering for a change. If a Black man in a redneck county can legally stand his ground against a police death squad, any of us can, meaning the pigs now have a 9mm reason to think twice before they play cowboy on someone else's private property. Sadly, for Andrew and America for that matter, he was still found guilty of being a felon practicing his Second Amendment rights and is now looking down the barrel of a thirty-year sentence from a vengeful court system. One step forward, thirty steps back.

Stella Morris- Few people suffered more this year than Julian Assange. Facing life in supermax hell after 11 brutal years of captivity for the high crime of being a goddamn journalist would give even a supine soul like Joe Pera a stroke. If it isn't agonizingly clear by now that the United States is using the corrupt international legal system to slowly murder Assange the way they did Milosevic, then you might be legally blind. The once resilient rebel with a cause has been reduced to a crumbling shell of his former glory, but his fiancĂ© and the mother of his two young sons, Stella Morris, bravely keeps the fire alive and faces down the hoard of sycophantic tabloid scum who dare to call themselves journalists with the steely resolve of a provoked lioness. Her fight isn't just a fight for justice, it's a fight for love, and goddammit do we need that this year. Let's fight with her. We can't afford to let these fuckers win.

Magnus Panvidya- My friend Magnus shocked the self-righteous left to its very core this year when the unapologetic Boogaloo Boi came on Jimmy Dore's podcast and revealed that his supposedly right-wing extremist movement is actually an armed anti-racist militia reborn on the streets in the wake of the police lynching of George Floyd from the embryo of a tongue in cheek meme about a second American Revolution. Magnus has gone all in on bottom unity, starting the revolutionary Unity Coalition to bring together groups of rabble rousers as seemingly far-flung as Libertarians and Antifa, and providing a much-needed armed contingent to Scott Horton's End the Damn Wars rally. You will still find left-wing imbeciles willing to slur social justice militiamen like Magnus as white supremacists, but in 2021 I've never met a white hetero cis male more committed to stomping out the flames of institutional white supremacy than Magnus Panvidya and I'll gladly die on that hill any day of the goddamn week. Bottom unity or death.

Abby Martin- During a Q & A at the COP26 gala in Glasgow (You know, one of those globalist get togethers where the 1% of big government and big business gather to be photographed caring a lot about the environment they casually ravage) Democratic Speaker for life Nancy Pelosi was looking to virtue signal with another softball question from her adoring press, so she announced, "I need a woman" and goddammit if they didn't find her one. Abby Martin, the renegade journalist behind The Empire Files, lit Nancy up like a Christmas tree with the motherfucker of all gotcha journalism sucker punches. In so many words, she demanded to know where the hell the millionaire congresswoman got off pretending to give a shit about the environment when she approved a deficit quadrupling budget for planet earth's greatest polluters in the Pentagon. Nancy and company stammered a bit as they shit themselves on live television before Pelosi came up with the most ludicrous excuse to duck further inquiry since the-dog-at-my-homework by announcing that they couldn't take any more questions because, "They need to clean the room. I didn't even know they did that..." Sometimes it's the little moments of humiliation that make life worth clinging to. Thank you, Abby.

Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker & Lucy Dacus- This year, the soundtrack to my life in doom times comprised largely of three brilliant albums from the three brilliant members of the short lived but legendary indie rock band boygenius who also happen to be three best friends and three women who refuse to compete for the fickle attention of the chauvinistic record industry. The first, Phoebe Bridger's lush and sarcastic apocalyptic serenade, Punisher, actually came out at the tail end of 2020 but made waves big enough in 2021 for those twits at the Grammy's to give her a few nominations to save their non-existent street cred. Then came Julien Baker, my personal favorite of the three, who updated her naked sober Christian folk rock with the reverb drenched agnostic gospel of Little Oblivions in which she bravely mined her own relapse for a heartbreaking tale of redemption for a whole country in recovery. But it was Lucy Dacus who really stole the show with Home Video, a slide show time capsule of 11 stories about all the awful people who made her young life worth remembering.

In a year dangerously low on hope for heartbroken Queer women like myself, it was three breaths of fresh air in the mineshaft of 2021 to hear three brilliant heartbroken Queer women like Phoebe, Julien and Lucy humbly and eloquently admit that they're fucked up too and maybe that's OK. To quote Lucy's "Please Stay", a song that may have literally saved my life this year, "begin, be done, break a vow, make a new one, call me if you need a friend, or never speak to me again, but please stay." 

Erick & Jade Jordan- When I said that 2021 was a hard year for hope, I meant that 2021 was a hard year for bottom unity. I have devoted my short career as a muckraking armchair revolutionary fighting to bring the fringes of this country together to rip out the dark heart at the center of its evil empire. Whether you're Queer or straight, Black or white, left or right, it is the people on top that enslave us all and only a united front of the freaks on the bottom can overthrow them. This romantic notion of stateless post-partisan solidarity really took a beating this year and nothing beat it worse than Kyle Rittenhouse: a bougie, wannabe cop, militia imposter, who came to Kenosha looking for action and ended up blowing holes in more than just people. That case tore everything I spent years slaving over to shreds, pitting allies against each other in what the media turned into a senseless culture war courtroom drama that made my brain want to vomit.

But it was in the wake of that sensationalized circus that I found a shard of hope in Erick and Jade Jordan, a Black father-daughter team armed with AR-15's who were invited to protect the protests following Rittenhouse's acquittal from police state reprisals. Erick, 50, and Jade, only 16, were in Kenosha themselves the night of the bloodbath, defending a local restaurant, and like every other armed person there that night but Kyle, they managed not to shoot anybody by standing their ground at their posts and leaving the protesters be. They brought that same level-headed sincerity to defending many of those same protesters after the trial, showing a world gone mad with division what real solidarity looks like. There are quite simply too many rich gangsters out there killing poor people. We can't afford to be killing each other too. If we're ever going to survive another year of this imperial collapse, we're going to need to stick together to keep warm.

Increase the peace, dearest motherfuckers. But keep swinging until we bring this motherfucker down. Together. Together. Together.

Peace, Love & Solidarity- Nicky/CH

Sunday, December 19, 2021

A Queer Anarcho-Christmas Carol

 The following is the Gospel according to Nicky Reid, a ranting, genderfuck, lesbian, Christopagan anarchist from the 21st Century. Like all religious propaganda, it is loosely based on a hot mess of new age folklore, revisionist history, pharmacological hallucinations and psychotic episodes. Take it with a grain of any spice you like, but please remember that it is no less fantastic or plausible than your own preferred Christmas fairytales. Let's face it, we're all swinging in the dark here folks....

Once upon a time, in a land far far away, there lived a teenage hermaphrodite by the name of Mary whom God chose to be the virgin mother of the greatest revolutionary who would ever live due to the beauty of her unique chromosomal make-up. Upon making herself pregnant to save mankind from its own bullshit, Mary and her husband, a super chill carpenter with rumored connections to old money named Joseph, left their hick town of Nazareth and traveled to Joseph's familial home of Bethlehem in the suburbs of Jerusalem for tax dodge reasons. Unable to snag a cheap motel room, the two ended up giving birth to Jesus Christ, king of Queers, in a barn surrounded by animals and migrant farmworkers. King Herod, the local Roman puppet caudillo, caught wind from a few travelling groupies of the birth of a child who would one day threaten his fragile grip on power and did what petty tyrants do best, he flipped the fuck out and started killing babies. After being tipped off about Herod's homicidal hissy fit, Mary, Joseph and the wee baby Jesus chose to go underground in Egypt.

A few decades later, Jesus Christ reemerged on the spiritual scene in ancient Palestine and immediately started shaking shit up. He travelled from town to town, skipping the local temples and country clubs in favor of the seediest dives he could find where he hung down with the freaks and ghouls, your prostitutes, your lepers, your hustlers, your Queers and your eunuchs, not so he could speak down to them and tell them to change their wicked ways, but to embrace them with open arms and inform them that they were the true chosen people of God. Society had fucked up and these outlaws weren't a part of it. Jesus railed against the beautiful people, condemning the colonialist Roman Empire and the temples that did it's bidding and preached that man required no church or state to be in harmony with God.

Unlike most rabbis of his era, Jesus rejected traditional marriage and chose instead to embrace a polyamorous relationship with a dozen or so of his closest followers who he called Disciples, mostly hunky dudes who he picked up at the docks, but also an ex-hooker and noted foot fetishist named Mary Magdelene who would become his most devoted confidante. When they weren't raising hell in the local villages and vandalizing the temples, Jesus' crew would hang out in the surrounding deserts where they would trip on shrooms and watch their messiah perform crazy magic tricks. Naturally, as Jesus built up a devoted cult following, the temples and imperial Roman overlords whom he condemned for being the fraudulent tyrants they were, caught wind of the freaky young renegade and conspired with one of his disgruntled groupies to have him killed. After a brief show trial, Jesus was given the death penalty for being a dangerous heretic and crucified on the cross.

That should have been the end of it, but a diehard crew of Jesus' closest followers kept his message alive in stateless underground communes where everything was shared and nudism, psychedelic rituals and free love was practiced openly. Slowly their numbers grew. At first, the Romans persecuted these spiritual outlaws violently, having them stoned to death and fed to the lions. But as the Roman Empire's own imperial cult began to lose popularity with their jaded citizenry and Gnostic mystery religions from the Orient became all the rage, Emperor Constantine committed the worst atrocity the world would ever know and hijacked Christianity's cult of peace, love and understanding and perverted it to save the very empire that murdered its founder and namesake.

With help from the self-proclaimed Church Fathers, the Roman Empire buried Jesus' revolutionary gospels in a leather-bound hunk of violent, bigoted bullshit called the Bible and the good name of Christ was used in vain to promote everything he despised. First it was used to slaughter Europe's rural heathens who were guilty of the same crimes as Christ, practicing a communal lifestyle that didn't rely on the state for its relationship with a higher power. Eventually Christianity became a tool for international imperialism used to justify everything from the Crusades to the Inquisition to the genocidal colonization of Africa and the New World. Even after Rome fell, this mutated creed was passed on from one brutal empire to the next until it finally reached the empire that would span the entirety of the globe and become the Antichrist known as America.

