Tokyo Damage Report

2013 plans

1)  working on fake covers for all my fake albums.  over 30 so far. Need another 15 but burned out.

2)  overhaul of the Tokyo Underground Tour guide

3) kind of don't care anymore.  Would rather be in the bathtub reading Pynchon than worrying that Facebook and Tumblr etc. make it possible for some trivial douche to update their "relationship status" and get 100 times more "likes" than if i spent 10 hours making an in-depth report about Japanese emperor-worship and its lingering effects on contemporary subcultures.  If the fuckin ' internet enables so much information then why can i not find for the life of me websites that I want to read? Oh because "information" doesn't distinguish between Russian penis-enhancement ads,  and actual reports of war crimes that journalists almost died to get,  and kittehs. 

 

FUCK INFORMATION.

 

4)  Church of Misery is playing a fucking one-man-show at the new 20000v on dec 29th at 5 pm. please come to this, as it will be the best show this year. Also please bring me some leather lube for my leather jacket which is so stiff and brittle,  i can'T even wear that shit.   Leather Lube Links Please in the Comments. Fuck.

 

5) second best show; for 1000 yen . . . .dec 22, at kouenji DOM studio (in PAL shopping mall).  .. . 25 bands, 1000 yen. can'T go wrong.    F.I. D.   。。。。 Endon, need i say more???? fuck!  starts i think 3 PM goes alll night. it is a classic Japanese "gaman" contest to see who can tolerate the most mediocre music.

 

6) maybe a short story / rock opera (new!) based on a dream which I am presently having, where different parts of a song (melody, the rhythm, the meter, etc) are each political parties, and each have their own Fox News-style propaganda groups and PAC committes to influence  how the song goes, to their own benefit, regardless of how shitty the song winds up sounding. And actually if  the song gets shitty, that is all part of the plan, assuming they had the 50 cents-and-a-diet-sprite neccesary to hire a Spin Doctor to explain to the masses (in this case, the individual notes)  that the shitty song is entirely due to THEIR FOES and the only salvation is to give even more UNILATERAL POWER to the SAME FACTION THAT FUCKED IT UP SO FAR.

Wish me luck bringing that baby to fruition.

It will be called STAIRWAY TO SHITSTAIN.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

shitstainnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

nnnnnnn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

 

7) A n Old School Death Metal project about Kimberlite Pipes, not to exceed 5 songs in length. This OSDM . .. .will  be. .. .Perhaps even a OSDM   Puny Humans reunion, but don't expect   LA LA LA LA LA LA LA BULLSHIT WALTER  all over again (this last comment directed to our oppressive A&R agents).

5 comments

secret plans revealed!

 

 

So the reason I haven't been doing this site recently is, I was re-mastering all my old songs.

Hundreds of them.

It took years!

In some cases, I had to rip from cassette-tape masters.

In other cases, I had digital files in obsolete formats that had to be converted WITH TIME TRAVEL.

In still other cases, the digital files I'd previously archived DIDN'T FUCKING WORK because the archives THEMSELVES had been declared obsolete by the software manufacturer.

Years of  frustrating effort and nonstop worrying that I'd lose/break/forget about some ancient and obscure CD-R/cassete/ HD before I had the chance to archive it properly.

And then I had to re-rip a dozen more cassete-masters where the Dolby switch or the tape-speed was wonky BUT I HAD LOST THE 4-TRACK.

Borrowed a 4-track.

It didn't have the AC converter.

Found a converter.

But the polarity was reversed.

Fixed the polarity with sottering gun.

Then the earthquakes came.

Then, just out of sheer bloody-mindedness, I decided to REDO from scratch about 30 ancient tunes where the music was great but the recording quality was, let's say, not quite up to snuff.

In all cases , I had to re-mix all 500-odd songs from scratch.

And what's worse, actually LISTEN TO THEM  to make sure the levels were OK.

 

Which (the listening, if not the other efforts) lead to sudden and, in retrospect, quite predictable case of burn-out and months of  drinking.

And so on. 

 

But now it's FUCKING DONE.    The fucking master plan is IN FULL EFFECT; 24 years of songs, all in the same place, same format, all ready to go.

 

So, on to the next step: I set up a bandcamp page. We'll see if that's better than using this site to distribute.

Anyway, the bandcamp header looks like this: it's a close-up of this .99-cent guitar that I recorded all the original tunes on. The cheapest piece of shit that wound up playing the most ambitious tunes of my life. Just sheer hubris. Nobody told me that it was impossible to do that!!!

 

 

 Of course, There's still plenty of music available for free here on ths site, as well.

 

Anyway, if you are into funny / satirical / proggy music please visit the Schultzzz bandcamp page, and / or tell your friends.  Yes there are songs about Rhombuses, dung-beetles,  mall cops,  love songs to the toothless,  Flamenco-death-metal instrumentals, and of course raps about Gertrude Stein vs. Oprah.

 

The music is free to play and download, but Bandcamp makes their money by taking a cut of sales, so to encourage people to buy, they put a cap on the number of free downloads per month. Which is reasonable.

 

For now, I just have 3 or so albums up there. But just for the record, here is my whole fuckin'  curriculum;

Unless otherwise noted in bold type, all albums are one-man-band style.

