"...it's not the training to be mean but the training to be kind that is used to keep us leashed best." ~ Black Dog Red

"In case you haven't recognized the trend: it proceeds action, dissent, speech." ~ davidly, on how wars get done

"...What sort of meager, unerotic existence must a man live to find himself moved to such ecstatic heights by the mundane sniping of a congressional budget fight. The fate of human existence does not hang in the balance. The gods are not arrayed on either side. Poseiden, earth-shaker, has regrettably set his sights on the poor fishermen of northern Japan and not on Washington, D.C. where his ire might do some good--I can think of no better spot for a little wetland reclamation project, if you know what I mean. The fight is neither revolution nor apocalypse; it is hardly even a fight. A lot of apparatchiks are moving a lot of phony numbers with more zeros than a century of soccer scores around, weaving a brittle chrysalis around a gross worm that, some time hence, will emerge, untransformed, still a worm." ~ IOZ

Dec 29, 2012


Wife has cancer, looks like she's beating it. I have an auto-immune disease, which is how two years of poor health has finally resolved into a diagnosis. Doesn't look so good. I don't have any living tissue lymph nodes left in my lungs, and the inflammation has spread to my arms and arm pits. Don't know why I care to post this, mostly because I don't care. Can't say that I miss the blegh. But, sometimes it approaches amusing to have a chat with strangers.

Am glad that our kids won't be orphaned. It's weird to write that, but for a couple of months, we had to have this conversation between us. Not intellectually stimulating, but it requires a certain vigor which neither of us would have identified before.

World is still shit. Don't need me to tell you that.

Reckoning a personal apocalypse isn't necessarily liberating. I was pissed, mostly. Now, it's easier to let go. I don't want to let go. I'm not young, I'm not old, but I still cast a shadow.

Want to keep doing that.

Oct 23, 2012

Die At The Right Time

CT scan not promising. Have to learn to live with this reality. Ride well, for as long as you can, folks.

Oct 2, 2012

Cause and F/X

This is a living person. This image is not digitally altered. This appearance was accomplished with surgery, and daily by hand:

anastasiya shpagina

It's not my place to speak to her personally narrated reasons, or whatever justifications she's used for her own self. But, I think when feminists are discussing what they mean by conformity to femininity, this is a good illustration. It's not so much that it's extreme, it's that it's an extremely obvious example of an otherwise pervasive, but less obvious set of phenomena.

In a not unrelated pique of literary melange, a quote from Elizabeth Bear's deliciously excellent Sci-Fi novel, Carnival:

"...'The only significant natural predator that human women have is heterosexual men...Traditionally, the responsibility for safety falls on the victim. Women are expected to defend themselves from predators. To act like responsible prey. Limit risks, not take chances. Not to go out alone at night. Not talk to strange men. Rely on their own, presumably domesticated men for protection from other feral men - in exchange for granting them property rights over the women in question.''..."

I don't know if this is Bear's personal opinion, and I don't think it matters. She's using two (not randomly homosexual) characters' discussion to lay out the logic of a matriarchy they've been sent to undermine.

I can't help but see that the picture above, and Bear's character's observation below are intimately, intricately related.

Sep 13, 2012

Entirely Avoidable Outcomes

If you don't want to die in a US embassy or consulate, don't work in one.

If you won't want your death to be used to by (a) a fuckhead Mormon Republican, to justify drone wars and Hellfire missile attacks on Iranians who had fuck all to do with your summary execution at the hands of putative allies, or by (b) a callous, rat bastard Democrat, to justify sky death robot bombings and Hellfire missile attacks on Libyan non-combatants, in the name of retaliation, don't put your silly little self in a position to die in a US embassy or consulate.

If you don't want Diane Sawyer staring moon eyed into the camera, whisper voiced and falsely solicitous, while she discusses how you were a gentle ally of the Libyan people, and a peacemaker, examine whatever decision tree it is you use to plan out your next five or ten years. If it leads you towards a job with the State department, and an assignment to the CIA riddled gutter hole that is post-Qaddafi Libya, you get what you get. Plus, there's good money on the wager that Diane won't remember your name in passing three weeks from tomorrow. You're a prop. This was avoidable.

If you don't want your kids to sit in an overcrowded class room, it painted in prison grey and pysch-ward eggshell, being taught on entirely excusable autopilot by an overworked public school teacher who's already picking up the tab for most of the in-class materials, the next time your town or city has an official choice between further militarizing the cops, or hiring more teachers - perhaps your first thought shouldn't whimper along about "rising crime" and "criminal elements."

If you don't want so many people to hate your admittedly underpaid profession, learn to hit back hard enough to make the mayor's head crack on the wall behind him. Nobody likes a loser. More importantly, nobody trusts one. That pity thing? It's always laced with contempt.

If you can't remember what it's like to sit in a hot classroom while the autumn winds beckon, and play, play, play winks at you from behind a distant cloud or hill top, you probably won't avoid a simple failure to understand why a healthy child hates school. Children learn when they play and overcome. They remember when they're boxed into classrooms.

If you don't want to deal with the ramifications of Republican anti-women measures, or the Democrats' anti-labor ones, and you don't want to have to put up with the election season, practice swinging blunt objects. If you aren't willing to make a rat fuck in a suit worry for the security and integrity of his hide and vital organs, he's going to occupy himself with yours.

If you don't think that violence works, please explain the defense department's budget. Please explain the President's Praetorian Guard. Please explain why it is that those who rule can never agree with each other about how to fuck over their subjects, but there's no discord between them on the subject of how to keep them scared and running.

If you let a wrong go unrequited, somebody will always notice. If you don't like the conclusions they draw, about you, learn to requite a little. If the opponent isn't calculating what he can't predict about your possible conduct, he's already moved on to how he's going to take what's yours.

If you don't want to believe that whiteness and maleness are constructed out of the historic victories had over those who are defined by their exclusion from the winner's circle and its inheritances, that's your business. You shouldn't be surprised when people reach the obvious conclusion that you are well off, white, male and blind to fact that you were one of the inheritors. Think for a moment: what would all that unpaid labor look like, in terms of real capital and property, were it not taken from the not-male and not-white people who had to produce it, but could not decide how it was handed down, or what was built, sheltered, hidden away and protected by it. Think about unpaid household labor.Think about all the failures to remunerate. Actually, think. There's no spirit. There's no will. There aren't any numina. It's all just stuff, and stuff made into stuff. So, what would whiteness and maleness look like if it wasn't backed up by violent, brutal, deceitful misappropriation so bold and grand its called History? If you can't answer that question correctly, it's probably fairly unavoidable that you're a dude with pink skin.

Sep 8, 2012

Not Nothing

Men and women differ, fundamentally.

You can read this assertion from any number of pick up artists, anti-feminists, evolutionary psychologists, traditionalists, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Jews, holybookers, perennialists, conservatives, manarchists, Marxist-Leninists, anti-liberals or misogynist lawyer douchebags who really don't like Jews, homosexuals, "girly men" or the reality that some people identify with government because for the last thirty or so years it's been the wolf which has kept equally nasty wolves more or less at bay.

To be fair, Maoists (despite their many flaws) tend to be amenable to women who make decisions. Kind of.

I don't feel like linking to an example of each, so I'll just refer you generally to Manboobz, and the last year of output there. Seminal work, that.

An equally common complaint resolves to this: feminists are working mightily, from their lofty perches atop the human universe, to undermine, well, everything; but, especially the natural-supernatural-scientific gender differences that keep the cosmos in balance.

And you can tell this to be true, the argument's variations assert, because the universe is out of balance. Things aren't right. They aren't natural. If let be, the human norm would find itself again. Men would be men, women would be women, governments would wither away, corporate executives would self-defenestrate, markets would be fair, bigness would gave way to local smallness and motherfuckers would decide to be nice.

The problem, for these pitiable worm complainants, isn't that status quo ante is bad for most of the people stuck in it - it's that it isn't natural. (See also, primitivists, greenies, eco-pagans, democratizers and abolition democrats.)

Almost every assertion to naturality is, upon even rudimentary observation, a claim from transcendence. It's supernaturalist, because it attempts to impose from without definitions of right conduct, and wrong, which apply then to the within, also called "nature." The person staking that claim may not believe in gods or numina or dialectical historical planning committees, but he is demanding from the rough stuff of life an adherence to a norm which almost always suits his tastes, temperament and often enough, early childhood experiences.

But, contained within the complaint itself, is the concession what negates it.

The argument follows thus: if only [insert bête noir] didn't exist with its unnatural impact on human relations, [insert outcome clucked out disapprovingly] would not occur. If feminists weren't teaching women to be lesbian amazon man killers, girls would realize that they need to market themselves to men as better, more efficient sex toys. If the atheists hadn't taken over the schools, people would still know and love god. If the liberals didn't control the media [you are, of course, invited to scoff here], people would know that the government has violated the Constitution. Et cetera.

This seems like a simple enough declaration of cause and effect, but it's not. What it concedes immediately is that culture isn't a given, and that personality isn't merely inherited. That there is no natural, correct way to be human. If there was, there would be no reason to restore it. If the perennial were actually such, it would establish itself by virtue of its cosmic coherence.