But the Queer word of Christ did not die with the birth of the Church. True Christian outlaws fought on valiantly throughout the ages. Righteous temple shaking motherfuckers like Francis of Assisi, the genderqueer Joan of Arc, Oscar Wilde, William Blake, Leo Tolstoy, Dorothy Day, Peter Maurin, Jacques Ellul, Ammon Hennacy, Ivan Illich and the Berrigan Brothers. They would lead peasant revolts, expose the thieves who run the Church and sabotage the empire's wars. A pair of revolutionary theologians, in the 16th and 17th Century respectively, named Thomas Muntzer and Gerrard Winstanely of the Diggers would give birth to what Pierre-Joseph Proudhon would later call anarchism, a rejection of all earthly hierarchy as blasphemy against mankind and a call to live as Christ did, in Queer harmony with the universe sometimes referred to as God.

We here Christians living in the belly of the Antichrist in America, find ourselves this Christmas in the year of our lord Twenty-Twenty-One at a great crossroads. We live in the Ebenezer Scrooge era of the American Empire, confronted by three ghosts. The Ghost of Christmas Past, which confronts us with the heinous deeds that our empire has done in the name of Christ, from Manifest Destiny to the War on Terror. The Ghost of Christmas Present, which confronts us with a great fearsome mirror showing us the reflection of a greedy, fallen people, praying to false idols in stadium churches and voting booths, and ethnically cleansing Christ's ancestral home of Palestine on the orders of Evangelical Zionists. And finally, the Ghost of Christmas Future, which confronts us with the inevitable results of our imperial deviation from Christ's true path; climate change, famine, nuclear holocaust, the annihilation of all that God has bestowed upon us to cherish and keep holy.

But it's not too late, dearest motherfuckers. These visions are but the shadows of things that may be, not the shadows of things that will be. It is Christmas morn and that means that it's not too late. There is still time. If America truly is a Christian nation, then America truly is a Queer anarchist nation and where better to begin a revolution to take back our spiritual destiny and crush the Evil Empire which murdered the wild faggot who set us free from our own bullshit, not with guns and bombs and violence, well, maybe a little bit of that, but mostly with peace and love and secession and agorism. We, the freaks and ghouls, the chosen people, can defeat the Antichrist by doing little more than rejecting his poison fruit of statism and growing a new stateless kingdom of God in the shell of the old. 

Be merry, Queer Christian soldiers, for it is Christmas and we have a whole world to win!

Peace, Love & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack: Carols that influence this post

*  Happy Xmas (War Is Over) by The Plastic Ono Band

*  1979 by the Smashing Pumpkins

*  Walk On the Wild Side by Lou Reed

*  In Case You're Feeling Sinister by Belle & Sebastian

*  Life On Mars by David Bowie

*  Rejoice by Julien Baker

*  Raw Power by the Stooges

*  Come As You Are by Nirvana

*  Lola by the Raincoats

*  The Ballad of Jim Jones by the Brian Jonestown Massacre

*  Androgynous by the Replacements

*  Celebrity Skin by Hole

*  (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding by Elvis Costello 

Sunday, December 12, 2021

The School Shooting as Blowback from Authoritarianism

 It happens over and over again. Another day, another shooting. Another day, another nightmare. Another sleepy small-town community put on the map for all the most horrifying of reasons. Another school shattered by unspeakable violence. Another lonely pissed off kid who needed a gun just to be heard. Another four young lives extinguished, guilty of nothing but standing in his way. Another host of adults who couldn't be bothered to give a shit until blood stained their spotless floors. Another national tragedy for our vaunted tabloids in the Fourth Estate to shamelessly sensationalize and mine for ratings gold while simultaneously virtue signaling over the carnage. 

But the sickest thing about the latest school shooting to rock the nation is just how eerily normal it all feels. Four dead and seven wounded at a high school in tiny Oxford, Michigan, just feels like another Monday in 2021. But for the vultures of cable news, it's something far worse. It's just another juicy headline to gorge themselves on, and they've been circling with their cameras drawn to catch every traumatizing minute long before those bodies were even cold. Weeks later, and they're still circling. It happens over and over again, and it's just going to keep happening.

The anchors of cable news pout and put on a good show about how tragic this all is to them. They'll even bring up their own children in a crass attempt to humanize their craven scavenging, but those parasites live for this kind of thing. Exploiting dead (mostly)white kids is one of the few times when they get to plausibly pretend to be actual journalists anymore, covering something that actually fucking happened for a change. For them every tragedy is just another opportunity for spectacle, and it doesn't take them very long to turn that spectacle into their favorite game, the blame game. Sure, a bunch of innocent kids are dead but who gives a fuck about that when there are fingers to point. After all, the most important question to answer here is who do we have to blame?

Do we blame mental illness or the shooters shitbird parents? Boring! We can do better than that. Let's blame heavy metal music. Let's blame Quintin Tarantino. Let's blame violent video games. Let's blame antidepressants. Let's blame anything fun or anything that makes adolescence in this shell of a decaying empire even mildly tolerable. But most of all, let's blame guns. Let's blame the shit out of guns. That's every news creep opportunist's and Democratic presidential hopeful's favorite scapegoat, and in spite of all the sensationalist rhetoric and breathless hyperbole, it's actually not a target without merit for once. Even an unapologetic lefty gun nut like me can begrudgingly admit that the ready access to firearms in this country is certainly a factor in tragedies like these, but a closer look at the statistics adds up to a much more complicated narrative than guns-bad-guns-kill. 

Violent crime statistics in this country are notoriously subjective and inconclusive, especially considering that we rely mostly on the less than reputable word of local police and the federal government to track them. A couple things that we do know for sure however is that, with the exception of the last few years of COVID induced poverty and upheaval, violent crime of almost any kind, including gun violence, has been steadily declining for the last forty years, regardless of shifting gun laws. The only exception to this rule has been the uniquely American pastime of the mass shooting which just keeps on climbing. School shootings are particularly vexing considering that they increased exponentially during the Clinton era Assault Weapons Ban and exploded right around the time that the press turned Columbine into a three-ring circus, and that's the thing that the media blame game always seems to conveniently overlook.

The rise in school shootings shows very little correlation with gun control, but it's meteoric trajectory perfectly mirrors the rise of the 24/7 news cycle, where a once rare class of novel tragedies became transformed into a week of around the clock coverage that gave any lonely and ignored disaffected youth a platform to finally be heard, loud and clear. But this still fails to explain why these kids are so desperate for undivided attention that they're willing to destroy themselves and so many others just to get it. The real question that everyone should be asking isn't who do we blame but what are these children trying to tell us? I believe in order to understand this, the root cause of this violent and uniquely American phenomenon, we have to look no further than the actual target of these attacks, another culprit that always seems to escape the media's blame game, the schools themselves. 

The compulsory school system in this country, be it public or parochial, is not designed to educate. It is designed to subjugate and control through a strict regimen of fear, shame, repetition and competition. Children are forced to compete against their peers in a contest to obey orders. They are afforded the rights of prisoners at the mercy of poorly trained adult authority figures who are awarded complete control over every aspect of their charges 12-year sentence, from when they get to eat to whether they get to use the bathroom. Those who conform, excel to please. Individuals who cannot or simply will not follow orders are frequently labeled as disabled or mentally ill and are further isolated from their peers in remedial programs. And the system is getting worse.

With the rise of standardized testing and tightly scripted lesson plans, more and more kids are falling between the cracks while the few decent teachers who fail to fulfill their roles as dictators are being bullied themselves and run out of an increasingly militant system where critical thinking is discouraged and much needed free time is disappearing. This is what often separates America's educational prison camps from those in other countries with equal disdain for youth rights. By 2006, nearly 40% of schools in this country had either eliminated recess or considered doing so, a trend that experts have linked to increasing rates of anger, aggression and severe behavior. Even in school systems as martial and competitive as Japan's, children are given enough free time between morning and afternoon classes to walk home and have lunch with their families. In American schools there is no time to breath and nowhere to hide and those who crack beneath the pressure have to look no further than their own history books for lessons on constructive problem solving. 

Timothy McVeigh, another highly intelligent but ruthlessly bullied pupil, summed up the lessons learned from American history books when he excused his own act of terrorism by pointing to the common American narrative for our nation's terrorist bombing of Hiroshima. He was simply committing an act of heinous violence against the federal government in order to achieve a mythical greater peace. These are the lessons taught to our children in our history books, that constant warfare is a legitimate mode of problem solving. These same lessons are regurgitated verbatim by the blame game playing vultures of the mainstream media, who gush over how presidential their leaders are when they bomb first and ask questions later. 

In a society that discourages free thinking and individuality and valorizes the sanctity of state violence, it's really a miracle that more children aren't arming themselves with AR-15's and coming to school dressed like soldiers to settle the score with their tax funded abuse. It's this authoritarian combination of institutionalized bullying and pro-war propaganda that makes children desperate enough to even pick up their parent's firearms in the first place. The biggest tragedy of school shootings is that they are essentially blowback from a system that simply doesn't value children as individuals. It's really little wonder that those who don't murder their classmates often grow up to become successful adults who ignore their own children and vote for leaders who simply bomb schools instead.

I learned these lessons firsthand as an outcast born between genders who had trouble standing in a straight line and following orders. They called me disabled because their books didn't challenge me enough to want to finish them. They called me crazy for preferring my own imaginative dream world to the structured games the other children were encouraged to play on the playground. I grew up feeling stupid and ugly, but I never once considered violence until my teachers began to accuse me of being a monster like Harris and Klebold for failing to fit in. It was only then that my fantasies became consumed with vengeance and violent retribution. I had vivid extended fantasies about being the little girl they wouldn't let me be and skipping off to school in pigtails to burn it to the fucking ground. But after discovering the ideas of wild free thinkers like Mikhail Bakunin, Che Guevara and Edward Abbey, I decided that revenge was letting these bullies off too easy. So, I committed myself to revolution instead. After all, why burn down one school when you can burn down them all?