1             the E-Z-Boy history of Man LP (87~89)
2            trump v. boredom!  LP (89)
3     Phil Collins naked – a real letdown DEMO (89)
4            Bombastic flamingo invasion! EP
5            all this hype about shit!  LP (90)
6            what the spoken word Jazz?!? EP
7            P.E.T.E.R. (Purgatory embraces these esoteric remnants) tunes 7” 
8            let us now praise anus men  LP(90)
9            Botched brunch EP
10          apes will tear us apart   LP(90)
11          Haranguein’ Da Joint   LP(90)
12   The Faculty  – demo one  and demo 2
14          major stereotypes EP
15          pheeding phrenzy of the madd phat   LP(90)
16           I support violence against pubic hair  LP (91)
17          Readers digested EP
18          deff speedo jam 1999   LP(91)
19   Snout  – demo
20          a fine bag of meat   LP(92)
21          Penis smut veneer 7”
22          Women who love men who hate women EP
23          Tv songs EP
24          rhubarb scumster  LP (92)
25          “what is ape compression ?” (a 30 second covers EP)
26          bowel goblin infestations of the late Rennisance  LP (92)
27          Loop Funk Erm 7”
28          noisejazz EP (AKA boppin’ the hamper with “entrenched” vincenzo applebottom)
29          nipplez del spellcheck  LP (93)
30          karaoke metal attempts EP
31          Mr. Pangolin’s fungal adventure  LP (93~94)
32   Adjective noun demos: dead victims of a no-good society . . .of death!!!  And : b@nk of @merica
33          grunting in obscurity  LP (94)
34          A brief history of vats vol.1   ROCK OPERA
35    Finger Lickin' Grout – Outlawed Ass Of Denmark, parts I~III ROCK OPERA
36          dad-blasted rotifers  LP (95)
37          Freakery beats EP
38           Suddenly last sphincter   LP(95)
39    Finger lickin’ grout –  demo
40           Belinda Carlisle and the enchanted stick insect ROCK OPERA
41   Phil Collins Naked – Figs: a three-day rock opera EP BUT ALSO OPERA         
42          23 grind EP (AKA grindin’ the night away with “lungless” p.d. gramaphone and Twaddle Unit)
43          Buckminister Fuller Suite EP
44          choice selections from the autobiography of Wilt Chamberlain
 
45         bruise fondle   LP(96~97)
46          4-track proggg attack EP
47          Epic jams EP
48          loopy larnyx castaways 7”
 
49          The martyrdom of st. chuckles EP
50          Lieberman’s preposterous rock opera ROCK OPERA
51  Fish supply failing –  demo
52          Grafted emu stampede DOUBLE- LP
53          the "long-awaited noise album"  LP
54          excuse me while I outrank your baboon piss!   LP(98)
55          18-98 (eighteen from ninety-eight) LP (98)
59    Fish supply failing – blottalgore LP (99)
60    Busuchan – defrag my heart LP (2000)
61           Stalin claus Superstar 4 DISC ROCK OPERA WTF (2000)
62           forgot to get a rap name LP (2001)
63   Finky Bink$ - Charlie bucket; cosmonaut LP (2001)
64   Puny humans - no one will ever understand our genious (sic) LP (2002)
65   Amino assholes- collected works vol. 1 LP (2002)
66            Ookubo sutajio fukubukuro LP (2004)
67            Criminally insane project LP (2004)
68   Panda fucker  maniac revolution -  demo (2004)
69   Bouninjoutai – Tokyo aizo LP (2005)
3 comments

Insane godzilla cosplay rap battle NSFW!!!!

OK  I heard everyone wants me to write more about Japan, so here's a review of a super insane concert where otaku dress up like godzilla and rap-battle each other and the judges are all naked lady robots.
 
I'm fucking with you. Actually this post is about how I organize my itunes database. I think you'll find it much more informative.
 
 
Finally reached the point where my itunes collection is definitely “too big to listen to every song” so instead of doing the sensible thing – deleting songs – I have decided to do the nerd thing AKA defiantly stop listening to the music altogether and spend my time instead mining the database for staistics.
 
For starters, here’s how I’ve classified music by genre, and also by percentage:
 
Classical                          0.4%
Crude                               2.5
Neofolk                            1.4
Drone                               1.5
Creepy                             0.2
Electronic                       1.3
 
African funk                    0.3
Mellow southern            0.2
Regular funk                  2.0
Poplocking/naked          0.3
Latin funk                     0.2
ALL FUNK                      3.0%
 
Grind                                1.4
Industrial                         0.9
Jukebox                           0.8
 
Kraut w/drum-machine 0.6
Kraut ambient             0.5
Krautrock                   0.5
Psychedelic               1.0
ALL KRAUT                   2.6%
 
(Salsa/meringue/boogaloo/cumbia)                                  
Latin                                1.2
Lazy sunday                   0.3
Lounge                            0.5
 
Mathcore                         1.8
Avant metal                     2.1
Atmospheric black         1.7
Folky black                      1.8
Orchestral black             0.6
Raw black                       0.7
Black metal                     2.2
(all black                         7.0)
Death metal                    1.7
Osdm demos                   0.7
Doom metal                     3.1
Uncle metal                     0.1
Fancy metal                    0.2
Power metal                    0.6
Thrash metal                   0.7
General heavy                1.4
‘70s heavy                       0.8
NWOBHM                       0.9
ALL METAL                   21.2      %
 
New wave                       0.8
Japanese avant rock         0.6
Horror                              0.5
Sound effects                   0.5
Pop or no category           2.2
Novelty                             5.2
 