Every argument about the shaping of hominid brains into bodies-with-personae recognizes immediately that what we call the "human self" is a made thing. It's an artifact, if you will. And that no right nature defines it.

Sometimes this self succeeds brilliantly, for its time; often, it collapses completely. Sometimes it doesn't sync with the body it inhabits, because it was shaped not for the body, but for needs of those around it. Very commonly, a single body houses several incompletely formed stages of one, in various degrees of struggle and accord. More often than soul-believers would care to admit, the self is in fact a multiplicity.

What matters here, though, is that it's made. It's a shaped thing that learns to shape itself. It's a shaped shaper. What this means - and it's a doozy given our larger culture, religious assumptions, scientistic premises and technological framework - is that everything and everyone are always up for grabs; the experience of self is not stable over time, because there is no norm for it.

The conditions which shape bodies into persons are always changing because there's no one correct way to accomplish this end, and truth has little to do with success or outcome.

The anti-feminists know this, perhaps without using this set of phrases exactly. Their complaint, reduced to its essential terms, suggests a basic awareness: women, like men, are made into self-referential genders. It's why these types constantly return to their tired, familiar refrain - that feminists violate nature in merely attempting to carve out the smallest of spaces where women can take some control of their own shaping. Where they can attempt these experiments without the unrelenting cultural subjection to men who have very strong notions about the proper uses of women. Not for nothing, anti-homosexuals and salvationists make the same concession - it's why they struggle so mightily to dominate the schools, the airwaves and the political contests which define acceptable and verboten.

So, here's this - and for what it's worth, I make no claim to revolutionary insight - there's no observable reason to believe in progress, given how often we all tend to regress, but it says something that the various traditionalists, paternalists and supernaturalists no longer argue as if they're right. They argue, right out in the open, as if they know it's all about who controls the story-making.

The RCC didn't use to have to try and persuade. It ordered, the Holy Orders obeyed. People burned and kings took a knee. Heads of state didn't use to have campaign. The cops didn't have full time public relations staff. People who used others as mere instruments didn't use to have to come up with market slogans and palliatives and misinformation.

The world was assumed to be, mostly by all, the best and only possible world. It was, you know, just natural and right that it was the way it was.

Most of us, I imagine, find that notion at least suspect, if not outright unnatural. Nietzsche called this the death of god. I won't be so bold, and rather refer to it instead as a kind of liberty. Our times are labile. The people trying to force human events back into the neat categories of caste, gender, faith, obedience and rigid class...well, they are trying to force things back.

Genies and bottles, cats and bags and all that.

They could definitely still win. They've got most of the loot and idiots who take orders under arms. But they're fighting from a distinct disadvantage, and one which doesn't require the rest of us to have so much loot, or armed staffers, or access to stable forms of power - they've already conceded, like the anti-feminists, that what they're really trying to do is to program the next generation, and the next, in ways which will re-establish "the right" and "the natural."

They've admitted, out loud and in public, that they're really just one more set of contestants, roughly aligned, in the struggle to define what is acceptably human.

It's a really big fucking deal, if you think about it. It's not that we're evenly matched. We're not, obviously. It's that, acknowledging that things are shitty as they seem, and worse, and that forces aligned in favor of reaction are well armed, they still have to regularly concede that "the natural" and "the right" are no longer a given.

They have to struggle to constantly maintain their claim on what is human.

There's an opening there. In fact, there are dozens of them.

And that's not nothing.

Aug 21, 2012


Expectation does not alter function.

The expectation of an outcome will not change the function of the tools used to achieve it.

The desire for an outcome bears little resemblance, upon close scrutiny, to the expectation for that same outcome. Training and memory produce expectations. An expectation premises that certain behaviors, plus a given number of tools and techniques, will result in a set of conditions which share overlaps and similarities with prior ends and conclusions, as promised by memory.

Organic memory lacks the reliability often associated with it. Cultural and exosomatic memory do not exist in a separate plane or protected bubble, untainted by organic memory. It takes organic memory, conditioning and perspective to interpret those memories stored outside of the body.

In every personal history, desire predates awareness, training and memory. Desire does not even presuppose awareness, though awareness would not likely develop without the recording of the memories of the satisfaction or thwarting of desire.

Awareness maps environment, but it does not take the same form in every person, or across every region or age. In order to identify awareness, memory must function, and feedback to and upon itself in a loop. No memory, no self awareness.

But, memory lacks reliability. Memory has no built in reward for enduring accuracy. Memory does not demand perfection. Memory rewards success, which definition itself does not remain stable over days and months, never mind years and ages. Memory, like desire, exists for outcomes which do not obligate truth, and which patently award error, so long as error results in the satisfaction of needs and desires.

Desire functions with memory, retaining its effect through memory's mapping of success and failure, strengthening and waning according to expectation - but memory will not record perfect facts separate from the feelings of reward, pain, pleasure or other strong emotions.

Desire reminds of need or want, but does not itself satisfy either.

The desire for an outcome will rely on memory to promise its satisfaction, or warn against failure, but memory - especially untrained memory which stumbles about unconditioned by an alternate and uncommon set of skills associated not with self-preservation and gross satisfaction but instead with self-regard and even vanity - will not reliably predict the conclusion of behaviors and choices if the satisfaction of desire or need forms the greater part of the feedback loop of awareness.

No person escapes desire. Not one.

And this adheres especially to the desire for outcomes associated with the use of tools, techniques and human memories.

Social communities function as tools, in part, for their members. They exchange persons as organisms into persons as resources. Every form of society or community, however enduring or temporary, obligates the use of unreliable memory, in order to map out relations of power, skill sets, persona, likeability, adversity, enmity and fealty. These memories lack both stability and permanence, as well perfectibility.

These memories form the basis of all hierarchies. A hierarchy functions as a trainable, and learned, set of responses to others by way of the repeated and reinforced forging of memories - establishing dominance not as a natural or supernatural condition* of existence, but as damage to memories already susceptible to error.

A person may expect the satisfaction of desires which that person cannot achieve as a repeatable outcome precisely because that person's memories produce patterns of errors which reinforce the likelihood of programmed blind spot, bias or self-betraying behavior.

A person raised within a hierarchy will very predictably and regularly reproduce these errors from the exercise of desires continuously thwarted by abused memory. Only those persons in the power positions of a hierarchy retain successful behaviors, because their skill sets allow them to train memory to preserve the hierarchy while still allowing them to see how it functions to reproduce in its support layers - and victims - the behaviors that keep them from seeing what those in power see. They learn to maintain a system which they must also actively conceal.

Most people in the power positions of a hierarchy will receive the correct training which allows them to duplicate its existence into future generations. By accident or by the seemingly random development of necessary character traits, some will climb, lie, flatter or claw into better positions. These types often present an initial danger to that hierarchy, unless its training allows for their easy assimilation, or expulsion.

A hierarchy functions as a social tool.

The use of a tool obligates the experience of an outcome of its use. Tool use will result in an outcome in every imaginable circumstance, because tool use alters environments - but that outcome will not necessarily match expectations or memories of the tool's user or users.

A person should not perhaps expect that the use of a hierarchy will result in outcomes for which that hierarchy does not function.

A good way to illustrate this, maybe, would involve brushing one's teeth with a chainsaw. The desire for clean teeth exists. The expectation of the outcome, also. But not every tool will produce the outcome expected and desired.

A person can apply a chainsaw to his teeth.

We might all find it rather surprising if this decision to so actually cleaned them.

Perhaps equally surprising, all the same, is the very persistent conviction that hierarchies which function to preserve the power and wealth of their members, by subsuming others into them as less-than-human instruments, will somehow magically produce fairness, universal prosperity, rights, accord, peace, liberty and justice for all...

* - despite the claims of perennialists or their liberal adversaries, the meritocrats...

Aug 11, 2012


I had a temptation to write, "Americans have forgotten the feel of war," but truths in the need of telling, that sounded a lie in my head, before I ever wrote it.

The last two wars fought hard on this continent produced a triumphant, and yet equally morose religiosity, coupled feverish and desperately with a stern national faith in the right to expand limitlessly; two senses of life clutching at each other like a pair of illicit lovers tucked into a piss soaked alley, more grappling for dominance than making love.

The War For Slavery and the Indian Wars. And Americans still stamp the seemingly endless ramifications of those contests upon the skins of others.

But, we don't know war.

We don't understand the wake of death and chaos, the sundering of families, the breaking of heart and spirit, the degradation, the shattering of human perspective, the hardening of hatred.

We can't even remember it, because our faiths have no roots in memory. They burrow, instead, into the morrow, nematodes of belief seeking out new flesh and new victims for our devotions.

If you don't hate this America, this complex of ideas and beliefs and redemptive, holy violence, I say to you that you should know firmly now what side you've chosen. And that you should suffer it.

I want nothing more fervently than for war to come home. To tear this nation of 300 million predators and prey animals into tattering shreds. I want us to learn what it's like to be an Iraqi child, who watched her mother scurry towards the market, wincing at bomb blasts in the distance, and who never saw her come home. I want us to feel Hiroshima, Dresden, all of Vietnam, the Philippines, the Lakota, Arapaho, the Comanche, the Colombian and Argentine peasants shackled to the needs and ugly urges of Catholic putchist paramilitaries, Africa savaged Africa, to feel what we never even managed to learn to forget: war.