And this is what we need to save our children from the institutionalized isolation that leads to senseless bloodshed. We need a revolution. We need to start looking at schools the same way the far left looks at other authoritarian institutions like the police and the prison system. We need to encourage our children to rebel and challenge authority. We need to emancipate childhood from the state through unschooling and the creation of mutual aid funded free schools in which students are treated as equals and encouraged to create their own curriculum in an environment where there exists no authority other than that granted by the consent of the governed. If we really want to save our kids, we need to set them free from adult tyranny, and gun control will never achieve that outcome.

Peace, Love & Empathy- Nicky/CH 

Soundtrack: songs that influenced this post

*  The Day After Tomorrow by Phoebe Bridgers

*  Hate My Way by Throwing Muses

*  Zombie by the Cranberries

*  School by Nirvana

*  Get Your Gunn by Marilyn Manson

*  Teenage Whore by Hole

*  Kerosene by Big Black

*  I Found a Reason by the Velvet Underground 

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Suicide of the Elites: It's the End of the World as We Know it (And They Feel Fine)

 It's the end of the world as we know it and the rich feel fine. In fact, those greedy motherfuckers have never seemed better. The ozone layer is evaporating, the oceans are rising, and the plague just keeps on raging, but you would never know it by looking at all the beautiful people in the global power elite. They just keep on shining like diamonds in all their opulence; jet-setting from coast to receding coast, dancing the night away maskless by the light of the not-so-distant wildfires in exclusive galas devoted to saving the very planet they pillaged. Together they shimmer, CEOs, senators, tech giants, generals, movie stars, lobbyists, heads of federal agencies and captains of industry, dressed to the nines in gowns and tuxedos that cost more than your mortgage and your college debts combined. 

Rubbing shoulders, shaking hands and posing for the cameras. They drink and laugh and schmooze, then meet up at even more exclusive and decadent afterparties where they snort their weight in cocaine served up on gilded mirrors by half-naked servants younger than their grandchildren and fuck each other's addled brains out. You would never think in a thousand years that all these beautiful people were in the midst of committing mass suicide and taking the rest of us lowly plebians in flyover country with them, but that's what got them invited to this party in the first place. After all, they only got so sickeningly rich and powerful by destroying the world around them and bringing all its shrinking inhabitants to the brink of the apocalypse. You see, dearest motherfuckers, this revolving door of incestuous big business oligarchs and big government plutocrats are in the doomsday business and in this, the year of their lord Satan, twenty-hundred-and- twenty-one, business is good. It's damn good.

Nobody saw COVID coming. The pandemic seemed to come out of nowhere two February's ago to smash the world beneath its massive tires like a groundhog beneath a goddamn Mack Truck. One day you're bouncing back on the rebound from a decade long mental collapse, preparing to run a walk-in center for your local AIDS resource center and the next- Bam! Your life has been obliterated in a bloody mess by the side of the road and you're reduced to hiding in your house again like the agoraphobic shut-in you worked your fucking ass off to leave behind, popping Ativans like Tic-Tacs and counting the spiders on the walls while you try not to swallow your own tongue. But mentally ill savants like me got off easy, well, at least the ones who didn't blow our fucking brains out or switch from benzos to fentanyl.

This plague that seems to have no end in sight has murdered over 5 million people worldwide and nearly 800,000 and counting in the United States alone, most of them, naturally, have been poor people. It's obliterated the economy, ransacked Main Street and given the police state a license to quadruple in size in the name of public health. But scientists have been warning us frantically for years about the plausibly catastrophic risks of playing God with gain of function research, genetically modifying zoonotic pathogens to make them deadlier and more transmissible to humans so Frankenstein virologists can get rich curing what they caused. 

We've been told repeatedly that this kind of reckless behavior could lead to horrific lab accidents and even global pandemics, and now we have one that just so happened to spring from a city hosting two major labs known to be engaged in that precise kind of research with coronavirus infected bats. The totally sensible theory of an accidental lab leak was given the rank of conspiracy when then President Donald Trump accused China of producing the virus as part of some kind of Bond-villain-esque plot to take over the world with an army of diseased bats or some such nonsense. But this accusation was a bit like blaming the dog for farting when you consider that Trump is the imbecile who lifted the Obama era ban on gain of function research and that it was our government that financed these labs in Wuhan.

The National Institute of Health provided the funding for the Wuhan Institute of Virology and the nearby Wuhan University for Animal Experiments to carry out this research, funneling the money through an increasingly shady looking New York based non-profit called the EcoHealth Alliance, run by a creep named Dr. Peter Daszak. It was none other than the good Doctor Daszak who organized a group of top scientists to write an open letter in The Lancet disparaging the lab leak hypothesis as a crank theory before it could even be properly investigated, less than a month after COVID hit the US. He also served on the World Health Organization joint team that concluded that the lab leak was "extremely unlikely." A conclusion that has since come under question from the WHO itself. Daszak made all these claims without even bothering to reveal that his organization had been involved in since leaked research creating infectious clones of MERS and bat SARS related coronavirus' that even DARPA wouldn't touch.

It should be noted that the EcoHealth Alliance is a multibillion-dollar operation and that people like Dr. Daszak get very rich in the so-called non-profit industrial complex. It should also be noted that EcoHealth's biggest funders aren't the NIH but the State Department and the Pentagon, and that they gainfully employ one Dr. David Franz, formerly Colonel Franz, who served as the commander of Fort Detrick, the American Military's premier biowarfare facility. The same place that anthrax once mysteriously escaped from. That's kind of a lot of fucked up coincidences to overlook and a lot of the people overlooking them have a lot of money riding on the continuation of this sort of reckless research. You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to know which way the wind blows but go ahead and call me a weatherman if that makes you feel safer about the world's top virologists hopping in bed with the same fine folks who brought us Gulf War Syndrome and Agent Orange.

Speaking of homicidal weather, climate change is another disaster that supposedly nobody but a bunch of hippie eggheads saw coming. But now, with the Sahara expanding, the Great Barrier Reef shrinking and the Amazon in flames, even the ghost of dear Alexander Cockburn is calling this beast an apocalypse. People are getting slaughtered across the globe. Wildfires are tearing Western North America six hundred new flaming assholes a second, from Lake Tahoe to Fairbanks, Alaska. Biblical floods are drowning major cities across Western Europe and China, and the Atlantic Ocean is spitting out hurricanes the size of small countries like fucking buzzsaws in a Mortal Kombat game. But somebody did see all this carnage coming, over a decade before the hippie eggheads did. As early as the mid-seventies, none other than Exxon Mobile had a crack task force of top tier scientists looking into the effects of carbon dioxide on the globe. The conclusion of this rigorous and innovative research was essentially identical to today's scientific consensus. 

Exxon Mobile's response to their own irrefutable proof that they were bringing on an apocalypse was to double down and chuck millions into promoting misinformation while they continued their very profitable rape of Mother Earth. But this evolving tragedy cannot be pinned on corporate greed alone. Exxon Mobile may be a death factory, but the Pentagon consumes more petroleum than any multi-national corporation on earth and is the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions and many other toxic pollutants, all just to keep the lights on for the military industrial complex. Yet America's Death Star has been mysteriously granted blanket immunity from every international climate agreement on the books, including the Kyoto Protocall. The reason for such rampant hypocrisy can probably be partially explained by the international hostage crisis created by the only threat to human life greater than climate change.

Nobody seems to see the nuclear holocaust coming. Most Americans have foolishly assumed that we already dodged that bullet with the collapse of communism. As usual, most Americans are dead wrong. The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, set up in 1947 by many of the same great minds who created the atom bomb after they realized what they had done, has the Doomsday Clock set at 100 seconds before midnight, closer to extinction than it has ever been, including during the Cuban Missile Crisis. That's because the Cold War never really ended because the Cold War never really had anything to do communism. 

It had to do with the global hegemony of that Atlantist multinational conglomeration known collectively as the West and preventing Eurasia from ever contesting its total dominance over the globe. This is why NATO continues to lurch ever closer to Russia's borders, this is why Obama, Biden and Trump have all declared total war on China, this is why American battleships continue to provocatively cruise the Black Sea and the Straight of Taiwan, this is why the Pentagon continues to tempt humanity with weapons grade pathogens and toxic army bases, and this is why the US is currently engaged in a trillion-dollar campaign to upgrade and enhance its nuclear arsenal, because the beautiful people want it all baby, and they'll gladly blow the world to kingdom come if they can't have it.

Never in the history of mankind have we ever seen anything like this. Empire's collapse, that's what they do, but this one is threatening to literally take down the whole damn world with it and I don't think they're bluffing. This is the kind of collective madness that only unprecedented levels of greed can bring on and we're running out of ways to contain it. I know what some of you are thinking, that we need a colossal government to solve this colossal crisis, but that's a trap. The people who run the federal government and the UN are the same people who created these apocalyptic catastrophes. Giving them more money and more power will only make them worse. In fact, it already has. The response by world leaders to COVID, climate change and the nuclear threat has been to grant even more funding to the same forces who made them possible. Peter Daszak has never been richer, fighting the plague he likely caused, and the peace-loving climate evangelists in the Democratic Party have approved the biggest defense budget the Pentagon has ever seen. 

The only viable solution to the omnicide of the elites is to find a way to dismantle the powers that make this hideous outcome possible. Greta Thuneberg needs to put down the megaphone and pick up a shotgun. Lock and load is the only language the doomsday industry is fluent in. I'm talking revolution here folks, hopefully nonviolent. Barring that, dearest motherfuckers, we're fucked.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack: songs that influenced this post

*  Steal My Sunshine by LEN

*  Panic by the Smiths

*  I Know the End by Phoebe Bridgers

*  Shine On by John Lennon

*  Wild Horses by the Sundays

*  Desolation Road by Bob Dylan

*  Beginning To See the Light by the Velvet Underground

*  November Spawned a Monster by Morrissey 

*  It's the End of the World as We Know it (And I Feel Fine) by REM

*  Baby Don't Cry by Sunflower Bean

Sunday, November 28, 2021

If You Truly Love America, You'll Tear it Down

 America is a nation that loves its fairytales and folklore, not just the legends that we teach to our children as if they were scientific fact, but the stories we tell ourselves that make up the very fabric of our day to day lives. The fables baked into our sacred holidays and tightly woven into our collective consciousness as a self-ordained master state, the indispensable nation, the greatest country on earth. 