Oldies (40s-60s)             1.5
Oldies (1900-1930)           0.2
Rockabilly                       0.3
Bluegrass                        0.2
Blues                              0.2
Dixie/jugband                   0.4
Jazz      bebop                 0.3
Doowop                           0.5
ALL OLDIES                  3.6%
 
Dissonant prog               0.7
Folk/ethnic prog             0.4
Fusion                           0.7
Heavy prog                    0.3
Modern-times prog         0.4
RIO prog                       0.7
Soundtracky prog          0.2
Symphonic prog           2.4
Zeuhl                             0.8
Zappa                            0.7
ALL PROG                      7.3%
 
 
Punk comps                    2.3
Punk                               1.1
Hardcore                         5.2
Japan punk                     0.6
Oi!                                 0.4
Finland punk                  0.4
Swedish punk                 0.3
Tardcore                          0.3
Uk82                              0.7
Postpunk                         0.8
Noise rock                       0.6
ALL PUNK                      12.7%
 
Ragamuffin / dancehall       0.5
‘70s rap                            0.5
Rap beats                        1.5
Non-english rap                 0.5
Dj scratchin’/mixes            0.7
Rappity rap                      6.6
 
(east: 66%
West: 30%
South: 3%)
 
 
ALL RAP                         10.3%
 
Rocksteady                     0.2
Schultzzz                        0.8
Soundbites                     1.5
Soundtracks                   0.5
Spoken /comedy            1.8
 
Africa                                0.6
Asia                                  0.3
Chanting                            0.4
Greece                             0.06
Gypsy                               0.4
India                                 1.1
Irish                                  0.3
Japan                               1.0
Klezmer                            0.2
Middle east                        0.3
Misc                                  0.6
Scandinavia                        0.3
South/latin America            0.05
Turkey                              0.06
              Pirate shanties                   0.2
ALL WORLD                  7.4%
 
 
(total 94.2%, not including songs which I ain’T listened to yet and the odd TTC joint)
 
AMUSING THINGS ABOUT MY CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM: 
 
“CRUDE” is a category dedicated to a bad habit of mine: searching the internet for all songs with certain words in the title, JUST TO SEE IF I CAN FIND ANYTHING INTERESTING. Words like “buttocks,” (surprisingly few songs. Dissapointing really, especially when you consider there are over 300 songs with the word “anus” in the title) (at least), “peepee”, “poopoo” and so on. The results of some searches are predictable: medical words like “vagina” or “fecal” tend to be only grindcore/deathmetal titles, while in the case of “booty”, duh, funk is highly represented.  But other words are less obvious: “goblin” tends to bring up a LOTTTT of techno. Why do techno douches like goblins? Since when? And when it comes to “armpit,” there’s way more ‘60s artists than you’d imagine. “booger” yields a bunch of country and western tunes or Southern r&b.  “boner” skews very punk rock – not the hardcore punk, but the sloppy, ramonesy/sex pistolsy punk.  A word like “fart” is ALL OVER THE PLACE. You’d think it would just be some Weird Al wannabees, but there’s a suprising amount of avant-garde or experimental bands getting down with their farts. “gnomes” sounds like you’d get a lot of fantasy-themed ‘70s prog, but in fact there’s more death-core bands that come up – you know, the spazzy post-dillinger-escape-plan dongs.  They like them some gnomes. Mysterious. 
 
CREEPY refers to bands that are sot of “quiet heavy metal” – songs that are scary and dark and heavy but played really quiet and ominous like AT ANY MOMENT the monster is going to come out of the closet.  Yes that’s a whole genre!
 
 
 
 
JUKEBOX is where I keep single songs – not full albums. Usually these songs are nostalgic things from when I was a kid. Boston! The jukebox now has like 2,000 songs, which I spice up by adding a lot of filler (say, fake DJ scratching or animal SFX) between them. So a sample playlist might go like:
 
Kansas “carry on my wayward son”
Gibbon grunting
f-f-f-f-f-fresh!!!!
Billy Ray Cyrus “achey breaky heart”
Napalm Death: EUHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!
Etc.
 
 
GRIND: Did you know on Soulseek (a P2P site) you can search for songs BY FILE SIZE? So, hypothetically, you could search for "grindcore" and then rank the results from smallest to largest. By DLing all the smallest files, you could instantly amass a collection of  JUST ONE- OR TWO-SECOND-LONG SONGS.  Consequently, 90% of my grind collection is only used as filler between '70s songs on the jukebox ! Honestly I don't have any use for this genre besides as a joke.
 
 
HORROR: There's actually a whole genre of haloween-themed novelty tunes, most from the '50s and '60s, with titles like "took my baby to the hop BUT MY BABY IS FRANKENSTEIN WTF" or "My baby is a Teenage UFO!"   or "baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby werewolf baby baby dragrace LOL deeeeyammnnnnn"
 
KRAUTROCK: this is an irritating label because it seems to refer to “all german music in the early ‘70s.”   Most of which, I discovered, is shitty wanna-be Led Zeppelin nonsense. Even after you edit out all the fake blues and shitty guitar solos, and control-z all the songs with a lead singer who likes to “improvise poetry” over a “jam” (shout-out to the over-rated Can) . . . .there’s still a bewildering diversity of Fritz music left.  And when I’m in the mood for some spacey synths, I don’t want to hear some Kraftwerk drum machines, and when I want drum machines, I don’t want to hear psychedelic jerkoffs. So I had to sort of make my own sub-categories for it.  
 