Until no more America ever lends its name to even a square inch of earth.

Even that would not come close enough to what we've taken wheedled, wrought and bought - returned in due and debts paid.

We have nothing worth saving. We should dream of no pale reflecting wings of angels, come to redeem us. Had we humanity at all, we would raise the white flag and let world have its vengeance, passive witnesses to our earned destruction, mute and without complaint.

But we lack that humanity, we Americans. We do not strangle our bosses and cops where they sleep. We do not take to the streets or the beaches, to echo even the flimsiest of French protests. We certainly have no Greek in us. The young of Egypt shame us, and they struggle against a reactionary Islam and capital's endless succession of martial juntas.

And we do not walk away.

So, war should come. And come, and keep on washing over us until we've left so little to remind our victims of the days of our dominion, that they can raise their heads and pity our remnants.

Aug 2, 2012

Or not

I have less to say, and fewer words with which to say it. I feel healthier for the first time in several years. I've managed to shed forty-five pounds since January, thirty-five of them since the first of May. I have my runs up towards the double digits, which has taken almost forever since a pair of fairly awful ankle injuries and a tumble down the side of a tall hill.

My kids still have to put up with me, and my wife is still foolish enough to go to bed next to me most every night.

The world still sucks.

And the fucking rich keep getting fucking richer.

But, being healthier does change the outlook some.

More on that later. Or not.

Jul 3, 2012


Please take a moment to read Jonathan Versen's "Fixing Health Care Good." It's one of the better summations, and is nothing short of an antidote to nauseating shit like this: "If you love him, be proud of him."

Jun 19, 2012

Sitting Vigil

My wife's mother has lived a life worth living. This must be written, repeated and said again. A generous, patient, wonderful woman, who transformed a life always on the edge of poverty into three daughters and a son who adore their mother.

That her children have had to sit vigil and watch her die slowly, over the past three days, because some god-sots think it's the penultimate evil to ease her impending death with a little extra chemistry - I cannot wrap my head around this. There is the cruelty of the torturing-small-animals variety, and then there is the methodical, institutional, traditional malice of the enforced vision of correct humanity. I'd rather deal with the cat killers than with the moralizing didacts in control of vast systems. You can always punch the budding lone sociopath in his motherfucking face.

How in all the unchrists do you negotiate with a sanctimonious, callous culture?

The "culture of life" is anything but, those overripe and self-righteous prick motherfuckers. Sure, they may not be as breezily hypocritical as Obamaphiliac liberals, or as comfortably compartmentalized as the Clinton fans who've embraced a spectacularly academic cognitive dissonance as their operational norm - but, right now I don't fucking care.

Watching my wife watch her mother die slowly, gasping for breath, with an inhumanely small dose of dilaudid seeping into her from the skin patch is fucking unbearable. It's wrong.

And it cannot stand.

Jun 7, 2012

Sixty Three Point Five

...million. That's the mountain of money spent to engage in electoralism in order to strengthen Governor Walker's control over the Wisconsin political machine, propel him into the national spotlight, and transform him into an icon of the austerity movement.

Most of that was raised for Walker - a sum he would not have been able to accumulate if the unions, protesters and activists who sidetracked themselves with electoralism had decided that the better way to handle government is opposition.

Obviously, not everyone is willing to accept the basic outline or tenets of the anarchist outlook. But, it should go without saying that wasting energy, time and treasure in order to leave one's enemy in a stronger position is more than just this side of stupid.

And that's electoralism in a nutshell: stupidity. It's distraction, a legerdemain. Sure, the enforcement of laws equals something like results, and getting control of a temporarily captive hierarchy - such as a state government - buys an opportunity to enforce laws. 

None of that changes the basic social environment for the better, since it strengthens the position of those hierarchies, and they are always most easily captured by the people with the loot, the armed staffers and the resources.

In other words, the rich.

Fighting them on their ground is dumb.

Which isn't to suggest that they should not be fought, if that's the sort of thing a body needs to do and accomplish.

Just be fucking smart about it, already.

Get 'em while they're sleeping in their beds and make it fucking count. It's that, my friends, or what comes next. And next is the part where they start to triage us (the name of the austerity game) on the way to planning our obsolescence.

The class war has entered a new phase. It's plain to see if you want to see it. The factions of the ruling class are no longer trying to discipline labor, corral us into captive populations, nationalize our sentiments, Church us up in order to get us to police ourselves or crush rebellions.

They don't have to do any of that anymore. They won that series of battles, and we now live immersed in spectacular society. Our chains are affordable and they've persuaded us, from early universal education onward, through the ubiquity of product placement and television advertising, to absorb the cost and the weight of those bindings ourselves. We don't have them placed upon our lives involuntarily, as did the peasants and rough burgher dwellers of long departed ages.  We are not bound up in the thrall of continentally uniform salvational anxiety, ministered and managed by Holy Mother Church, or the Confucian bureaucracy.

We pay for our own servitude, and call it lifestyle and standard of living. Our anxiety is wholly situational.

That's the spoils of their victory, and they've been reaping it for the better part of two generations. They have more of the loot, all of the land, most of our minds, and many of our fears bundled into a stage show economy that keeps afloat, in large part, because we pay to eat to rent to fuck to sleep to breathe to drive to live and...

...that has kept them in riches right up to the point where the Second Law refuses to budge. Which is where skimming off some of the excess factors into their policies and agenda.

We bought them their independence from a dependency upon our labor, or the greater share of it. We've entered a new theater of war. And it is war. It's fucking war, and please don't think otherwise or forget it. There's no longer even the intimation or pretense of a division of competence, skill, equality or treasure. They have it all. And austerity is about their revolt against our labor. They don't need it anymore. They don't need us.

We've moved beyond the struggle for class dominance. It's done. It's fucking over. Now, we have a war of extermination, and that's not easy to see, because it's being fought within the confines of our expectations. It has the appearance of our enculturated normality. It looks like what surviving is supposed to look like, in conformity with our learned and education programmed anticipation.

It's anything but that.

They're counting on the majority of us being too weary, wary, distracted, stressed and burdened to figure it out. Really, they are. That's the point of spectacle. Because, for a while yet, we have the one thing they lack.

We have multitude. We are multitude. Disorganized, selfish, venal, shortsighted - all certain, and predictable. That's how we've been raised, and that can only change with time and practice. But numbers and numbers, we've fucking got those; there aren't enough uniformed thugs to prevent every knife struck in the dark of night, or every kind of cooperation. The knife must strike, but the food must also be handed from palm to palm, and back again. It must be taken. Because it doesn't belong to them. Nothing they have is theirs. It's ours. It's our labor. These are our children they want to strike from forever.

This is a world made by our hands.

We've got a fuck load more than sixty three million of them. The hand is potent. It's a promise between companions, and it's the first of all weapons.

Especially when the hand is red with the realization that we're long past the point of no return, and there's less and less to lose. They don't know it yet. And neither do we, not between us. But, their revolt is also our liberation.

And it won't cost sixty three point five million dollars to start getting it. Their future isn't secure yet. The governments are still being transformed. The armies, halfway through reconfiguration. Their costs are still high enough, that adding to them can break them.

Open your hand, and pass the plate. Close it into a fist. Grasp a hoe and plant an acre. Show a friend how to hold a knife. Take fruit without paying for it. Punch a motherfucker in the face. Hold a thousand of them up and block the cops from reaching their destination. Shield a child.

Sneak up in the night and make the motherfuckers pay.

May 31, 2012

The past is as unmovable by mind as are the stars.

1. The stars are the past. They happened before. This is not figurative. It is literal. We are constrained by relativity. The night sky is the lingering lost, part of our present because the "past doesn't go anywhere." Perhaps a fool would argue that the stars mean nothing: they mean everything. We are seeded by their dying. But... Scrying the night sky and the stars for signs and wonders, for clues to the fate of the universe, is no more effective than shitting in one's pants and flushing the toilet anyway. The past is prologue, sure. Also, it is not. Interconnectivity is myth. It's a story told against the inexorability of death, a facile consolation. Things come apart. What happens in Boston may never matter to the child starving in Dhaka. The stars don't care. Events accumulate and the child is forgotten.

Photons do not decay, in the human lifetime. Photons do not decay, over the course of terrestrial ages. We decay. We are brief. Staggeringly meaningless, from the vantage of photons and stars. A single life can be suffered, until waking is work, and breathing too much a burden to bear. A photon feels nothing. And the past, these photons forming wave fronts against our eyes, still didn't go anywhere. Every molecule bound together to make a body is the past made present. We can study them, learn. Make predictions, record data. We do it with cells, we do it with the stars. Awareness and memory, nonetheless, are not morality. The past does not teach. It does not evolve. Progress is fiction, dialectic is deception. Photons do not arise from synthesis. Trees grow by bifurcation. As do crystals, and human memory. Things split, to grow. They do not encounter their opposites and unite. The past tells no stories, it has no narratives. Events expand, they layer upon the memory, and most things happens without a mind ever knowing it. There are seven billion human bodies. Not a one of them can tell you the complete history of a square meter of soil.