There's the first Thanksgiving when desperate pilgrims seeking shelter and tolerance in the New World graciously broke bread with their new native neighbors. 

There's the glorious gunpowder miracle of the American Revolution, when our sage like Founding Fathers threw off the king's shackles and magically invented democracy out of thin air. 

Then there's the Second World War when the Greatest Generation saved the planet single-handedly from the scourge of Hitler and his undefeated Nazi stormtroopers. 

And of course, there's the time that Ronald Reagan saved the world from the evils of communism by defeating the Soviet Empire in the name of freedom, capitalism and apple-pie. 

We tell ourselves these stories so often that they've become almost second nature, forming a sort of national identity so existential to our very sense of self that even in the most heated of partisan political debates, the argument is never about the accuracy of these stories but rather which side lays claim to their tainted legacy. 

But these kinds of nationalist fairytales and folklore are really little more than a nostalgic and downright mystical variety of propaganda and, like most propaganda, they bear very little resemblance to the ugly truths that they were designed to obscure. Uncoincidentally, this kind of jingoistic zealotry has also made Americans downright allergic to these very same ugly truths. But here they are.

The truth about our buckle-loving pilgrim ancestors is that they were really little more than a puritanical death squad sent over in the Mayflower by King James to ethnically cleanse the native Wampanoag Nation of Turtle Island and prepare its scorched territory for use as slave plantations. Thanksgiving was invented by the nation these butchers built on the unmarked graves of the innocent during the Civil War and was then revived to its current folksy format during the Great Depression, on both occasions in order to galvanize a splintering empire beneath the authority of a single flag.

The truth about the American Revolution is that our Founding Fathers were wealthy oligarchs who hijacked this popular uprising and turned it into a glorified mutiny against a crown that they feared would threaten their ill-gotten wealth with its growing disenchantment with the slave trade and its intentions to limit the powers of these greedy colonists by granting rival Indian nations increased sovereignty. The very same Indian nations that Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson plagiarized with their invention of democracy in a document suspiciously similar to the Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy which they would later destroy to make room for more plantations.  

The truth about the Second World War is that America spent most of that battle aiding their old frenemies in the English Empire by helping them safeguard their own racist colonies in the third world while Nazi Germany depleted its resources slaughtering over 30 million Russians in a genocide that Churchill gleefully encouraged. The US only opened up the Western Front at Normandy after it had become frighteningly clear that Stalin had Hitler on the run and was about to steal our spoils across war torn Europe.

As for Reagan's Cold War victory, while America may have hastened the Soviet Union's collapse with our creation of Islamic terrorism on their borders, the Cold War only officially ended after our rival indispensable master state collapsed beneath the weight of its own vast rusted military hegemony and the increasingly hollow fairytales and folklore that they used to justify its existence to a populace that had grown too desperate to believe them anymore. The abyss stared back and Reagan saw victory in the mirror.

America's almost amniotic attachment to these lies that our government proliferates like bombs is made doubly tragic and strange when you dig a little deeper into our blood-spattered history and discover not only how deranged the true stories are but how many truly inspiring American stories there are lying just beneath the surface that simply never get told. 

Like the colonial uprising known as Bacon's Rebellion, when, in spite of the genocidal intentions of Nathaniel Bacon, European indentured servants and African slaves joined forces to liberate themselves from the King's despotic tobacco plantations and gain sovereignty over the soil they toiled on, burning Jamestown to the ground in the process and scaring the Crown into inventing the white race just to divide the pissed off poor people of this country against themselves.

Or the creation of the Seminole Nation by a renegade coalition of escaped slaves and Indian refugees who tamed the wilds of Florida to form the original stop on the underground railroad, much to the horror of plantation barons like Andrew Jackson. The American government attacked this rebel swamp republic in their first foreign intervention only to get their newly white asses whooped through the Everglades for nearly fifty goddamn years without the poly-colored savages giving them an inch of free soil without taking a mile of pink flesh.

Then there's the GI Movement, a motley crew of long-haired, dope smoking, antiwar, active-duty soldiers who forced their imperial masters to end the genocidal war on the people of Vietnam by threatening to wrestle control of our nation's sacred armed forces from them. During the late 60s and early 70s these rebel Ronin launched a rabid campaign of mutinies and officer fraggings that struck terror directly into the dark heart of the Pentagon itself and convinced the brass to pull the troops before they could join the Vietcong they were sent to kill in firing in Washington's general direction.

And of course, there's Timothy Leary's Brotherhood of Eternal Love, a rag-tag religion turned cartel of burnout surfers and ex-bikers who built America's greatest pot smuggling ring all so they could finance their messianic mission to turn the whole country onto the revolutionary power of LSD and forge world peace by encouraging an entire generation to tune in and drop out. 

This is America's other history. The history beneath the folklore. The history of the other America, my America, our America, the outlaw America. You see, dearest motherfuckers, I'll tell you a dirty little secret if you promise to spread it around, in spite of all my unpatriotic histrionic fire-breathing, I actually love this fucking country. I just hate the government that occupies it. America has always been a wild wide-open space, too vast for any one tribe to rule, so when our Founding Fathers forged an empire to do just that they inadvertently created a nation full of blind spots where a wide variety of tiny outlaw utopias could bloom out of sight from government eyes.

Polygamist compounds, mutual aid societies, proto-feminist brothels, new age movements, nudist colonies, hippie communes, outlaw biker gangs, gay cowboys, swinger's clubs, opium dens, Anabaptist farms, Black nationalists, temporary autonomous zones, red light districts, Afrocentric temples, hobo villages and black markets. This is the America I love. The decentralized collage of tribal freak nations that gave us free love, cryptocurrency, civilian militias, punk rock, internet porn, gangsta rap and blotter paper LSD. I love this country because I'm an unpatriotic histrionic fire-breather, and it's because I love this wild wide-open country that I hate the government that tries to control it.

What truly makes America great, what defines America's glorious outlaw culture is in direct opposition to everything that defines the American government and the toxic mythology it relies on to justify its very existence. Overthrowing this government, the one that jails, murders, censors and assimilates the freaks that make this country great, is the most American thing you can do. If you truly love America like I do, you'll tear it down. And the best way to do this, the least violent way to do this, is the way our American heroes from the escaped slaves to the Brotherhood of Eternal Love did it. By turning on, tuning in and dropping out.

Secede from this nation with fully autonomous communities that are completely unreliant on its largesse. Expand the grey market by creating a counter-economy that includes everything from pot to furniture and bleeds the government dry by denying it the pilfered tax revenue it relies on to bomb poor people and build prisons. We do all of this without firing a shot, but the moment the government tries to coerce us back under their dominion, we stand up and fight like Seminoles. With any luck, our derelict empire will go the way of their old Soviet adversaries and collapse before it comes to this because that's what governments too big for their nations do. However, we must be ready to defend this great outlaw nation of a thousand flags from all enemies, foreign and domestic, by any means necessary. But first things first, we have to break the spell of American folklore and wake the fuck up to live this wild American dream. No more fairytales of pilgrims and master states. No more worshiping power and voting for sociopaths.

Maybe this all sounds a little crazy, like the rantings of a star-crossed, dreamy eyed, freakazoid. But what do you expect, dearest motherfuckers? I'm a fucking American.

Peace, Love & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post

*  America (You're Freaking Me Out) by the Menzingers

*  Rebels by Tom Petty

*  Young Americans by David Bowie

*  Who We Be by DMX

*  The National Anthem by Radiohead

*  Mutiny, I Promise You by the New Pornographers

*  Banned In the USA by 2 Live Crew

*  See No Evil by Television

*  Your Best American Girl by Mitski

Sunday, November 21, 2021

The ArmaLite and the iPhone: How to Fuck the Police in a Post Defund Era

 Something happened on May 25th, 2020, when George Floyd's heart stopped, something revolutionary. As the whole country watched helplessly while a clearly psychotic police officer murdered a bound and incapacitated human being before a captive audience on a Minneapolis street, something snapped. Something in all of us. After decades of watching the police in this country slaughter unarmed Black people with total impunity, America said enough. By the end of the day Minneapolis was on fire, by the end of the week the whole country burned. The George Floyd Uprisings of the summer of 2020 were an unprecedented moment of collective insurrectionary upheaval. It was about race but it transcended race. Unlike the riots of 1968, this wasn't just a Black thing, this was a revolution thing. People of all races, classes, ages, genders and political persuasions joined each other in the streets in a massive outpouring of rage against the state in general and the armed thugs in blue who ruthlessly defend it in particular.

Cop cars were flipped like nickels, police stations burned to the ground, six city blocks in Seattle declared themselves to be an autonomous zone and essentially seceded from the United States. Protesters laid siege to a federal courthouse in Portland like Dien Bien Phu for over 100 days straight, weathering nightly barrages of teargas, rubber bullets and flashbang grenades until the feds backed down and abandoned their post in defeat. This state of existential panic among the authoritarian class reached all the way to the top. As an increasingly unhinged President Donald Trump unleashed caravans of anonymous federal agents in unmarked cars to disappear protesters in Portland, their comrades in Washington DC checked the commander in chief where he slept, surrounding the White House and shaking its gates like a cage as the most powerful man on earth cowered in his bunker. The illusion of state omnipotence had officially been shattered. People finally really did have the power.

The sharper powers at be knew what they had to do. Law and order would only accent their weakness and stoke the nation's righteous indignation. In order for the state to survive they would have to give the crowd what they wanted, or at least the temporary illusion of it. Suddenly, across the country, wealthy white liberals felt our pain. The pissed off people on the bottom of this country were showered in promises. Over night the seemingly radical notion of defunding the police had become a downright mainstream talking point. Nine members of the Minneapolis city council stood on a stage strewn with that very catchphrase and promised their enraged constituents that they would dismantle that cities notoriously racist and heavy handed police force. Portland mayor and renowned pigfucker Ted Wheeler pledged to divert millions in funding from his private army. Even the Democratic Party, who had notoriously given our nation's police state chainsaws with their Clinton Crime Bill, came to us in dashikis on bended knee and offered us the George Floyd Act if we just calmed down. We shouldn't have listened. We should have kept the fires burning.