LATIN: At 1.2% that seems kind of small, but  to me it FEELS like 20% at least, probably because I spent so much time editing the songs. See,  most salsa/merengue songs tend to be like 2 minutes of really shitty ballad-y nonsense with really complex and sappy jazz chord progressions, before the horns go BLAT! BA-BLAT, BLAT, BYONNNNNNNNNNN!!!! and then it settles into a totally rad one-note groove with call-and-response vocals over it. So pretty much 80% of my latin songs I've had to cut out the first minute or so. Besides the collecting of CRUDE songs, this Salsa Surgery is my other bad habit.  But I can't fuckin' help it- there is literally no other genre where the songs are THAT CRAPPY  in front and THAT  PARTYING in the back. It's like the mullet of music.
 
UNCLE METAL is my own term for bands like CIRITH UNGOL, MANILLA ROAD, PAGAN ALTAR, BROCAS HELM, SLOUGH FEG. . . .  the always-unpopular type of old-school metal that is too fast to be doom, too slow to be thrash, too late to be NWOBHM, but continues to this day somehow, galloping into a fan-less future of poorly airbrushed dragon album covers. . . .
 
FANCY METAL is a term I got from the perceptive fellows at the ILLOGICAL CONTRAPTION blog.  According to them, Fancy Metal is like a lot of different melodies at the same time, usually with female vocals or harmony vocals, and a general epic retro-‘80s Maiden vibe to it.
 
NO CATEGORY:  I have so little pop music, I stash it here, so Blondie and ABBA can rub shoulders with  Abnormal Growth and Diamanda Galas.
 
SOUNDBITES is my THIRD bad habit (besides CRUDE songs and Salsa Surgery) . . . .I got this sweet freeware called REPLAY MEDIA CAPTURE which I guess most users use to "capture" streaming porn so they can watch it later. But I use it to steal the audio punchlines of cartoons – Simpsons, mostly, but also Harvey Birdman, Family Guy, Sunny in Philadelphia, or pretty much any movie with a rediculous dialogue.  I have a shamefully large amount of soundbites, which also wind up as filler in the JUKEBOX.
 
For example:
 
Abba "gimme gimme a man after midnight"
Frank: "What the shit is a thundergun?"
Dio: "rainbow in the dark"
Llama Spitting SFX
Mooninites "we smoke as we flip the bird"
Zapp : "more bounce to the ounce".
Neil Hamburger "sigh . . . . .oo-kayyyy."
 
SCHULTZZZ is my own bands. 813 songs so far!   That means I have more of MY shit than I do Lounge, Old School Death Metal, Power Metal, New Wave, Horror, Rockabilly, Bluegrass, Classical, Bebop, Doowop, Dancehall, Soundtracks, or Pirate Shanties.
 
 
 
Moving on, let's look at all the music i own BY REGION:
 
 
NORTH AMERICA
/CARRIBEAN                 41.5%
WEST EUROPE                          24.2
ASIA                                           5.2
EAST EUROPE                           2.3
AFRICA                                       1.4
SOUTH/LATIN AMERICA              0.8
MIDEAST                                    0.5
AUSTRALIA                                 fuck’em.
 
 
And BY COUNTRY why not.
 
USA                    37.4%
England               8.0
Japan                 4.6
Germany            2.9
Sweden              2.3
Finland               2.2
France                2.2
Norway               1.7
Italy                    1.2
Canada             1.2
Russia              0.9
Jamaica            0.8 (sorry)
Holland             0.5
Ireland               0.46
Australia           0.44
India                  0.41
Spain                0.35
Swiss                0.32
Belgium             0.33
Poland 0.32
Cuba                  0.27
Puerto rico         0.26
Ukraine              0.26
Israel                 0.25
Austria              0.24
Czech               0.24
Israel                 0.24
Ethiopia             0.21
Dominican         0.17
Hungary            0.17
Mexico              0.17
Colombia          0.17
Bulgaria            0.16
Nigeria              0.15
Denmark            0.14
Brazil                 0.13
Indonesia           0.1
Balkans             0.1
Argentina           0.1
Mali                    0.09
Thai                   0.0 9
Saharan Africa    0.09
China                 0.09
Egypt                  0.07
Morocco             0.06
Benin                0.05
 
SUMMARY: in your face, Benin! 
 
Well, that's it for now, people. Join me next time as I write 5,000 words describing the proper way to re-roll toilet paper back on the tube after you've unspooled the whole thing.
 
Because WHAT KIND OF SHEEPLE USES UN-HACKED TOILET PAPER??!???!?
4 comments

idea for a book

IDEA FOR A BOOK:
 
 
 
There’s a “performance enhancing smart drug” called PPP. The drug helps people “enhance their cognitive performance” and “help make difficult decisions” by “stimulating the part that helps you think outside the box and make new mental associations with old real-life (RL) referents.” However, if you take too much, you’ll have a seizure and hallucinate your ass off.
 