2. It is stupidity to read the past, to build up and fascinate with the meager, mean stories of this or that notion, trend, government, commodity or faith, to map what is not by what came before. Events happen, and it's equally stupid to pretend they do not. Learn them, or not. You'll still need to eat, shit, sleep. You will still die. That's how most of us live, and we are not the lesser creatures for it. The past is as immovable by mind as are the stars. It hasn't gone anywhere, and most of what was made within its fluctuating contours will outlast the lot of us. By millenia. Some still have a need to know, a compulsion to draw value and validity from the pursuit of the past, forward into its consequences for the dimly understood present. It is a compulsion, an obsession. It can be useful, or not. Knowing the that red giant will nova does not prevent its destruction. Studying historical trends will not obviate their development. History is an astrology. Fiddle with it, if it makes you happier. Mostly, it will not. The termites will chew the wood, the roaches will scatter, mold will weaken the beams, water will find the cracks in the concrete, winter will come, and the housing unit will one day fall in on itself. A child will grow up elsewhere. She will be different from what she might have been, but might have been never was.  The now, the current, is always passing and memory barely maps the hint of it. It is the arrogance of a self-obsessed stupidity - a mind as its own mirror, imposing a fragile order on a world which does not obey it - to assert the primacy of history, to shelve lives like books and demand from the future a conformity to a past which doesn't care because it never was as we imagine it and never went away, anyway. Events happened, but our stories barely tell their impact. We are encompassed by our ignorance. It's too soon, far too early, to tell ourselves that we know enough to fix, fashion and shape into permanence the best of all futures.

The outlines drawn by the mind, the old gods and constellations, depend upon the distance between the stars, not their proximity. Most of history is the told in the same way. It is outline, making sense of the impossibly dense and unknowable by fabricating snippets and cataclysms into fables. Coincidence occurs, and these stories overlap with patterns in the memory, accumulations from experience that suggest a rightness, but which only communicate the appearance of similarity.

3. The past is not right or wrong. Neither is the present. The future, on the other hand, is almost always peopled with moralities. We arrive to find it fleeing us. Disappointed, abandoned, injured by its inevitable faithlessness. Our achievements fade: memory and bad conscience conspire to form a despotism. Over and over again, we resolve to promise ourselves a better tomorrow. Perhaps it's uniquely human to treat disappointment as a goad, and the goad as a call to be better, to perfect, to be more good. It is from this belief in betterment, this urge to improve, that most human evil is done. It's never enough to discipline one's own memory, is it? The bombs fell on Belgrade and Baghdad because men thought that they could profit by it, that in profit they would improve. A mass obsession for an age of mass spectacle.

School, church, temple, masjid, courtrooms, cop dramas, prison cells, op-eds, fairy tales, movie scripts, television plots, sermons, advertising campaigns, expectations humble and grandiose - they all fix into place the fascination with improvement. It's not enough to learn and let go. It's never enough to wander. Meaning is added, belief is confirmed, narratives are introduced to too-young brains. Poisonous, pervasive, spreading like plagues and killing frosts, following the merchant princes, the politicians, the generals and royal scientists, the urge to improve the whole of the face of the earth until every life is fitted into its place, if only at first by name.

4. The past tells no stories. We tell them. We have the capacity to tell them differently. There aren't many freedoms, really - but this is one of them. I don't know if it's enough to begin with a rejection of improvement, with the morality that demands a singular futurity. Maybe not, and that's okay with me.

Epilogue. I'm also okay with the guillotine, the noose and their use as an answer to the inflicters of widespread suffering, so grano salis, if you need it. Violence does not cure, and most acts of vengeance make things worse for somebody unintended as its recipient. There is no perfection, and we already have to live with with our contingency, conditionality, limitation and mortality. I do know, in moments of some provisional clarity, that compassion is one of the more finely made lenses through which to watch, as long as it tempered by the ability and capacity to resist, to strike and to elude those who would harm.  Moral pacifism, like national militarism, Christianity, or evangelical veganism, is an attempt improve others for one's own benefit, to collect them up and constrain them by belief. It's an urge to cure, and a reasonable person has a thousand reasons to mistrust it on that account alone. It does not follow that retribution makes anything better, either. Retribution does not improve. But, it can remove. And that is a tool which should not be discarded lightly.

May 20, 2012

Musings, after ocean's edge...

Went to Hampton Beach with the family today. People watched with the wife. Some (probably commonplace) observations:

1. Beach wear for women differs fundamentally from that for men; it is even opposed. Male beach clothing emphasizes by what it does not cover, signaling the male as natural. Female beach wear draws attention to what is covered, forming the female figure as that which can only be revealed by hiding it. The conventions of dress carry a heavy load: the female is created by artifice, the man by revelation. This is what, I think, feminists mean by patriarchy. It's no wonder that, pervasive as this underlying etymology of self is, societies continuously reproduce the idea of woman as a vessel of sin. Since correct womanhood is fabricated and manufactured, within these cultures, any woman who cannot abide by the norms (and this is nearly all of them) must not only be lacking, compared to men, but morally and spiritual deficient. She is, according to the rules of behavior, formed wrong; it is her native state: consequently, she must be governed and corrected, lest she produce more sin, and perhaps even more egregiously, sinful children.

2. Small children do not understand states, as ways of relating, until they are taught to internalize rules and rule structures. The state is not simply or automatically native to human existence. It is a replicator. A small child will play with what's at hand: stones, waves, dogs running and frolicking. She will dig holes or kick sand or give chase. A child is a war machine before he is acculturated to the community in force.  Small children play games by revision. They adapt to environment, even in conflict. Rules are not vital because play is immediate. It may have outcomes, but it does not have objectives. It is only when the child is taught to play within the field, to build walls for the sand castle, and to respect the property and victories of other players (especially adults) that the child begins to understand the self as a state of existence, as a pattern which must be repeated in order to be experienced. This is, I believe, the fundamental vector by which the state is replicated: the self gains an interior which is governed by repetition. It becomes a kind of disorder.

3. Marxists will never let the state wither away, because they are statists. Like Christians, they can only conceive of the conclusion of the revolution (an attainment of heaven) as achievement of a fixed end which must then immediately be shielded from the consequences of an absence of fixity inherent in material existence. Despite rhetoric and theory to the contrary, every Marxist attempt to produce communism has resulted in a state in which every subject must subsume itself or be rendered into enemies. The Marxist answer to the problems presented by entropy, contingency, friction, uneven distribution and conflict is spiritual. It is, in contravention of every claim to historical materialism, the distribution of obedience by way of force, according to rules which would be supernatural in the hands of an imam, rabbi, cleric, monk or priest. The Marxist, as a rule, demands a set of behaviors, hoping to reconstitute society according to a plan which must result in a single possible future, or else be betrayed. It is not surprising that Marxists, taken generally, lack the vitality and adaptive capacities of their capitalist opponents and masters. Capitalist relations form a sense of self which assesses its relations to others and its environments according to costs and labor, reshaping the sand kicking child into a buyer-seller through the disciplining rules and enforcements of family, education and workplace discipline. This means that the capitalist formed self is an operating platform which allows for an interior. The self so shaped must have a fixed fictional center, or it cannot trade its labor, expect reward or calculate costs. It needs this imaginary independent agent which can manage the limits imposed by matter without believing itself subject to them. To relate to others as commodities, a portion of self must be secure enough to resist economization and subsumption. It must shield the single personality* as a compartment which can not only buy and sell, but see others as consumable units of labor without collapsing inward under the weight of its own contradictions. Unlike the child who has not yet calibrated its memory to reproduce the relations of the state, first in the family and later in school, the capitalized self demands a protected inner life. In response, and by way of development in the standing pools of oblivion and despair in which it evolved, the Marxist and Leninist conception of self attempts to abolish this interiority by making it utterly subject to the revolution and the state it subsequently produces. The Marxist body has no imagined interior because it demands the creation and recreation of the state in all interactions, totalizing the self as the subject of each and all. Despite Marxist theory to the contrary, the interiorized capitalist self, with its private memories and trade-able experiences and labor, will not arrive at the Marxist self by way of some spiritual synthesis.This capitalist self, the Marxist rightly understands, is an abomination: it no longer remembers how to run into the waves without producing first a reason to do so, with objectives defined, and benefit to be taken. Sadly, the general Marxist solution is even more monstrous: it is a self which has the state as both its interior and its exterior, replicating obligation into every interaction, until the human world is only chains.

4. The anarchist, as a type, presents any number of problems, not the least of which is a studied refusal to believe that men will do their worst, despite crafting a worldview which rejects the concentration of power, and hierarchy, because men are always doing their worst. All the same, the anarchist can offer an alternative to the capitalist and Marxist states, and the selves they reproduce over and over again. The anarchist is kinetic, potential. The anarchist cannot produce a program of action, a plan for the future, or a schema for correct human behavior; instead, the anarchist can play a way towards a number of possible futures, by acting as a corrosive. The anarchist can simply refuse to obey. This takes the anarchist closer to the nihilist than is comfortable for most workers in light and doers of good (be they liberal, conservative, Marxist or libertarian**). The anarchist can remind those trapped in the memory-shaped selves of our society that the state dissolves at contact with with the waves at ocean's edge. That it can be dismembered by remembering to forget it.