Of coarse they all capitulated to their lobbyists once we put the torches down. That's what these people do. The Minneapolis City Council quickly abandoned their efforts to defund the police and a toothless ballot measure claiming to do just that was easily defeated by the Karens of the suburbs who had been strategically terrified with the liberal boogeyman of gun violence in a time of lockdown induced poverty. Mayor Wheeler flipped his wig completely and ended up announcing a $5.2 million expansion of the Portland Police Department he promised to reign in. And the George Floyd Act for Mild Mannered Police Reform died a silent death in the backrooms of Washington as soon as Derek Chauvin was successfully thrown under the bus by the very state that birthed him before being added to the ranks of the Prison Industrial Complex that he once so heartlessly served. 

None of this should be shocking to anyone guilty of paying attention to how this nation really works. The suburban bourgeoisie of this country will never purge their class privilege for the people they pet with bumper stickers calling for equality and racial harmony on their Teslas. These people can never comprehend the terror that marginalized people feel when we see those flashing red and blue lights. They can never truly grasp how someone like me, as a gender non-conforming transwoman, has to ask myself every time an armed cop approaches me, "Is this man going to rape me or merely hurl me into a holding cell with a bunch of men free to do their worst?" They're never going to have to give their sons instructions on how to react to state sanctioned racial profiling without getting shot. And the state they love will never save us from their own personal security detail, the sacred keepers of the monopoly on the use of force that gives their hierarchy meaning.

The government won't save us. We have to take the initiative to save ourselves. If the predator class in this country won't defund the police then we must arm ourselves and defend our communities, be they ghettoes, trailer parks or gayborhoods, by policing the police that prey on them. It wouldn't be the first time. The Black Panther Party was founded specifically for this very purpose in 1966. After reading about Robert F. Williams' efforts to create a Black Armed Guard in the Deep South to defend rural Blacks against the state sanctioned terrorism of the Klan, a couple of students at Oakland's Merritt Community College named Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale came to the conclusion that their notoriously violent local police force served the exact same function as their hooded southern brethren, brutalizing poor Black folk to keep them in line. So they decided to form an armed militia of their own that would serve the same purpose as Williams' Black Armed Guard for the ghettoes of inner city Oakland. Thus Bobby and Huey formed the Black Panthers with a handful of local street toughs, and after educating themselves on the finer points of California's gun laws, they took up arms and began policing the police.

Clad in black berets and leather jackets, the Panthers would monitor radio scanners and show up wherever the police did, legally armed with loaded shotguns as well as law books. The presence of heavily armed Black men kept the police from taking things too far while Panthers would inform the arrested of their legal rights. It worked. The streets patrolled by the Panthers became safer and their popularity quickly spread their ranks to new chapters across the country. The state was furious and began to make efforts to disarm the poor. 

After the Panthers protested these efforts with a heavily publicized armed march on the California State Capitol, then Republican governor, Ronald Reagan, signed the Mulford Act into law in 1967, banning open carry with the full support of both parties and the NRA, creating a precedent on which the national gun control movement would be constructed to keep poor people of all colors across the nation less armed than the police who bullied them. The Panthers kept up the good fight for as long as they could but they would ultimately succumb to the extrajudicial pressure put on them by the FBI and their deadly Cointelpro program that infested their ranks with saboteurs and entrapped their leaders in bloody ambushes by their allies in local police departments throughout the country. 

So what's changed since 1967? Not enough and a whole lot. The police continue to abuse the Black community and other marginalized people with total impunity, killing on average over 1000 people every year. But the battlefield has changed significantly and somewhat to our favor. Open carry laws have spread across the country with the full support of the Supreme Court and lobbies like the NRA who once supported their destruction. High powered rifles like the AR-15 are cheap and plentiful, giving civilians the option of fire superiority over their own local police forces. The powers at be have foolishly assumed that only white vigilantes like Kyle Rittenhouse will take advantage of this playing field but antifascist militias like Black Guns Matter, Redneck Revolt and the Not Fucking Around Coalition aim to prove them dead wrong.

But perhaps the greatest new weapon at our disposal to combat the scourge of the police state is the smartphone. The only reason this country even knows the names of unwilling martyrs like Eric Garner, Oscar Grant and George Floyd is that their tragic deaths were caught on camera by iPhones and other devices. Black, Brown and Queer people have been telling this country for years that we were being abused and often slaughtered in cold blood by this nation's finest, but seeing is believing and for many young Americans seeing this shocking imagery is what it took to bring them in the streets.

But it's not enough. Copwatch movements have blossomed across the country in recent years but this still doesn't change the fact that Eric Garner and George Floyd were slowly strangled to death as unarmed civilians stood by helpless to do anything but beg for humanity from the heavily armed barbarians in blue that kept them at bay. We saw a similar spectacle in Kenosha as cops in tanks sat by and watched as one of their junior cadets shot it out with a poorly armed mob of protesters. This is unacceptable. The only way that the people are ever going to be able to take back our streets is if we get organized and arm ourselves with both the rifle and the smartphone. The leadership of the Black Panthers was decimated after they were rendered fugitives by a spat of shady police shootouts that would take years to prove were acts of self-defense. With an arsenal of smartphones at their disposal, these facts would have been proven to the whole world instantly at the click of a button, and with well organized poor communities legally allowed to arm themselves in the open for any blue clad strangler to see, the cops will have no choice but to think twice before they fuck with us.

The Founding Fathers of this nation may have been a pack of slave raping genocidal plutocrats but they got one thing right when they observed that there was nothing more dangerous to democracy than a standing army and the only real defense against this menace is a well organized voluntary militia. If we the people want to rid ourselves once and for all of the standing armies of the police state, all we have to do is rise up and take back what's rightfully ours. Our streets. Our peace. Our communities. And all it costs is the price of an ArmaLite and an iPhone.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post

*  Fuck the Police by NWA

*  Follow Me Around by Radiohead

*  Police On My Back by the Clash

*  Territorial Pissings by Nirvana

*  I Shot the Sheriff by Bob Marley & the Wailers

*  Fight the Power by Public Enemy

*  I Fought the Law by Dead Kennedys

*  List of Demands by Saul Williams

Sunday, November 14, 2021

Partisan Derangement Syndrome: When Voting Becomes a Distraction from Democracy

 It seems like stupid season comes earlier and earlier every two years. Why, I could swear that only ten months ago was the most important national election of my young life and we're already gearing up for another most important national election of my young life. In fact, I would estimate that I've survived no fewer than 16 most important national elections of my young life, each one allegedly more most important than the last. Now, in the wake of Joe Biden's plummeting approval ratings and the recent gubernatorial upset in Virginia, Democrats and Republicans alike are prepping for all out war again during the midterms a full year before they're even set to take place and they're bombarding young independents like me with the message to vote for their corrupt corporate party instead of the other corrupt corporate party because my life depends on a lesser evil occupying the Capitol.

It's not all their fault. In fact, I kind of feel bad for the sorry bastards. Both Republicans and Democrats alike suffer from a debilitating virus more devastating than any two strains of COVID put together known as Partisan Derangement Syndrome. A form of toxic color blindness that allows one to act like an obnoxious close-minded little shit because only members of the other party are obnoxious close-minded little shits. Other symptoms of PDS include cable news dependency, rampant jingoism, the delusion that a single corrupt elderly white man is the cause of all life's ills, the delusion that some other equally corrupt elderly white man is the solution to all life's ills, oral diarrhea and badgering your few sane relatives to the brink of self-immolation for not succumbing to the same virus that has rendered you into a yammering hypocritical nitwit. Most people who suffer from PDS will have zero awareness of their own sickness but will become irritatingly aware of it's existence in the members of the rival party and will come up with fantastic plot lines to explain its purely partisan nature.

Republicans will tell you that Democrats are a band of multicultural Marxist jihadists on the war path to destroy America as we know it because they hate White Jesus and any poor freedom loving WASP who puts his name before common sense. In this narrative, Joe Biden is little more than a babbling braindead nincompoop controlled by a handful of dick chopping Muslim women of color, like some kind of Spike Lee Joint remake of Weekend At Bernie's. The ambition of these evil wokesters is to rape your children's supple minds with the exotic witchcraft of Critical Race Theory and Transgenderism until they join the hordes of undocumented aliens in forming a new genderless mulatto master race to replace the hard working Caucasian victims of this country's silent majority and usher in a new Eurasian Century for their secret Chinese overlords. 

Not to be beat, Democrats will tell you that Republicans represent nothing less than a Fifth Reich that answers directly to none other than Vladimir Putin himself and that a new rainbow coalition of permanently vulnerable but newly vital marginalized people like myself can only be saved from a career white supremacist supervillain like Donald Trump if we cling to the ample bosom of a career white supremacist savior like Joe Biden. Without the tirelessly patronizing patriarchy of the DNC, poor defenseless trannies like myself would be utterly helpless against the very police state that they erected to contain the minorities they suddenly care so damn much about. These self-made bastions of enlightened champagne socialism are the only thing standing between us and an unwashed horde of unvaccinated inbred Bible-thumping hillbillies, chomping toothlessly at the bit to subject our gloriously indispensable democracy to wave after wave of January 6 style insurrections until nothing but the autocracy of Orange Man Bad is left standing. 

This kind of divisive bipartisan culture war nonsense is nothing but a distraction from the cruel reality that both of these parties serve the same damn masters. It's all theater in the form of an epic fever dream of endless binary conflict between the forces of blue and red, good and evil. Washington politics is essentially just pro-wrestling for wonks. The two parties put on a good show battling over issues no lobby stands to profit much from, like abortion and CRT, when in reality they aren't so much fighting as dancing for the cameras, with every piledriver, elbow drop and chair shot carefully choreographed so that no one truly powerful ever gets hurt. And after a long day of play fighting, these wealthy heels and babyfaces all get together at the same tony Beltway garden parties and have a good laugh over cocktails at our expense as Republicans and Democrats alike toast to Lockheed Martin and Goldman Sachs and another two years of blowing up brown people in the desert with our tax dollars while they all get fat and rich.