In practice, PPP is used by elites, illegal for everyone else. Classified as a “job-creating smart drug.” (the law works like this: only people who are making decisions which could seriously help the economy (generating jobs or GDP) are allowed to take the drug for inspiration.  Anyone poor caught doing the drug is abusing it because their “trip” won’t result in upping the GDP or improving business efficiency, therefore they must be just taking it to get high as shit, therefore it’s ABUSE.) (similar to the “big boy rule” of financial regulation)
 
So now there’s a certain few hundred incredibly wealthy/influential people who are in the throes of various earth-shaking business/scientific dillemas: (is the bubble going to burst this week? Should I go short and liquidate my $3 billion position? Should I move against my partner, is he screwing me behind my back? I’ve got this workable cold-fusion generator, everything is invented except this one particular bit of the process, and I need inspiration to solve the last equation!)  and they had these drug based epiphanies – a further side-effect of PPP is to convince the user that their “trip” contains the simple, final , correct answer to their dilemma . . .. BUT THEY CAN’T INTERPRET THE MEANING OF THE EPIPHANY. (This epiphany comes from the Original Trip, or “OT”) 
 
Even worse, it also gives you nasty flashbacks for months afterward, which a) disrupt your job performance and b) tease you beyond the point of human endurance: “Fuck! If I could only figure out what these hints MEAN! My subconscious is still trying to give me my problem-solving epiphany! If only there was some way to fit all the pieces together. . .”
 
Enter ANAMORPHOSIS EPIPHANIC OUTSOURCING SOLUTIONS ( A.E.O.S.)
 
This is a mysterious company that exists solely to help these hundred-or-so elites who are haunted by their PPP flashbacks. Anamorphosis refers to the type of optical illusion that sculptors sometimes make: where you see what looks like a bunch of random sticks sticking up from the floor, but if you stand in one specific point of the room – if you look at these random sticks from one specific perspective – the random sticks seem to auto-assemble into an easily recognizable object: a chair, a bicycle, or what-have-you.
 
 That’s the whole point  of AEOS: They implant their Client’s hallucinations INTO OTHER PEOPLES’ MINDS , and use the other people’s trips to give other points of psychological “perspective” from which to view the Client’s own trip.  So, from the Client’s mind, the OT (Original Trip) looks like a bunch of random sticks, but from the perspective of another person (called the Subject) in whom the same OT was induced, the sticks might resolve clearly into a bicycle or chair (i.e. a clear solution to the Client’s RL problem, the missing part of the math formula, a financial decision, etc.). Incidentally, the use of Subjects is the “outsourcing” part of the acronym.
 
How does AEOS implant the Client’s drug-trip into the Subject? And, more importantly, how do they keep the Subject from learning the Client’s super-secret and world-economy-altering dilemma along the way?
 
Short answer: AEOS invented a second drug QQQ: a PPP-derived drug that  (when mixed with a small amount of the Client’s spinal fluid), allows one person to experience the flash-backs of the Client’s  trip. But not the trip itself. You don’t experience any of the context or narrative of the Original Trip. In fact you don’t even know you’re high.  If you’re on QQQ, you don’t feel euphoric or freaked out.  If the Client’s trip revolved around incredibly realistic hallucinations of x,y,and z, the Subject on QQQ would instead experience a regular day where everything she or he saw would REMIND her/him of x,y,and z. In short , QQQ tweaks your mental associations of things to match or correspond to the OT. You don’t think that the tree has come alive, that it is talking to you, but instead you say to yourself, “Man, the leaves in that tree remind me of a face!”  Like a dream, little mundane things will jump out at you and seem significant, even if you're not sure why they are significant.
 
And here again there’s the theme of anamorphosis: a lot of the way QQQ works is ITSELF based on anamorphosis: it’s not the kind of far-out drug where you’d stare at a plain white wall or a clear blue sky and then see a puppy or Richard Nixon. You don’t even see a puppy or Nixon hidden in complex patterns on a rug or patterns in a cloud. You’re most likely to see the puppy or Nixon when you’re looking at complex things FROM A CERTAIN PERSPECTIVE: the leaves of a tree arrange into Nixon’s face just for a split second, just when your head was in that one position, and only then are you reminded of him.

 
The thing is, it’s not just random mental associations, there’s always a pattern: you don’t just have random mental associations of random things until you sober up. You consistently associate every Real-life thing x (plants, say, or reflections on glass, or the patterns on the walls of buildings) with concept Y (which came from the OT).
 
 
Anyway, the AEOS business has grown so large that it has split into several departments, which are frequently at odds with each other.
 
First, the Client meets with the top management: ALPHA DEPT, and the Client tells Alpha what their (super secret, proprietary, potentially world-economy-altering) dilemma is (i.e. the dilemma that had them resorting to PPP in the first place). Alpha keeps this a secret from all other departments of AEOS. Then Alpha de-briefs the Client on everything about their OT: what their drug trip was like, and what their flashbacks were like. This includes not only what they saw, but their mental associations WITH what they saw. (this is important to interpreting the meaning of the OT, because two people can hallucinate elephants but if the elephants have totally different mental associations to each person (one good, one bad, for example), then the interpretations of the epiphany would be totally different. ) These mental associations are then put in a proprietary AEOS database called the MAM. (mental association matrix).
 
Alpha then prepares a report on this information (the trip, not the RL dilemma) and passes it to BETA DEPT, of which more later, and GAMMA DEPT.
 
Gamma is in charge of making sure the Subject’s trip will match the Client’s Original Trip as closely as possible. For instance if the Client’s flashbacks were audio, they’d want the Subject’s trip to be audio also, and not visual.
 
Here a further digression is necessary: PPP trips are like shamanic vision-quests: pretty much all hallucination. QQQ trips, in contrast, are like this: The QQQ user sees things in RL (called Stimuli) and then mentally associates those things with the concepts (called Referents) which have been implanted by the drug. (“I don’t know why , but every single cloud formation I’ve seen today makes me think of Egyptian Gods!” as opposed to HOLY SHIT THAT CLOUD TURNED INTO HORUS AND HE’S COMING RIGHT AT ME AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE) The Referents all come from the Client, and are different depending on the Client. 
 