* - we should say, single personality disorder...

** - the libertarian is silliest of all; he thinks the ruling factions who manage the appearance of states will remain contained within those advertised limits, will obey their own marketing campaigns and propaganda, so long as men do good and speak honestly one to the other...

May 11, 2012

No Escape

This one is by request, if somewhat revised. So, for d. mantis:

It does no good to underestimate the widespread human capacity to burrow deeper into hierarchies and their controlling systems, in the name of escaping them.

Our libertarian fellow travelers are especially fond of asserting, as a characteristic of that entire American school of thought, that governments are awful. In this they are largely correct, since governments exist to serve the needs of those who can afford to constitute them, run them, maintain them and benefit by their operation. Unfortunately, this libertarian willingness to generalize about the organization of governments as thinly disguised protection rackets does not extend to the necessary and inevitable concentration of power, wealth and bad faith in those successor organizations which would follow the collapse of the state-as-Leviathan. Intent as they are upon dismantling and escaping one obvious despotism, libertarians at the same time rather studiously ignore the more direct consequences of the weakening of the welfare functions of the states we have now; chief among those ramifications is the accelerated transfer of wealth, armed staffers, expertise and training functions to corporations, transnational exchange regimes and market affiliations, a one way flow which would result in the eventual reconstitution of states and state-like hierarchies from within corporate associations.

Then there are the liberals.

The entire liberal discourse - the "progressive" expansion of rights - which followed from the so-called Enlightenment and is only very recently in any danger of collapsing into its own singularity of self-contradiction, depends upon a belief in an absurdly unrealistic core conviction: namely, that those who inhabit the higher reaches of hierarchies can be persuaded to relinquish their advantages. It is only by accident, or that curious admixture of happenstance and callow opportunism, that the democratic-seeming states' histories have coincided with the increase in the number of permissions (usually, called "rights") allowed to the educated and professional castes and classes, which factions cling most religiously to this ridiculous notion of permissive rights. That coincidence has had a profound effect upon their beliefs about the power of "the masses," the value of the allegedly isonomic individual to those with power, and the degree to which lower level chattering and nattering filters upward to those who rule. But, because we live in the last decades of universal education - the one true victory of the middling castes - their "rights" dogma has become the universal doctrine foisted upon the multitude, shaping their discourse, if not their everyday conduct. That the lowest orders of our current society live as if rights are unreal is a testament not to the failure of universal education, but to the brutalizing and liberating agoge that is daily contact with the sharp end of police powers and the clerk's faceless bureaucratism.

The ruling class and its factions don't hear the middlers, and don't care about their problems, in equal measures. They have nonetheless fashioned a clever political apparatus, whereby they pretend to listen to their support classes by taking their money and distracting them with elections. It is a banal and unremarkable observation, but: the middle classes are obsessed with it.

By comparison, our earthly lords and masters can be expected to be "persuaded" with violence, but only in so much as it gets their attention by threatening their wealth and property.

Since violence against one's better armed betters is always a dodgy prospect, at best, and generally a ticket to press gangs, prison houses and cemetery plots, as a norm - it should probably surprise no one that the compensatory middler response, the reemergence of the repressed, if you will, is the aforementioned belief that rights matter, and that yammering at the people with guns and money gets their attention.

May 2, 2012


I wanted to punch the young dude in the face the first time I saw him. It wasn't rational; I didn't have mystical hunches or anything, but I felt a demiurge towards violence. I saw his creepy, vaguely Tartar blue eyes, and I had to choke down a strong, pleasing compulsion to punch him in the peepers until he bled from his ears.*

Lots of motherfuckers could use a punch to the face bones; it's not like I think I'm the one who has sanction to deliver the fist shaped gift.

My wife, upon meeting him several weeks later, told me that she was pretty sure there was something wrong with him. "Dead eyes," she said. "Dead motherfucker inside."

I told the weary boss man, a friend of more than two decades. He chuckled a bit, but I could read the perturbations in his brow. Shut up, shut up, shut up broadcast in forehead wrinkles.

"There's something about him," I said.

"Nah. I think he's a good kid."

"Nope. I'm telling you, he's all bunched up wrong inside."

"Leave it alone, Jack."

"Okay, man, but..."

...Wandered in to work, end of last week, trying to figure out how I managed to get an extra shift on the next few weeks.

Mr. Creepy was off the schedule. Staff talking in euphemisms. I didn't want to know. I don't need clutter in my brain space. I get results on Friday, maybe a death sentence. I don't need to care about why a fish-eyed leerer isn't coming to work anymore. Whole shift passed, and I manage to elude the whispered gossiping.

"Matter of public record," a co-workers tells me, today. I don't normally have to work Thursdays. Was trying to get ahead of the deliveries, figure out what I needed to do different. Mr. Heebiejeebies comes up, 'cause I'm covering a shift for someone covering his shifts.

"I don't want to hear scuttlebutt," I said. "Don't care. Don't want to know." But I can feel it's something. Something which validates the original need to break his face into puzzle pieces of former facial features.

"Matter of public record."

Fuck me. I know I'm going to google-fu his name, the minute I'm told.

I get through my day. Youngest to karate we can't afford. Oldest harangued into playing his instruments. Me, finishing laundry.

All the chores done, kids to bed, wife off her feat and trying to sleep - I sit down to type his name into little window with the magnifying glass, top right on the screen.

Rape. Of a minor younger than thirteen. Forcible rape. Assault and battery. On a child. Rapes which go on for four years. According to the court documents, it takes her a decade to work up the courage to report him. It takes another six years for the case to wind its way through the courts, until a decision is reached which allows him to be prosecuted. Six more months before he has to go home to face his accuser.

Fifteen years. Fifteen years that girl had to wait to seek the pale shadows of justice and make her peace with the leavings left to her.

I'm an anarchist. I don't think in terms of cops and judges and lawyers and calibrated punishment. I prefer the unmediated. The immediate. I reject the sham of justice, the same way I dismiss the damaging fictions of gods and money and the State. Believing them makes material, but that doesn't mean they're concrete.

Fifteen fucking years.

Fuck that. That shit is cruelty made flesh.

Maybe I'm too facile about violence, but fucking aye, I can't help but believe that giving her the space and the acceptance for whatever retribution suits her needs is so much better than sacrificing more than half of her life in the pursuit of a fiction of justice. She ends up the sacrifice, that way. That's the way of justice. To sacrifice the victims again and again, as a justification for the power accrued to those who arrogate for themselves official punishment.

She has had to endure, while he wanders free.

He got fifteen years of respite and reward. She got what?

I know some of what she's had to face. The way it weighs down on the medulla itself. How thoughts and emotions are reshaped around the seed of violation. Living with the death of trust. With the intimate knowledge that nothing is restored. Love transmuted into vigilance. Vigilance always sharing a border with violence. Playful touches faked, because it's all so much labor.

It took her a decade to accuse.

That can't be held against her.

But his fifteen years of unearned life can be held against him. They ought to be. Maybe not with prisons and worm eaten words about justice.

I'm thinking the guillotine. Or a noose. Or being repeatedly run over by a forklift.

Maybe, instead: a sacred place. Made holy by its profanity. A place where victims can bring their violators. Where they can, like Maenads, tear Pentheus limb from limb over and over again. A single Pentheus. A thousand thousands of them.

A whole new religion, even. 

Spreading like spilled wine and wilding fires.

* - in the interests of disclosure, he is belligerently Jewish. You know the type. Militantly Hebrew. With anti-drug paraphernalia on his personal items of clothing. A straight edger Zionist. But that doesn't usually fill me with the need to launch an uppercut. I write about the justifications for violence, but I'm fairly shy, retiring and measured out in the meat life of public existence. Angry Jewishness doesn't offend. It embarrasses, like a bad joke told poorly and with no sense of timing. Comedic schadenfreude might follow, but not violence.

Apr 20, 2012

Make Me A Sandwich

"Make me a sandwich."


"That's the new bro thing, dad."

"At school?"

"Yeah. And elsewhere. It's the new put down."

"Like, 'make me a sandwich' is a dismissal? Why? Is it because..."

"...girls make sandwiches for boys, Dad. It's a 'women belong in the kitchen' and 'bitches make sandwiches' thing, Dad."

"But it's said by dudes to other dudes?"

"Yeah, Dad."

So, yeah. Let's be clear. These are fifteen, sixteen, seventeen and eighteen year old boys. Future grown ass men. Future boyfriends, husbands, bosses, rapists and abusers. And just like last year, and the year before, and all the way going back to the first Sumerian priest-landowner's decision to mark a symbol for cattle in clay and trade out his daughter for the right to own more cattle in the future...it's the same as it ever was. And the way boys reinforce their place in the hierarchy is by treating their presumed inferiors...

...as women.

No surprise in that, of course. But it is nonetheless amusing to read, witness and watch men, dudes, broheemers and anti-feminists deny the pervasiveness of a nearly ubiquitous idea, that "woman" defines "inferior," and in doing so, sets the value for "governable."

Apr 19, 2012


To answer the questions and responses given in reply to the "Interrogatives" post below:

What differentiates victim and victimizer? The violation. It's a clear enough demarcation that we have separate words for the two poles of the relationship.