Don't you see children, it's all a work. No matter which party holds the title belt this week, the same multinational corporations who fund this ruse always win. That's why the only thing that's really changed over the last year from Trump to Biden is the rhetoric. When you look at the politics that really count, nothing has changed. In no place is this more painfully clear than with the two issues that define the very nature of American imperial power; the police state and the war machine.

In the wake of the fiery uprisings of the summer of 2020, Joe Biden ran on a barrage of promises to roll back the police state that he and Bill Clinton constructed to keep the Black and Brown people they pander to in chains. The Democrats inaugurated this new era of reimagining policing with the George Floyd Act, a modest set of reforms that passed the House on partisan lines. But the moment Derek Chauvin was found guilty of lynching the bill's namesake, it very quickly died on the vine in backroom negotiations with nary a whimper from Senate Democrats, while Biden funneled $350 billion in pandemic relief funds into strengthening the same pigs his party quite willingly failed to reign in. Biden has similarly used the boogeymen of gun violence and domestic extremism to expand the reach of the FBI while they continue former Attorney General Bill Barr's jihad against the mostly Black partisans of the George Floyd Uprisings that frightened woke Democrats just enough to pretend that Black lives matter.

Meanwhile, the police state's greatest growth industry at the border continues to boom. In spite of Republican conspiracy theories of open borders and the great replacement, Biden has picked up where he left off during the Obama Administration by out trumping Trump on immigration cruelty. The concentration camps are fuller than ever with traumatized children and the Prison Industrial Complex is raking in the doe. After making a big show of closing a couple of notoriously depraved private prisons, Biden has kept nearly 200 open for ICE while using Title 42 to extrajudicially hurl out more migrants in less than a year than Trump did in four.

We see this same pattern of bait and switch hypocrisy in Biden's suspiciously Trumpian foreign policy. During his first foreign policy speech, Joe pledged to end all American support for Saudi Arabia's "offensive" operations in its genocidal war on Yemen. But Joe conveniently left the back door wide open by pledging to continue to support the sovereignty of a nation that considers bombing school busses full of children to be defensive. In the year since that speech, quite literally nothing has changed in Yemen. Saudi Arabia's crippling blockade remains as crippling as ever as millions of Yemenis teeter on the brink of starvation and Biden has ok'd half a billion dollars in maintenance contracts to keep the House of Saud's American killing machines killing. All while Joe plays the peace card by offering to end it all if the Houthi rebels simply disarm and surrender to their Wahhabi tormentors.

This same kind of diplomatic chicanery runs rampant on Iran as well. The Islamic Republic has graciously offered to return to the same peace deal Donald Trump unceremoniously tore to shreds, provided that we hold up our end of the bargain and lift the sanctions that have contributed to Iran's 125,000 COVID deaths. But 6 rounds of feckless negotiations in and the Biden Administration continues to sabotage it's alleged intentions to return to the JCPOA at every turn by adding conditions like requiring new restrictions to Iran's missile program that could cripple their defenses against their American tax dollar funded foes in Saudi Arabia. In the meantime, the White House continues to display their good faith by adding on even more sanctions and threatening Iran with announcements that all options remain on the table as we fly B-I Bombers over the Straight of Hormuz, flanked by Saudi fighter jets fresh from the killing fields of Yemen.

If all this seems eerily familiar it's because all of it was ripped straight from the book of Trump which was ripped straight from the book of Obama and so on and so forth. In a nation where the elections are ruthlessly rigged so only two parties can win and both parties serve the exact same corporate masters in the Prison and Military Industrial Complexes, elections aren't a form of democracy, they are a distraction from it. We saw more democracy in the streets in three months during the summer of 2020 than this country had seen in thirty years. That's why both parties are so desperate to quell this kind of cop car burning populism with chickenshit squabbles over textbooks and transgender bathrooms. The big secret of the supposedly game changing gubernatorial election in Virginia is that it was a race between a Carlyle Group neocon and a Clinton Foundation neoliberal. Two swamp critters with nary a ray of sunlight between their centrist plutocratic ambitions that both left and right wing populists should have been able to agree were equally loathsome and unworthy of a single ballot. This is how the partisan electoral hoax works in this country. It splits poor people against each other over rich fucking assholes who they should be saving their rage for.

The only known cure to Partisan Derangement Syndrome is direct democracy and you'll never find that in an American voting booth as long as the two party plutocracy is running the show. Enjoy stupid season, dearest motherfuckers. I'll see you people in the streets.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post

*  Champions of Red Wine by the New Pornographers

*  Text Book by Lana Del Rey

*  In the Meantime by Helmet

*  Dumb by Nirvana

*  Run Run Run by Kurt Vile

*  Cornflake Girl by Tori Amos

*  Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger

*  Working for the Knife by Mitski

*  Dimed Out by Titus Andronicus

*  You Can't Always Get What You Want by the Rolling Stones

Sunday, November 7, 2021

A Queer Call for Free Speech

 I didn't know Daphne Dorman but she was one of my people. Daphne was a transgender comedian and a Queer rights activist in the San Francisco Bay Area. She was a gifted software engineer who created her own web development agency but still managed to make time to volunteer as an instructor teaching other trans people code at her local LGBT Center. She was a devoted mother and sister who had survived a hellish childhood without ever losing her wicked sense of humor. She managed to turn this hard earned skill for comic survivalism into a budding career as a stand up in her local comedy scene. 

Daphne Dorman is probably best known though for her friendship with fellow comedian Dave Chappelle who would become something of a mentor to her. After Dave's 2019 Netflix special, Sticks and Stones, came under heavy fire for perceived homophobic and transphobic material, Daphne stuck her neck out for her friend's right to free speech on Twitter only to have it savagely slit for days by her own people, my people. As Chapelle would note at the end of his latest incendiary special, The Closer, within weeks of being dragged across social media as a traitor to her kind for simply voicing an unpopular opinion, Daphne took her own life, leaving a litany of apologies to her community on Facebook. 

We will probably never know for sure if Daphne's tragic suicide was the result of these attacks, as Chappelle has insinuated. As noted above, Daphne had a lifetime's worth of demons to contend with and she had just lost custody of her young daughter. Suicide is sadly common among my people. But I can tell you as an openly genderqueer transwoman myself that there has been more than one occasion when having the support of my tribe has been the only thing that's kept me from walking into oncoming traffic and Daphne lost this safety net right when she needed it most. We, as a community, let her down and now we all have to live with that.

So why then do I feel like the only trans person who feels guilty. In all the fall out over The Closer, with the protests and walkouts and online diatribes calling for Dave Chappelle's microphone to be cut, the facts surrounding Daphne's death have been largely glossed over at best. Dave devoted the last ten minutes of this special to a proud transwoman who he called a member of his own tribe, and her entire existence is being treated as a footnote. 

That's because most of the people reacting to Dave's controversial set, Queer and straight, didn't even bother to watch it before deciding that it should be canceled for crimes against political correctness. But to me the greatest crime here is the fact that my people chose political correctness over one of our own and the results may have been devastating. We owe it not just to Daphne but to ourselves to take a good hard look in the mirror and ask ourselves, what have we become? And is this who we truly want to be?

That's why I chose to write this piece. I'm not here to defend Dave Chapelle or his set. Though I truly believe that Dave's intention with The Closer was to open up a dialogue between the Black and Queer communities, his failure to acknowledge my communities own history of oppression and in particular his abject failure to even recognize the existence of Black Queer people disturbed me as much as any Queer person. 

My intention also isn't to write a partisan diatribe against the evils of liberal cancel culture. Quite the contrary. I recognize cancel culture to be a uniquely conservative contraption birthed by those fascists in the Christian Right. Which is why I really wrote this piece, to ask my people on both the far-left and in the Queer community, why in god's green dick are you embracing the distinctly conservative values of censorship and what do you honestly hope to achieve by doing this? This isn't who we are. We can do better than this. I know because I came to these movements to escape this cancel culture.

I grew up in a stultifyingly conservative rural Christian community. I spent 11 years at a tiny Catholic school where everything that was deemed inappropriate for young Christian minds was canceled and nearly everything was deemed inappropriate. That TV show is too violent, cancel it, it's inappropriate. That pop song is too suggestive, cancel it, it's inappropriate. That playground game doesn't instill traditional Christian values, you guessed it, cancel it, it's inappropriate.

But the real trouble didn't start until it began to become abundantly clear that I myself was the problem. Everything I did, everywhere I went, was somehow always wrong, the way I walked, the way I talked, the way I dressed, the pictures I drew and the stories I wrote all seemed to point to the fact that I was somehow fundamentally different from the other little boys and girls and therefore I was inappropriate.

In a small town in rural Pennsylvania in the late nineties nobody had ever even heard of words like genderqueer or non-binary. What I knew about being transgender was that it meant you were a boy who played with dolls and wore dresses, and it meant you were mentally ill and probably going to hell. I had no idea that someone could be a tomboy or even a lesbian in a boy's body, so I grew up having no idea I was Queer. I had know idea what the hell I was. All I knew is that I was a freak and that was inappropriate. Even worse, the few people on TV who looked or acted anything like the way I felt on the inside; Grace Jones, KD Lang, Marilyn Manson, Dennis Rodman, were all canceled sinners destined for eternal damnation, so it didn't take me very long to connect the dots.

I grew up convinced that I was going to hell and that if anyone ever saw the real me, my friends, my teachers, my parents, they would run for the hills from what they saw. I didn't believe that I was deserving of even god's love, so I didn't love myself. These feelings of deep seated shame and self-loathing lasted well into adulthood and ultimately festered into PTSD and a series of crippling nervous breakdowns that metastasized into full blown agoraphobia by my early twenties.

My only salvation from this isolated hell was my books and my music. Through my own private studies on the counterculture of the 1960s and 70s and my discovery of punk rock music, I was introduced to the far-left. This was the far-left of Lenny Bruce, H. Rap Brown, Patti Smith and Jello Biafra. The far-left of CBGB's and the White Panther Party. The far left of rock n roll, dope and fucking in the streets. This wasn't a movement defined by rules and mores. 