Gamma does its job by choosing the appropriate varieties of QQQ to use on the Subject.
 
There are many different varieties of QQQ:  they all work with different real-life stimuli. For instance, if the original person’s flashback involved monkeys, you might take one strain of QQQ that would cause you to mentally associate monkey faces with plant formations, another strain of QQQ that would cause you to “see” monkeys in clouds (same referent, different stimuli), a third strain that caused you to project that monkey flashback onto patterns on walls, a fourth strain that would cause you to think that background noises “sounded” like monkey calls, Or a variety that makes you mis-read signs/words consistently in a certain way. etc. And perhaps yet another strain would be tactile: it would make the enamel on your teeth “feel” different ways. Nobody likes taking that one.
 
This is important, because if the stimuli doesn’t match the referent, if the Client kept seeing her grandfather in the clouds, but the Subject’s trip is more like “these Graham Crackers really remind me of Gramps, even though he never ate them in his life, what is up with that?!?” . . . .  it’s going to be harder for Alpha to assemble the client’s and the Subject’s trips into the final ANAMORPHOSIS. 
 
Finally, Gamma would prepare a report for the lowest-ranking departments, DELTA and EPSILON. This report would omit the actual content of the OT. The report would consist only of:  a list of all the Referents of the OT, the MAM of the Client, and the Stimuli of the OT.
 
Then, finally there are DELTA and EPSILON DEPTs, which are responsible for recruiting unwitting test subjects to take QQQ. 
 
The process of finding Subjects begins with a fairly wide net: first, Epsilon uses a front-company, such as a market research firm, to recruit low-income people and would interview them about their mental association of 200 things (all of which would have been carefully chosen by Beta Dept, to match things in the Client’s original trip: if the Client associates elephants with dread or fear, and the subject associates them with circuses and joy, the potential Subject would then be dropped.) Once EPSILON finds a Subject with a good MAM score, and GAMMA concocts a potion with the exact varieties of QQQ to reproduce the Client’s flashback in detail, then DELTA DEPT goes to work.
 
So what Delta does is set up front companies that offer poor people good money to test experimental drugs for things like coughs, sniffles, butt allergies, etc. These “clinical trials” are a sham, and the “experimental drugs” are just placebos or simple over-the-counter medicines. However the placebos contain a lot of QQQ. 
 
Since many PS (Potential Subjects) would either fail the MAM or not be interested in the drug trials, the whole recruitment process might involve thousands of PS, just for one Client alone.
 
The Subject would be dosed with QQQ and then released to go on about their average schmuck day. And here we have to discuss certain institutional problems with the Gamma Dept. management: Free-Range Gammas vs. so-called Stimulus-Led Gammas. 
 
Sometimes with particularly difficult assignments (where the Client’s original trip consisted of stimuli that are fairly rare in RL) , A Stimuls-Led Gamma team might arrange for the Subject to be in a specific place at a time when that place is filled with x,y, and z  IN REAL LIFE. The idea being that the real-life stimulus would “lead” the Subject’s trip to more closely correlate with the Client’s OT.  Since Delta is not allowed to know the contents of the OT, specifically to prevent them from doing this sort of tampering, the Gamma team would have to surreptitiously send their own agents in (often on lunch-break) to follow the Subject or influence him or her.
 
The majority (AKA “Free-rangers”) believe that if the MAM and the QQQ-strain are well-adjusted, that the Subject would VOLUNTAIRLY depart from the course of their everday life and actively seek out RL spaces with x,y, and z. Furthermore, Free-Rangers believe that any attempt to interfere with the Subject once she or he has been dosed will compromise the whole assignment.
 
The Subject will spend a full day full of very small, seemingly mundane, events that they all happen to mentally associate with the same certain 2 or 3 things.
 
 And when the Subject comes back from taking the drug, they’ll say, “Well, it didn’t cure my sniffles but I did have some weird experiences where the bushes around my apartment, when I looked at them from certain angles, I kept being reminded of the faces of my grandparents.” 
 
And the “sniffle-medicne researchers” would say, “Well that’s too bad it didn’t fix your sniffles. But these perceptual changes could be, well chances are they’re not a side-effect, but just in case, we’d like to interview you in depth about them – were they frightening? Or reassuring? What mental associations did you have with the grandparent-faces? Did you only see them in bushes, or did other things make you think about your grandparents as well? When I say the word “bushes” , what is the first thing that comes to your mind? When you took the anti-sniffle drug and went about your average day, did you do everything as normal, or did you wind up impulsively taking some other course of action? We’re a caring company! We’ll  set up a weekly counseling session, and pay you double your current pay to attend it.” And so on.
 