What justifies revenge? The choice to seek it.

What limit should a victim have imposed upon vengeance? None. There is no spiritual component to the universe which demands proportionality in retribution, or which punishes an over-reaction. If a person does not wish to have his dick chopped off for being a raping raper, for example, he should (a) not rape, (b) throw himself into a wood chipper, (c) self-defenestrate from a tall building or (d) drink a gallon or two of antifreeze, and then chase it with a glass or three of methanol.

Of course, this may seem to imply that victimizers should know better, but it does no such thing. A person does not have to know that others believe his actions to be characterized by wrongness in order for those actions to have consequences. In fact, I would submit to you that intentionality is a useless bellwether for judging the outcome of choices. Observationally, a rapist has raped regardless of his reasons. He doesn't have to know better. He has only to not rape. He has only to choose not to inflict harm.

And if that's the case, retribution is justified not by any urge to punish, correct or edify (which are silly Judeo-Christer obeisances to notion of sin)  - but by the simpler, cleaner and more manageable desire to requite harm because the original violation hurts.

Pain makes valid the victim's response, so long as he or she refuses to accept that pain should ever have been inflicted. Pain, in a cosmos where life is brief and nerve endings tuned to suffering, is the only justification a victim ought to require for herself.

Did he hurt me?


Then I may and perhaps even ought to hurt him back...


Can ethics be collectivized without compulsion?

If not, what's the point of them?

If so, how? As in, what are the mechanisms?

Apr 13, 2012


As a rule:

Conservatives see banks and financial institutions as rightful stewards of wealth, capital and currency. Unless they are run by Jews who are, sacrosanct Israelis excepted, liberals in good standing. Then, banks are of course institutions for the promotion of social decay. George Soros demands it...

Otherwise, for the run of the mill conservative, a bank is a force of nature, by which he means, immanent supernatural imposition. God ordained banks, in order for the rich to save up their hard work and rugged independence. How else will they "create jobs"?

Liberals understand banks as fundamentally necessary, but unfortunately prone to corruption and mismanagement; if only enough money is moved from banks to credit unions, the managing partners of banks and financial institutions will, obviously, come to their good senses and begin to make choices within the parameters of good corporate citizenship. The problem with a bank, for the average liberal, is not so much the concentration of wealth, but the temptations which that concentration brings to bear. For the liberal, the solution is to be found in struggling against temptation.

For the Marxist, a bank is a future instrument of the dictatorship of the proletariat, brought into existence by historically bound human efforts which couldn't violate the Mystical Dialectic, even if they tried. During the (duh, brief...) transitional phase from state socialism to blessed holy communism, the banks will be subject to strict five-year planning. Then, as if by magic, everything will become horizontal and the banks, along with the state, will "wither away." If you believe otherwise, please report for re-education.

For the anarchist, there already are no such things as "banks." What you see is a building, and people inside of it persuaded by their own business in fiddling with screens, ledgers and imaginary numbers to believe they are doing something, anything. What you see is really what you get, though. Everything to do with a bank is pretense, self-deception and fiction, however deadly.

Apr 5, 2012


When we - and by "we," I really just mean "anyone" - speak of social structures, what's being discussed are patterns of memory in the brain coupled with effort and labor. That this applies to structural racism, patriarchal relations, capitalist institutions and the like may or may not seem obvious, depending upon your temperament and ideology. These patterns of memory are acted out in material circumstances, and shaped again by those same interactions, so that society (what a loaded term, eh?) is a set of disproportionate feedback loops between belief and labor. It might not appear immediately clear that the abolition of the end-user material expression of these patterns - the kinds of labor which tend to reinforce beliefs - does not necessarily result in the abolition of the patterns of memory and thought. Work and effort reinforce, but they do not automatically and fatally determine the existence of beliefs. (I submit, for your consideration, the persistence of evangelically Christian beauty pageant parents, who make choices which routinely violate the tenets of their beliefs, without in any real way abolishing those beliefs as the lens through which stimuli are interpreted)

Social structures also persist in memory, despite the fact that the multitude of those who believe in their efficacy and concrete reality are not gainfully employed, devoted to, or in any way bodily attached to the actual, physical and material maintenance - to the labor - of their repetition. And it is repetition which gives the illusion of permanence or durability to these so-called structures. Observationally, there are no social structures to speak of - since these "structures" don't exist in the same way as even a rudimentary temporary cardboard shack exists, stands out and has tangible form.

A social structure - Congress, the nuclear family circa 2012, a corporation, the Marines, et cetera ad nauseam ad infinitum - is not a thing, despite the beliefs* usually associated with the assumption of its concreteness. A social structure is repeated behavior, and that repetition follows from the labor of performing in concert with others rituals, obeisances and shared work. And, no less effectively, accepting as true that the repetitions and rituals actually make a thing; passivity is not bar, here.

To attack, corrode, degrade or otherwise challenge the effectiveness of these repetitions of conduct and ritual, it is not enough to assume that a plenary future equality or revolution will do the trick. The presumed revolution is not an act of abolition. Revolution does not abolish. Revolution can only disrupt, and judging from the success rates of revolution the world and history over, not generally with significant lasting effect; even revolutions which re-assign the ownership of resource bases.

Personal and social memory continues and endures because it is repeated. Memory replicates. Since social structures are fundamentally the acting out of beliefs about the world, and since we are mammals who must learn how to become human**, social structures act as replicators. They capture the matter in a developing brain and convert it towards a use value, towards labor. It is not happenstance that those hierarchies which place a high premium upon education, religious instruction, familial edification and the development of children as future labor resources also replicate themselves over and over again with greater continuity and success. Furthermore, subcultures and demographic groups serve as reservoirs of beliefs which can, in short time, emerge out of relative isolation in order shore up, salvage or reinforce degraded social beliefs and rituals. Should you doubt this assertion, I would ask you to consider the rapid promulgation of anti-contraceptive beliefs (and organizations) in the face of alleged social progress for women, expanding outward like a moral pandemic from, until recently, isolated pockets of maximalist Catholic communities.

Against liberal, conservative and Marxist strains of thought - it might be wiser to premise any lasting change in human relations not upon the production and cloning of hierarchies, but upon the sustained disruption of the rituals, relations and repetitions which, when taken together, socially structure human behavior.

In other words, it is not the seizing of control which will break these chains. It is the breaking of the chains themselves.

* - or epistemes, if we want to get unneedfully fancy

** - "human" is not a value-neutral descriptor; it is perhaps the most loaded term in use

Mar 30, 2012

If you meet a man on the road, castrate him.

NH was once a model of abortion and reproductive freedom. It had no restrictions on abortion.

None. At all. Whatsoever.

That this was in large part due to the efforts of now Senator (but then Governor) Jeanne Shaheen has long endeared her to me, despite fundamental hostility towards career Democratics, politicians and wealthy faux-populists, not to mention a deeply personal dislike for a schoolmaster's voice that can and does crack glass when it's not lulling otherwise vibrant demons to their undeserved eternal rest.

Shaheen is no more, and we have instead the Keebler Elf (Governor Lynch, also a Democratic), who hasn't met a liberationist social policy he won't roll over on in the interests of political accord, favorable press and "NH's business friendly environment."

For those of you who care, it's Lynch who launched current proto-fascist darling of the right, Kelly Ayotte, into national fame by appointing her as NH's Attorney General in time for her to make her chops as the first AG to seek and obtain the death penalty in nearly a hundred years. Luckily for her, a black man killed a white cop and the rest was the history as we've all come to expect it.

Lynch* has been especially abysmal when it comes to abortion. He gave Ayotte his blessing to go all the way to Supremes, in seeking approval for a parental notification law. Over the last year, he has signaled his readiness to turn even more cheek to the Christianist zealots who took control of the NH General Court following the enactment of National Romneycare and the election of allegedly socialist Barack Obama.

They have not failed to oblige him his passivity, and in succession have passed five bills restricting abortion over the last two weeks. The General Court has passed a ban on "partial birth abortion," a bill requiring a 24 hour waiting period and "fetal development" counseling** with a 15 year jail penalty for breaking the law, created a means by which abortion "statistics" can be collected in order to further advance naked anti-woman and anti-abortion propaganda, given judges more time to rule against minors seeking abortions without parental consent, and in the dooziest of doozy woppers, banned all abortions past 20 weeks on the laughable premise of "fetal pain." This topping off decrees from the Executive Council defunding NH's already cash strapped Planned Parenthood, and a measure passed in January denying monies to any organization which performs abortions, even if those abortions are privately funded, which has the added benefit of putting NH's Medicaid money at risk, to the delight of glibertarians everywhere.

Lynch, whose greatest offense is a placid passivity, is obviously not alone in this odiousness. The Christer contingent in the NH General Court is strong in the lord, is backed by the fucking lunatics in the Freestate movement, and funded by the various national organizations who cannot manage to coalesce into formal god brigades without jamming the word "family" into their official names.

All this, leaving the fate of NH's women in the hands of the equally hateful NH Senate, a gallery of grifters, pompous fools and opportunists if ever there was one.

So that's that. From being the only state in this shitfuck Union without a single abortion law on the books at all, to being on the verge of joining the shitcrackers in Mississippi, Kansas, the Dakotas and Texas nearly overnight.