It was a tribal community of fellow freaks who refused to be ashamed, who did what they wanted, smoked what they wanted, fucked who they wanted, and above all else, said what they wanted to say. A movement all about speaking truth to power and telling it like it is. It was the polar opposite of the conservative Christian gulag of my childhood. As long as you weren't hurting anyone else, nothing was inappropriate, no subject was off the table, and if anything, offending people was celebrated as a revolutionary act of liberation.

It was this movement that finally led me to my tribe. I didn't begin to recover from my childhood until I came out of the closet and embraced my queerness in all its uncensored glory. I wasn't LGBT. I was a genderfuck bull-dyke with a dick and I was done with being ashamed of being inappropriate. John Waters wasn't appropriate. Allen Ginsberg wasn't appropriate. Vaginal Davis sure as fuck wasn't appropriate. So why the fuck should I be. I was finally free from the prison cell of my childhood tormentors, but somewhere along the line something very strange and terrifying happened. The left and the LGBT movement became appropriate.

Somehow my people had become the new church ladies, and once again, the way I walked, the way I talked, the pictures I drew and the stories I wrote became inappropriate, this time in the name of political correctness, an unwritten code of conduct that insures that no one will offend anyone ever again. Now nobody seems to give a fuck about the freedom these movements once represented. They're all much too concerned with safety, even if it means silencing our own damn people with the machinery of big government and big business. Well I won't have it. I won't stand by and watch the movements and communities I love become like the one I barely escaped with my life.

I fundamentally reject the insane notion that equates art and speech of any kind with violence. This is the exact same bunk that the Christian Right has trafficked in for decades. Record stores and comic shops were lobbied mercilessly by pearl clutching Jesus freaks to remove violent and sexual content that they insisted would lead to bedlam. Now my own damn people are protesting any website that provides a platform to people who talk shit about us because this allegedly promotes violence towards marginalized people like me. Well this marginalized person calls bullshit.

Dave Chapelle is no more responsible for the actions of assholes who bash me for stepping in the wrong bathroom than Grand Theft Auto is for the latest school shooting. Art doesn't kill people, psychopaths do, and cancel culture of any kind only empowers the same corporate and federal psychopaths that thrive on the very bigotry they claim to protect us from. Down south, the state is sold as the only defense good Bible thumping folk have to protect them from perverts in skirts in the ladies room. Up in the supposedly enlightened north, this exact same power structure is sold as the only thing protecting minorities like me from roaming mobs of mouth frothing bigots. I for one am tired of being used as prop for this scam. It's a fucking shell game and no matter which shell you pick, the house wins.

Queer people got sold this shit because we're scared and we have every right to be considering the sheer amount of violence and oppression we face on a daily basis. It's not unusual for victims of oppression to adopt the tactics of their oppressor in self-defense.  But this is not the answer. The only thing political correctness achieves is making it easier for powerful bigots to hide behind good manners while brave outspoken powerless people like Daphne Dorman get crushed for not following the rules that supposedly protect us. As long as the same hierarchal structures remains in tact, any rules we create will only be used to solidify their power.

So I say let Dave tell his shitty jokes even if they do make us cringe, and push companies like Netflix to hire more trans comics instead of canceling him, because everyone deserves a platform, even the assholes. The only thing inappropriate enough to be worth canceling is the power systems that censorship, no matter how well intentioned, reinforces. This can only be done by giving everyone the freedom to speak so long as everyone has the right to respond.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post

*  Bad Catholics by the Menzingers

*  Eat Me Alive by Judas Priest

*  Everybody Does by Julien Baker

*  Bastard by Motley Crue

*  Shell Game by Bright Eyes

*  Animal (Fuck Like a Beast) by W.A.S.P.

*  M.T.V.- Get Off the Air by Dead Kennedys

*  Into the Coven by Mercyful Fate

*  Rock n Roll N*gger by Patti Smith

*  Possessed by Venom

Sunday, October 31, 2021

The American Monster Machine

 America likes to think of itself like Van Helsing in a world full of monsters; a rogue vigilante republic cursed with the responsibility to protect the weak and the downtrodden from the forces of evil with it's superpowers. After all, without the great benevolent savior state of America, who would be there to combat autocracy and rid the world of the scourge of drugs and terrorism? And it's true, America does wage a constant battle against a veritable rogues gallery of supervillains. But there is just one tiny detail that's often left out of this Hammer House narrative. America may be defined by its forever war with the monsters of the world, but this Helsing nation gave birth to most of them. In reality, the American horror story bares far more in common with Frankenstein than any other mythology, with our indispensable nation playing the titular role of the mad scientist at war with the scourge of it's own hideous creation. A simple glance at history makes this analogy painfully clear.

America detests autocracy. Or at least so we're told. Ours is a nation which markets itself as a champion of freedom and democracy across the globe. However, this marketing campaign rings a bit hollow when you count the bodies. For a shining beacon of hope, America caries a rather odd addiction for launching coup d'etats against downtrodden nations it deems unworthy of autonomy. By some historical estimates, such as that of the work of late State Department hack turned imperial historian, William Blum, America has launched nearly 60 coups in the last 60 years with more than half being successful, and the targets have far too often been those democracies we claim to protect.

There's the overthrow of Mohammed Mossadegh of Iran in 1953, Jacobo Arbenz of Guatemala in 1954, the great Patrice Lumumba of the Congo in 1960, Joao Goulart of Brazil in 1964, Salvador Allende of Chile in 1973, all the way up to Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti in 2004 and Manuel Zeleya of Honduras in 2009. The list literally goes on and on. America has become so devoted to sabotaging democracy in it's own hemisphere that it runs a school, formerly known as the School of the Americas, who's curriculum includes everything from torture to propaganda and who's alumni reads like a who's who of human rights abusers, including some of Latin America's more heinous autocrats, like Argentina's Jorge Videla, Bolivia's Hugo Banzer and Panama's Manuel Noriega.

In fact America has a rather storied history of creating and propping up some of histories most heinous strongmen. Creatures like Suharto of Indonesia, who inaugurated his thirty year reign of terror by helping his masters in Washington to liquidate the third largest communist party on the planet with paramilitary hordes of machete wielding fiends. Over the span of several months between 1965 and 1966 more than half a million people were butchered. Men strung from flagpoles in town squares, women raped to death with knives, their heads decorated the streets on pikes, their severed genitals decorated the quarters of Suharto's proud headhunters, what remained of the bodies were impaled with bamboo to keep them from floating and clogging up the rivers. All while unrepentant State Department hacks at the American embassies checked off the names of the slain that they provided to these ghouls one by one.

Then there's the blood caked reign of Haiti's Francois "Papa Doc" Duvalier and his son, Jean Claud "Baby Doc" Duvalier, who terrorized their impoverished island nation for decades with the American trained demons of the Tonton Macoutes, a death squad of witch doctors who burned and stoned their victims alive and then hung their corpses from the trees and slaughtered any civilian who dared to take them down. Some estimates put their body count at 60,000. Their fearless leader, Luckner Cambronne, better known as "The Vampire of Caribbean", died in exile in Florida a rich man after making a fortune selling the blood and corpses of his victims to American universities and hospitals.

Of course, when our monsters take their reign of terror too far, usually by nationalizing a prized resource or sharing the sugar with the wrong neighbors, America gets to play it's coveted role of hero, saving poor nations from the monsters we built by bombing them into oblivion. When our old friend, Saddam Hussein, outlived his usefulness gassing his own people with the chemicals we sold him, we simply used another monster in neighboring Kuwait to goad him into invading the wrong nation so we could save them by subjecting our former allies in Iraq to decades of starvation sanctions and infant warping depleted uranium. We offered a similar treatment to School of the Americas alumni, Manuel Noriega, of Panama, which we also decimated with weapons of mass destruction, leaving razed ghettos and mass graves of civilians in our wake.

But America also detests drugs. We must, after all, we've burned through a trillion dollars of the tax payer's money on a fifty year war on getting high and created an entire industrial complex to warehouse more than one million Americans who dare to partake a year. But once again, America has a long history of disturbingly cozy relations with the monsters we fight. On no fewer than two occasions, the CIA has virtually constructed and coddled the world's number one suppliers of heroin on the globe. During our multinational bloodbath in Indochina during the 60s and 70s, the US erected the Golden Triangle with the help of Taiwan's KMT and warlords like General Ving Pao, supplying 70% of the world's supply of opium, shipped in the corpses of dead GIs and slung on the streets of New York by our old friends in the Mafia during one of the nation's worst heroin epidemics. History repeated itself again during the 1980s when we helped those fine gentlemen in the Mujahedeen to turn Afghanistan into the new Golden Triangle, supplying half of America's heroin, all while helping Nicaraguan death squads introduce the crack epidemic to South Central Los Angeles with a little help from Mr. Noriega. 

America combats the scourge of its own beasts in the drug trade the same way it does with wayward dictators, by declaring more endless wars. We've turned both Colombia and Mexico into killing fields, often combatting death squads we once trained like Los Zetas and the Cali Cartel with new death squads which will inevitably take their place. In the meantime, back on the home front, America has used this war on consensual behavior to re-enslave the Black community, tearing generations of families in twain and creating a new multi-trillion dollar Jim Crow with America's colossal prison system. Liberal drug warriors like Bill Clinton and Joe Biden have made Jefferson Davis their bitch by achieving the same goals of enslaving an entire race of Americans for profit while selling themselves as their virtue signaling white saviors. Remember kids, if you don't vote for master, you ain't black. 

And then there's America's latest Frankenstein monster, that beast called terrorism, which America has poured $8 trillion and counting into combatting and has murdered over 900,000 brown people to avenge the lives of 2,000 in the Twin Towers. But who brought down those monuments to American capitalism? Well, none other than the offspring of our former partners in the dope trade back in Afghanistan. The true father of modern Islamic extremism is none other than dear old Jimmy Carter, who built the Mujahedeen with a little help from his favorite dictators in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, in order to lure the Soviet Union into an unwinnable quagmire in the mountains of heroin country. But America's endearing bromance with jihadism didn't end with Gorbachev. It didn't even end with 9/11. We continue to arm and train Wahhabists from Libya to Syria to topple dictators too secular to buy into our holy war bullshit. And round and round we go.