Just like with Gamma, there are also institutional problems with Delta and Epsilon, namely that they’re lowest on the toem pole and they know it. They are excluded from even basic information, like the nature and context of the OT. . . .for sure they can guess some of the original trip based on the screening questions which Beta Dept has written, if not then they definitely can infer the original trip from the exit interviews with the Subjects. Of course, a lot of these trips are totally failures (i.e. the Subject’s trip was totally off-the-mark (which is usually blamed on Gamma Dept for assigning the wrong drug, although Gamma is quick to point out that they never get to talk to the Client themselves and can only go on what Beta tells them, so fuck Beta, and fuck Delta too for goddamn screwing up the goddamn screening process!)) (the point being that even though Delta people, being the most left-out-of-the-loop group, love to try to guess who the Client is or what the Client’s trip was, often the Subject’s QQQ-trip is so far off-the-mark that Delta’s guesses wind up being hilariously wrong also)
 
Also a problem with the AEOS model: you've got these average low-income schmucks walking around, totally unaware that the fate of empires hangs on their shoulders. What happens if a schmuck just doesn't feel like coming back in to complete the process? In theory you could just keep draining spinal fluid from the Client and have 100 Subjects simultaneously doing the assignment. But that would radically increase the chance of one or more Subjects having a trip which was TOO CLOSE to the Orignal Trip, and perhaps an unusually bright Subject could then deduce the REAL LIFE dilemma of the Client, or infer the Client's top secret proprietary information ("Wow, I spent all day staring at clouds and thinking of cold fusion, and now I have this incredible itch to spend all my savings on stock in this obscure tech company I never knew about!").
 
After debriefing the Subject, Delta would then prepare a report for Beta dept, which details all the subject’s effects of their QQQ trip. And also how the subject felt about it, whether they were motivated to act a certain way as a result, their mental associations, etc.
 
Beta Dept’s job is to see the results of the Subject’s trip, and then try to see how well they could make the Subject’s trip correlate with the Client’s trip. They would comb through all the referents, stimuli, real-life decisions, and mental associations, try to find correspondances, coincidences, isomorphisms, metaphors, etc. There would be a baffling and pseudo-scientific system for numerically ranking all these correspondances, etc. assigning them numbers. Beta would prepare a written report for Alpha Dept.
 
And finally Beta would use the numbers to construct a physical model (the way high-end architectural firms make models of the proposed buildings to wow their clients), which model would show how closely (or not) the Subject’s trip (and its accompanying mental associations with the things seen/heard, and the real-life decisions that the Subject made based on those mental associations, etc.) matched to the Client’s trip. This often takes the form of a tower or two towers that are intersecting at such-and-such an angle.
 
This physical model is not just something to flim-flam and impress the Client, however. It is the heart of the whole AEOS system. Remember, Anamorphosis is a visual thing: by looking at the “random sticks” from a different perspective, they seem to self-assemble into a bicycle. And by assembling the two peoples’ trips into a physical model, then Alpha Dept and the Client can physically see the anamorphosis, which sometimes helps to determine the epiphany. 
 
The institutional problem here is like this:  Beta Dept is going to look bad if there’s no correlation at all, and (unlike Delta), they DO know the content of the Client’s trip, so they have an incentive to massage the statistics and spin the results of the Subject’s trip to match it. However, if they don’t accurately report the Subject’s trip, it will defeat the whole purpose: shitty or massaged data would make it impossible for Alpha to deduce the “true meaning” of the Client’s trip and give the Client his/her epiphany. So Beta is always walking a very fine line.
 
So, to sum up, the AEOS system is like an onion of secrets:
 
The first layer (Delta) is supposedly a clinical of some random cold medicine. But really it’s a way of dosing the Subject with QQQ. The Subject has no idea what they’re really being dosed with, and the Delta members themselves have only the vaguest idea what the Client’s original trip was!
 
The second layer (Beta) is to plot the correlation of the Subject’s trip with the Client’s trip, the way that a sculptor might physically decide where to put different sticks in a room so they look like a bicycle from a certain perspective. But unlike the sculptor, Beta has no idea what the finished thing ought to look like. They don’t know the Client’s original dilemma, just the contents of her/his trip.
 
The third layer is Alpha. Alpha takes the physical model and report prepared by Beta and shows it to the Client. Alpha has prepared a separate report where they try to use the “new perspective” from the Subject , in order to definitively say THE ANSWER TO YOUR REAL-LIFE DILLEMA IS TO DO THUS-AND-SUCH. Yes, short the market right now. No, don’t wait. Yes, you need to stab your partner in the back, she’s been robbing you blind. Here’s the missing inspiration for your science project that your subconscious has been trying to tell you. And so on.
 
And here again there are serious institutional problems: AEOS’s Clients are, by definition, people dealing with ideas which risk billions or trillions of dollars, or which could alter the balance of power of entire countries. For security/privacy reasons, of course,  only the Alpha dept. has access to this.  But Alpha members are only human, and might want to influence the Client to choose course of action A over B. Especially since the Alpha members themselves – being very rich owners of the AEOS Enterprises Corporation –  usually have some conflict of interest: they might own some of the stocks that a Client is debating whether to short. They might own some oil wells in Iraq that would go out of business if the Client was able to – thanks to AEOS – invent cold fusion. And so on. Or maybe they are just morally appalled by what the Client is debating to maybe do. 
 
Also, even more than the Gammas, Alphas tend to an extremist version of the Free-ranger thinking: even if the things the Subject did/saw/mentally associated are radically different than the OT, that doesn’t matter. Despite the deltas/betas’ obsession with exact correspondence, Alphas are more likely to consider the final Anamorphosis the priority – sometimes the MORE different perspective is more necessary to seeing the true meaning of the OT. This is expressed in the Alpha slogan, “The Subjects  go where they NEED to go to answer your question. He was SUPPOSED to do that.”  It’s unclear if they really believe that or just use that to flim-flam the Clients.
 