That's what the law and institutions get you. Set all the stupid dialectics aside. Turn off the spigot of noble rhetoric. Slay the chimaeras of good intentions. Put down the magic pony's bridle, and just pay attention. If there's a chance for the wealthy to capture a social instrument, they will. If there's an opportunity to use it to dump on the despised, it will be taken.

Each and every gods-be-damned time. Don't fucking doubt it unless you like playing yourself the fool. As long as the rich have their toys and peaceful sleep, they're going to get the governments for which they pay. And those hierarchies will always be used to alienate, to protect insiders by enforcing the existence of outsiders, and to secure the false scarcity we know as "power."

Right now, that means crippling the ability of women to exist in any way which even passively challenges those familial and social norms best suited to the maintenance of the extraction regime we call "America." As long as women are constantly fighting a rearguard struggle to merely define themselves as autonomous and even partially human, they are in no position to organize to challenge the familial structures which demand their unpaid servitude, upon which the larger accumulation rackets rest, and from which tomorrow's bosses and employees are produced.

The monstrous and life-sucking sanctioned family is the enemy of women everywhere. It is itself the beating black heart of misogyny. It is how women are turned into their own betrayers, working to survive in an environment inimical to their humanity by absorbing its values and training the next generation to mimic them. It is the means by which they are chained.

Every successful effort to impose mandatory families upon women is an act of war against them. It is nothing less than an attempt to domesticate them as service animals, to enforce their less-than-humanity as means to stealing their time, lives and labor.

And any man who supports these efforts is an adversary not only of women, but of human liberty itself. There is nothing that could be done to him in acts of resistance and rebellion and revolution he would not deserve.

If you meet that man on the road, fucking castrate him.

* - on paper, Lynch supports "abortion rights.' In practice, his tenure has seen an assault on women unmatched anywhere else north of the Mason-Dixon and east of the Ohio River.

** - counseling which requires language that claims a link between abortion and breast cancer


Mar 27, 2012

Not Shocked?

The human body leaves a lot to be desired. Heh, unintended bad pun. Still sick. Still wondering at the strange conviction that an allpowerfulallloving creator deity would invest so much matter into devising a fiendishly complex organism, the primary mode for which is suffering.

Anyway - in the coloring me not shocked category:

It remains entertainingly surprising that anyone is still bewildered by the observable fact that it's okay to gun down black men and get away with it, as long as the forms are obeyed and the black men in question meet the loose and nebulous criteria known as "threatening." This is only slightly more surprising than the feedback-and-self-awareness-free assertion that it's terribly wrong to buy and sell human labor, or to organize to do so for profit, until one points out that a lot of that labor is being done sexually and/or domestically by the almost-humans known as women. And then, well, obviously "free speech" and "free expression" near certainly trump the merely material conditions of women being purchased up for the "sexual" gratification of men with disposable income...

Mar 24, 2012

Little Man Rediscovers Highlandering

Oldest and I were discussing tropes and genre, few minutes ago, while watching WWE waiting for the rice to boil. I learned that he doesn't like horror (because it's "too confident in itself") and he doesn't like most drama, "because it's just the same plot, not believable." He prefers comedy and sci-fi, especially when mixed (see, "Paul"*).

Somehow, the latest installment of the "Predator" franchise - incuriously titled "Predators" -  came up, and he says, he says to me, "I liked it, but it was also full of itself. And then there's the problem with the eight dudes and one chick thing."

"Heh," I chuckled,"what about that bothers you?"

"It's not believable, for one. And two, every action or sci-fi movie is a bunch of well-muscled or beefy men all sort of going for the chick, and doing cruel and ridiculous stunts with guns, like that's what impresses women. Then everyone dies so that the main character can get the girl. Maybe a best friend survives but he's never in competition to get the girl, he's usually weaker, he's usually the brain."

"Heh," I laughed, again, my blogfriend, the Red Queen, calls "that highlandering."

* - of course, Paul is a perfect example of "highlandering."

Mar 18, 2012


Does the victim have liberty to strike back at the victimizer? What are the limits you would accept to vengeance, justice, the armed response? How would you, waving a magic wand, restrict the scope of that response? Where do you lay the boundary on the appropriateness of violence, if at all? At what point, in retaliation or retribution, is the victim satisfied?

(thanks to commenter mp for the thought provocation)


There's nothing like 79 degrees on the 18th of March in Northern New England to take a bit of the sting out of the rage and discontent.

Also, in no discernible way related to the weather, is it now evident that the powers-that-be in our Western sphere would very much like their subjects to believe that Iran is Keyser Söze, personified?

Mar 16, 2012

Faithless Mosquitoes Fail To Answer Prayer

Seems that a certain prayer to the Furies has come up short, and Georgio le Clooney is still using his acting talents to shill (perhaps inadvertently) for the eventual NATO militarization of the Sudan.

I won't dispute for a moment that Georgio is a fine actor with a repertoire of decent to good films behind him and to his credit. He may even mean well.


And it's a big "but."

The whole damned point of the Darfur/Sudan Crisis/Humanitarian Problem narrative is to fuck up the Sudan, bad, in order to fuck up Chinese state oil concessions in that country. Like nearly every other "humanitarian" dog whistle currently piercing ear drums and agitating loyal puppies - and you should check out For Want of A Nail on a related issue - what's going down in the Sudan was (a) manufactured by England, Israel and the US for (b) the sake of destabilizing the government* in Khartoum.

Let's revisit the background, again:

"...With foreign exchange reserves exceeding $1.3 trillion in the Peoples' National Bank of China , Beijing has begun engaging in active petroleum geopolitics with Africa as its main target and the Sudan-Chad region as its highest priority region on the continent. There appeared the line "a new front in the cold war" for possession of the main oil reserves—a war begun between the United States and China right after the American invasion of Iraq in 2003. So far, Beijing has played its cards more effectively than Washington . It is possible that Darfur will soon become the main field of battle for oil between the two giants.

Over the past few months, China has made a series of initiatives aimed at retaining control of the oil fields, even those that will be developed in the distant future, in one of the richest "black gold" regions in the world—the African continent.

China currently imports 30% of its crude oil from Africa . This explains the jump in Chinese foreign policy initiatives, which cannot fail to displease Washington . China provides interest-free loans to African nations, including Sudan , and uses its own funds to build roads, schools and hospitals, while the United States attempts to control the African economy through the World Bank and the IMF by setting harsh economic and political conditions. Not surprisingly, the Africans prefer to cooperate with China . In addition, whereas any American project in the field of construction, mining or production involves a long preparatory stage for infrastructure development to build restaurants and bars, schools and hospitals, hair salons and fitness centers for American workers, specialists and their family members, the unpretentious Chinese put up tents when they arrive and set to work the next day while establishing everything they need concurrently—barracks with showers and canteens..."

'The Chinese got an oil concession from the degraded Sudanese state, which state desperately needed the dough after it was drawn to a standstill in a ten year religious-civil war with UK-US backed rebels ruled by a vicious dictator.

Then, new rebels based in Tchad, using (surprise, surprise) US-EU backing, kicked up a fight right in the heart of the territory in which Khartoum had recently granted concessions to Beijing.'

So, when Georgio gets himself arrested to draw attention to the so-called plight of the Sudan, he's not doing the Sudanese people any favors. And assuming that he means well, which he probably does so in the same way that all square jawed handsome hams do, with their eyes on a lady prize, he still went and said this following that arrest:

"The goal for today is the same goal its been all along and will continue to be and not be accomplished today or anytime in the near future, but it's a job that we have to continually do which is raise attention; protest the idea of a government attacking and killing its own innocent men, women and children and allowing aid to get in now because in the next few months it could be the greatest humanitarian crisis in the world and thats the important thing."

Which, if it is really his concern to point out, I mean - c'mon Georgio, there are hundreds of prisons in the US where a government eats its own for profit and fun.

That's the point of government, Georgie Boy - to fuck people up long and hard enough that they think twice about complaining or making trouble for the dudes who've got the lawyers, guns and money. Governments eat their own. Capitalist ones. Marxist ones. Fabian socialist states. Corporate boards. All hierarchies. They exists to facilitate the consumption of the raw material of human lives in order to produce from those expended existences the limited issue, artificially rare luxury and enjoyment of the wealthy and their staffers.

And you should know that by now, Georgio.  Really, you should.

* - as a rule, destabilized governments serve human liberty; in the particular, not when its the great powers doing it to small powers in order to get at their stuff with greater future ease...

Broadcast Cares

Wife puts on the telly to catch the weather in the morning. That means a local ABC affiliate bleats its mindless blather into our otherwise...familial haven. We all have our vices. I read science fiction and fantasy, she cares about the weather.

Yesterday, unfortunately, we also ended up having this inflicted upon us, after the local weather flipped back over to the cow-farting noises which comprise the majority of Good Morning America's version of asinine badinage:

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

In case you were smart or clever enough to resist the lure of the merely foolish, and restrained yourself from clicking the "play" tab, the above is two minutes and fifty-two seconds of strained verbiage and breathless warning. GMA is worried for you, and for your children, and for the health problems caused by your endless capacity for stupidity.