You see, dearest motherfuckers, America isn't a monster. America is something far more horrifying. America is a monster factory, building heinous ghouls so it can justify it's very existence fighting them and footing you for the fucking bill every step of the way. The wars on autocracy, drugs and terror are little more than massive hustles and the hustle never stops. America's latest imperial hustle is the so called crisis at the border. Refugees worldwide have doubled to 82 million in the past decade alone thanks to our Frankenstein wars, and now the same mad scientists who created this international tragedy want to get richer fighting it with more guns, more troops, and more prisons. This fucking madness doesn't end until we end it. We need to stop wasting our torches and pitchforks on monsters and turn them on the mad doctors who build them. The root cause of all this violence is Uncle Sam and we're never gonna vote him out of power, so we might as well burn his laboratory to the fucking ground and rebuild on the ashes.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post

*  I Put a Spell On You by Screamin' Jay Hawkins

*  Frankenstein by New York Dolls

*  American Nightmare by the Misfits

*  Stigmata by Ministry

*  Uranium Rock by Warren Smith

*  Closer by Nine Inch Nails

*  Tommy Gun by the Clash

*  Search & Destroy by the Stooges

*  New Kind of Kick by the Cramps

This post is dedicated in loving memory to William Blum. May his ghost continue to haunt us with the knowledge of our empire's sins in hope that we can rectify them with the fire of true democracy.

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Even More Scary Movies for Anarchists to Watch In the Dark

 It's that time of year again, dearest motherfuckers. My favorite time of year. A time for mischief and chaos. A time for goblins, ghosts and ghouls. A time for swirling leaves, raucous bonfires and flickering jack-o-lanterns. A time for soaped windows, toilet paper strewn streets and getting even with the role crazy adults who govern the rest of the year. A time when juvenile delinquency is celebrated and everyone is just another freak in drag like me. A time my Celtic ancestors use to call Samhain, when the barrier between mortals and the spirit world was broken and we were all encouraged to partake in the tricks and treats of the sprites and faeries. A sacred time for good natured blasphemy. The perfect time for macabre cinema and anarchy.

That's right, dearest motherfuckers, it's time for my annual list of scary movies for anarchists to watch in the dark. Horror movies are the perfect vehicles for radical social commentary because they are all about boldly confronting that which terrifies us most. So every year around this wonderful time, I compile a list of horrifying films that should provoke the anarchist in all of us. As usual, this list is full of politically incorrect, provocatively profane and critically disdained masterpieces of modern terror, and not all of them technically fall into the category of traditional horror cinema, but they're all bold studies in the dangers of authoritarian living and they're all worth surviving through. So without further ado, I give you even more scary movies for anarchists to watch in the dark.

Battle Royale (2000) by Kinji Fukasaku-  In a future that feels disturbingly nearer with every viewing, a middle school class is subjected to a twisted experiment in curbing juvenile delinquency by a totalitarian Japanese government. After being drugged on their way to a field trip, these unsuspecting teens find themselves captive on an island in which they are forced to fight each other to the death to survive. If all this sounds familiar, it's probably because Hollywood badly copied it with that dreadfully banal dreck known as The Hunger Games. But trust me when I tell you that the mercilessly gory original is far superior. In his final film, the great Kinji Fukasaku creates the perfect allegory for the evils of compulsory schooling, where power drunk adults bring the worst out of children to prepare them for the cruelties of adulthood in a totalitarian society. But as long as the young are willing to fight back for love and liberty, there will always be hope to turn the guns on the headmaster.

Green Room (2015) by Jeremy Saulnier-  The ultimate Antifa flick, after the anarcho-punks in the Ain't Rights find themselves Shanghaied at a rural Pacific Northwest skinhead bar and witness the savage murder of a would-be defector, they are forced to put their radical beliefs where their mouth is and fight for their lives from a barricaded green room against a horde of bloodthirsty neo-Nazis. The best thing about this wickedly funny survival horror masterpiece, aside from Patrick Stewart's instantly classic performance as the skinhead kingpin, Darcy Barker, is that it encourages the very best angels of Antifa's nature. Before the murder these punks put on a performance raucous enough to win over their enemies even when they opened with the Dead Kennedys classic, "Nazi Punks Fuck Off." But the moment the audience turns on an innocent, they fight like fucking hell. They may not realize it, but this is what the libertarian Non-Aggression Principal is really all about, defending peace by any means necessary. 

American Psycho (2000) by Mary Harron-  Bret Easton Ellis' woefully misunderstood cult classic is given the perfect cinematic treatment by feminist auteur Mary Harron who clearly comprehends the savage satire at the heart of the novel. Christian Bale's Patrick Bateman is the perfect embodiment of American capitalism; handsome, charming, well groomed and completely empty inside. We follow the Wall Street serial killer as he cascades into a downward spiral of commercial banality juxtaposed against the psychotic violence it represents. The American Empire in the 1980's is pretty savagely summed up by a stockbroker murdering a colleague like a Contra with an ax while Huey Lewis covers his screams. We are all Patrick Bateman in this country, aren't we?

Baise-Moi (2000) by Virginie Despentes & Coralie Trinh Thi-  I'm not going to sugarcoat it, dearest motherfuckers, Baise-Moi is a severely unpleasant film and quite possibly the most uncomfortable viewing experience on this list. It's little wonder almost every critic alive in 2000 despised the picture. Only Patrick Bateman would be sick enough to actually enjoy it. But sometimes your medicine is a bitter pill to swallow, but that doesn't make it any less necessary. A movie about two women in the sex industry who go on a cross-country killing spree after being brutally raped, Baise-Moi (French for 'Fuck Me') may not be pretty but it is the perfect display of the aching nihilism that defines what it means to be a woman in a society that only values us as vessels for male satisfaction. If you feel sick by the credits, the medicine is working.

The Fly (1986) by David Cronenberg-  Jeff Goldblum might as well be starring as Tony Fauci in this sticky sci-fi cult classic about the dangers of brilliant men playing god. Mad scientist Seth Brundle seems to be really on to something groundbreaking when he creates pods that can allow genetic teleportation but after testing the devices on himself, something as seemingly insignificant as a fly in the machine causes him to slowly mutate into a gigantic hideous insect. If you can think of a better allegory for the horrors of gain of function research, I'd sure as fuck like to hear it. The only difference here is that the bat in the telepod turned us all into Jeff fucking Goldblum. Anything for science!

The Corporation (2003) by Mark Achbar & Jennifer Abott Their is plenty of shocking history to terrify you in this documentary, from the Business Plot to overthrow FDR in favor of something even more fascist to IBM's complicity in the Holocaust, but nothing is more horrifying than The Corporation's tightly researched argument that if a corporation truly is a human being, as our masters in the Supreme Court insist, than it fits the clinical definition of a psychopath like a glove. You thought Michael Myers was scary? Try a multinational Michael Myers the size of a small country. Now that's a monster too big to fail.

Cannibal Holocaust (1980) by Ruggero DeodatoRuggero Deodato's grindhouse goregasm may not exactly be politically correct but it does a pretty devastating job of exposing the brutal nature of colonialism and the western mass media's active participation in it. What begins as a seemingly racist attempt by an American news team to rescue a group of fellow documentarians from a tribe of uncontacted Amazonian cannibals gets completely flipped on its severed ear when halfway through the film, the rescue team finds the now graphically devoured documentarian's footage only to discover that the victims began as victimizers; doctoring footage between bigoted jokes about their subjects before provoking the barbaric response from them that they desired by murdering innocent tribesmen and setting fire to their village. It's one of the most shocking left hooks in cinematic history. The victims are revealed to be the true savages. It's a bit like discovering that their were actually little Eichmann's hiding among the innocent in those Twin Towers. 

Pi (1998) by Darren Aronofsky-  Darren Aronofsky's starkly cerebral black and white debut is a bit of a psychological companion piece to The Fly. Max Cohen, a brilliant and reclusive mathematician, is on a one man jihad to prove that the chaos of the universe can be completely explained by a code. As his search for order in the universe brings him closer and closer to the brink of insanity, he finds himself the target of Wall Street brokers and religious zealots who seek to use his work to serve their own twisted schemes for power. The message becomes terrifyingly clear by the end of the picture. There are certain advances in technology that human beings simply aren't evolved enough to be trusted with. Ted Kaczynski could have spared a few lives with an 8mm camera.

Us (2019) by Jordan Peele-  A lot of people went nuts for Peele's groundbreaking debut, Get Out, about the horrors of racial appropriation, but I actually believe Us, his surreal treatise on class, was far more superior in both style and message. A nation wide uprising of subterranean clones known as the Tethered sends a family to war with themselves, against what are revealed to be the vengeful products of a failed government experiment. The message is perfect. For everything we the privileged take, something from our tethered doppelgangers is taken away until the tether snaps and the deprived say enough. This is precisely how the American Empire operates. One nation can only have everything if the rest have nothing. The Third World, both at home and abroad, are the Tethered, but they won't be tethered forever. Us is a warning.

Pan's Labyrinth (2006) by Guillermo del Toro-  Guillermo del Toro's dark fantasy about a little girl in Francoist Spain who escapes the tutelage of her cold Falangist stepfather to a beautiful and terrifying labyrinth of fantastic creatures in order to save her sickly mother and her newborn brother is the perfect anarchist fairytale. At the end of the day, it really doesn't matter if Ofelia's visions are reality or a childlike fantasy to escape it. What matters is that we are all born with hearts big enough to make the impossible a reality. It's in times like these, more than ever, that we need to be big enough to dream the way we did when we were small to defeat the very real monsters that threaten to devour us all. The world we seek to build on the ashes of the old is already all around us, it's just that it's visible only to those who know where to look.

Happy Halloween dearest motherfuckers. Keep dreaming.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- Nicky/CH