A great danger has gone viral into the world.

No, it's not one of the biological nightmares cooked up by the Army at Fort Detrick. And it's not a video of Obammy getting a well earned strychnine pie in the eye, damn it.

It's the "cinnamon challenge." If you're wondering what that is - and you're not, because you're reading this blog, and clearly do not have better things to do with your time - watch the video. It's frightening. Shocking. Unseemly, even.

Youngish humans are filming themselves attempting to hold a spoonful of cinnamon in their mouths, for some number of seconds. It's turrible, I know. Dangerous. Stupid. The folly of the human condition, and all that.

Thankfully, we've got the balloon heads at GMA on the look out.

It almost reminds me of the time and effort they took to produce this segment on the dangers attendant upon signing the dotted line on the recruitment papers for the Army, the Air Force, the Navy or the Marines:

Mar 14, 2012

Arizona is where the batshit crazy takes a policy form

"A proposed new law in Arizona would give employers the power to request that women being prescribed birth control pills provide proof that they're using it for non-sexual reasons. And because Arizona's an at-will employment state, that means that bosses critical of their female employees' sex lives could fire them as a result."

Read the rest at Jezebel.

And by the by, this is what happens when "religious freedom" and "freedom of worship" become "freedom to impose god-sot Christianity on everyone"...again.

Problem with Christianity - and this is same as it ever was - is that it's got the original corporate poison pill embedded in its dogma and body politic: persecution. Tell a member of that cult of the sacred execution, "no," and he's got a new mission from Bog and his creepy, lurking motherfucker sidekick, the Holy Smoke.

Toxin and Antidote

Being raised as an ordinary working American is like being slipped a powerful but slow acting toxin, to which there is a common antidote. Sadly for the ordinary American, that antidote is a controlled substance, and is maintained in artificially short supply. And there are rules attached to its distribution, chief among them that an ordinary person must put in four to six decades of work in order to prove worthy to receive it. By the end of that period of time, the regular ills associated with staying in place, overworking a body evolved to wander, eating poorly, caring for one's own toxified children and taking meager entertainment have caught up with all but the worst of the allegedly best and brightest. And the distributors of the antidote, being frugal sorts when it comes to other people's existences, decide instead to find worthier recipients, leaving the strugglers and just barely survivors to find less effective amelioration for their poisoning.

Mar 13, 2012

The blind-violence of pacifism

I survived child molestation, severe and seemingly unending abuse, rape, being locked in closets and tied to ground for days on end, group homes, youth detention centers, involuntary commitment, foster care and being a ward of the State. I came out with strong views about what being passive, peaceful, pacifist and non-violent will get a person.

The first time I listened to a rape from across the group home sleeping hall, I had to choose between helping a person whose face I couldn't see, and getting a beating so bad I'd not only get punished for bringing attention to the house, but for costing the budget for my hospital care. I didn't exactly see it in those terms, at age fourteen, but I knew getting heroic wasn't going to earn the affection of the house staff. Or the raping rapist fuckers.

So, I chose to turn over and "ignore it," like all the other small kids who hadn't fully learned what it meant to be mean, self-reliant and vicious-as-a-defense. (I got there quick enough.) That was hard to abide in one's own self. The memory still cuts, and I'm not that boy anymore. Turning the other cheek was rational. It preserved my relative well being. But, it perpetuated the local system. Fucking hell, it did.

Anyway, I came up with a clear enough view of human depravity, cowardice and self-preservation. And of what and how much it takes to make the depraved suffer enough that they re-learn their essential cowardice. Those who've formalized their cruelty panic when it becomes personal, again. They lose their grip, because the grip has got them in its embrace. It's civilization itself, and it soothes and coaxes and coddles those who enforce its dicta.

The minority* of white, comfortable motherfuckers with vacation homes and private land lecturing the victims, the poor, the damaged, the abused, the raped, the herded, the harassed, the imprisoned, the exploited, the evicted, the institutionalized, the penalized and the discarded on what are and are not appropriate responses to victimization - that shit is rich. Literally. It takes a comparatively rich motherfucker to confuse the play-acting, submission rituals and lying of "civilized" society with any end to institutional depravity, inequity and the hierarchies which profit from the same.

You stop it by finishing off the people doing it and living off the proceeds of human suffering. You do the work, and leave it done and behind you.

And I say it's blind-violent to suggest otherwise. Pacifism is violence, itself. It's violence maintained by the posture of self-congratulation and ostrich avoidance, leaving the actual labor of resistance to people who can stand the smell of shit, usually because they've had their whole lives rubbed into the sewage of human cruelty. It's the privilege of the over spiritualized and the self-absorbed, lording over the victims of the system itself; a system which produces the safe protest as a distraction. A system which breaks a body down into persona and parts, and leaves the ghost of passion's disappearance behind as added insult, as the reminder of defeat.

It's the screechy embarrassment, this cluck-clucking faith of the fattened calf, at the refusal of the damned to learn its strictures and superstitions, to accommodate themselves to the small comfort of a moral superiority, in lieu of the materiality of a satisfying vengeance.

It's a preservative, this pacifism. It guarantees that those who feel strongly act weakly. That they codify cowardice into a prescription for self-regard. It negates rage. It mollifies hatred.

And leaves certain that those who do the worst suffer the least.

* - globally; most people lack the "civilized" self-deceptions about "civilized" goodness, talky-preachy pacifism, or the effectiveness of "witnessing for the truth" and other sentimental pap

Not 'blind violent,' but somewhere the other side of arson...

"Genuine Negro Jig," The Carolina Chocolate Drops

"Violence of the Sun," Wolfmother

"Folklore," Opeth

"Huma Bird," The Buffalo Killers

"Warpainting," The Myrrors

"Burning Mirrors," Lumerians

"Nothing Like You," Spiders

"White Hidden Fire," Weird Owl

"Let It Ride," The Buffalo Killers

Mar 7, 2012

Burn 'em all...

...every college, university, prep school, public school, voc-tech and kaplan learning center. All of 'em. To the ground. Or, more. And, worse. Then, remove any remaining top soil or greenery and give it to whoever wants it, so long as they have neither property and deed nor claim to any private land.

After, salt the ground what remains.

If you're interested in liberty, and freedom and the end of larger hierarchies, that is. Because school is Enclosure. It's literally enclosed space, from which the majority are excluded, regardless of rhetoric to the contrary. And as with other common human endeavors, discoveries and creations taken and captured into the folds of merit society, learning and education have been lifted up and out of the body of people and set aside as private enclaves or bureaucratic fiefdoms. School is how cruelty is commoditized in the flesh of its victims.

School is also where the tyrannies of the family are expanded and reinforced into the obedience routines of the citizen, soldier, shop-keep and employee.

It's how we are trained to separate into leaders and led. It's how the form of power perpetuates.

And don't get all nit-fucking-picky about your corner of academia, or cry "anti-intellectualism" or the rest of that wasted breath and finger clacking. The flame ain't intended for learning and figuring things out. It doesn't burn knowledge, or prevent its diffusion;  it doesn't obstruct the joy of a new thing, newly discovered.

It ought burn for the Enclosure itself, for the Enclosed space, where the mind is monetized and curiosity comes with a price tag.

If you don't like it, you know how your bread is buttered. And that you're an adversary and enemy of human freedom, of an easier life for everyone, of any honest effort to counter-act the vile things that men do and teach to their children.  Any of the other notions you've got in your head about how you're on the side of the good guys, angels and white witches of a better tomorrow are lies if you "but, but.." the prospect of the torch put to academia. To the entirety of it, from the shittiest community college to the lab rooms of Johns Hopkins and the whole of fucking Yale.

And you can finally dispense with the self-deception about what kind of people you produce and who they'll end up serving. You can get on with your other compromises. You can mutter, "fuck it, I'm one of the bad guys," with good conscience and a surety of reward for taking your place and rank in the merit world. You can congratulate yourself that you don't hate the gays out loud or think "fucking nigger" the next time a black kid cuts you off on the way to work. You can give yourself a medal for not making a crude remark to the receptionist. Because that'll be all you've got: a veneer of toleration with which to comfort your guileless guilt, while you take a paycheck to break children and teenagers down further into objects and their future owners.

Otherwise, there's so much that is flammable.

Mar 5, 2012

Tornadoes in the Holy Land

Of course Putin rigged the elections. He's just more forthright about his shenanigans than the Republican-Democrats, who rig elections with "viability" and money, and all towards the same end, but haven't the decency to be equal to their actions.

Of course, Netanyahu's government is going to wait until the Obama Administration signs off on air strikes. There is so little difference between Israeli and American policy, you couldn't squeeze a molecule's width of ass gas between them. Tuesday's meeting has fuck all to do with restraining Israel. It's a matter of the kayfabe.

Of course, Rush Limbaugh is a misogynist pig-fucking geek hopped up on the power of self-regard and opportunist advertising. And? How is he different from Anthony Weiner, exactly?

Of course, the Shawnee, the Tsalagi, the Fox, the Chickasaw, the Choctaw, the Caddo, Kiowa, Osage and Pawnee peoples built scores upon scores of prefab housing towns on the open plains with no expectation that tornadoes might despoil the sky god's virgin paradise...