This brings us to, The fourth layer. The layer that not even the Clients know about. Just the Alpha dept.   There might be something funny in the PPP drug that the clients are taking. Something that influences them or puts them in the power of AEOS. Not sure exactly what, but it’s the logical extension of the first 3 layers. Maybe it’s just a rumor – some black-humor circulated amongs the mid-level AEOS staff.
2 comments

kill list (is on the kill list)

Spent last week making a damn rap song.

It's about politics!

It's over 8 minutes long!

I'm rapping like it's 1981!

There are samples of lynxes and raccoons!

 


click here to download mp3 of KILL LIST IS ON THE KILL LIST


Obama got himself a kill list,
Now Romney wants one too
Nobody knows who is on those
Maybe it’ s me or you
Funny thing about that list
Officially it don’t exist! Just
like the targets, it disappears , we
Can’t debate what’s isn’t there!
No  matter who wins, the election
Your vote don’t affect that policy
Just ignore it, it’s way too important
To leave to democracy! Beltway
reporters, consider it tacky
to ask about al-A-wa-laki.
The official story of how he died is,
He tripped over the President’s peace prizes.

But it’s
not just arab Americans
That vanish in the dust and sand
Ideas can also disappear
‘Specially in election years.

Gitmo bay and climate change -PUT EM ON (what?) THE KILL LIST
Debt relief and minimum wage -PUT EM ON (what?) THE KILL LIST
Poverty rate, incarceration rate 
why can’t we debate, these those or this?
Because the list its god damn self is . . .   
ON THE LIST  (WHAT?) THE KILL LIST

Real politics is who is able to
decide which issues are on the table.
By the time they talk to voters,
real politics is already over
Mcdonald douglass, Koch bruvasss,
and the NRA
Pick n choose, which issues,
the cand-di-dates can-de-bate
left or right wing, here’s what that means,
after they take the rest:
You got the right, to go and fight
on the crumbs that’s left
Immigration, and abortion,
So-called controversial bits                     
Controversy just means, that the  lobbying green       
Was too short to get  ‘em on the list.
In that case there’s a loud  debate, and the
dudes allowed a chance to paint
The other fella as so extreme
Even though they usually agree!
Negative ads, from shadow PACs,
got us all excited,
Citizens been conquered and divided
all thanks to Citizens United.
While the voters, dis each other,
We forget how much we have in common
And we don’t ask why neither guy
Mentions our most pressing problems.

But everybody, from every party,
thinks campaign spending’s too far
We want to keep jobs in the US,
and get our kids home from the war
But neither hack is, pissing  off his backers
so these things aren’t discussed
Romney and Obama, got more in common
with each other than they do with us.
Neither henchman is gonna mention
Gun control, even to deny, and if you
think they’ll discuss, the war on drugs
My friend,  you must be high.
People behave like their guys’ a saint
and the other guy’s the devil . . .But big
companies, give both men cheese
 at almost the same level.

What do they know that you don’t?
What do they know that you don’t?
What do they know that you don’t?
Is it you can’t guess or you won’t?

Reporters , under orders,
Never press for a kill list quote
With over 6 billion in election ads,
they’d be dumb to rock the boat.
Even if you rightwing, you should be frightened,
by this state of affairs.
No debate means you can wait,
axe Romney about school prayers.
If you want more options left or right
You can poop in a sock come election night.
Mail that sock to Ross Perot,
with a note reading “act like you know.”

union busting and charter schools                      -PUT EM ON THE KILL LIST
erosion of due process rules                   -PUT EM ON THE KILL LIST
wall street fraud prosecutions,              
single payer health solutions                 
network neutrality, fracking, pollution, – PUT EM ALL ON THE KILL LIST

If we ain’t paid the taxes on his loans
All Bain’s profits would be gone!
Mitt took government subsidies
And stashed the money overseas!
In a secret bank account
And dude won’t disclose the amount!
He’s not going to win, but that’s OK
His job’s making O. look moderate
The crazier he gets with policy
The more dems have to meet him halfway.
The donkey moves more to the right
And tells the voters it’s a compromise
no matter that Obama wins again,
Because his agenda will be more Republican
if that don’t seem, like victory
to the average blue and red team,
Our oligarchs, are hella smart
their only ideology is green.

So wiggle your holy underpants
Everybody do the Mitt dance!

No matter who wins he’s got to
Kiss the tuchus of Netanyahu
We in the red he in the black Still
every year a $2 billion check
And when we advise on how to spend,
He tells us kiss his rear end!
For all the money spent fighting muslims,
That fool should be paying US, son!
Create schools and a million jobs,
for dudes in afganistan,
The cops we train, they take aim,
and   shoot our fighting men
But when we want some jobs for us,
They call that a “stimulus”
And when we ask for a smaller class
They just hand us harder tests

Workers are takers, you’re on your own,
We gave job creators some risk-free loans!

Who are Americans more afraid’a?
DHS or al Quaeda?
Our taxes Pay the TSA  
to search our private parts,
but every day, luggage guys
can bring anything into airports!
$700 billion , plus a QE trillion,
cause banks too big to fail,
5 billion more, wiretaps galore,
for NSA to read all your email . . .but
Where was the, austerity,
when they gave the banks that gift?
when you want your share, for medicare,
they say there’s no money left
Both men agree, that subsidies,
to big oil is well spent
But treat retirees like welfare queens,
because they want “entitlements!”

TPP, GATT,
both men support the cause,
Of treaties that make foreign companies,
immune to all our laws.
for the sake, of free trade
importers could do no wrong,
But under TPP, your butt could be
In jail for downloading this song!
6 comments

the INNOCENCE OF MUSLIMS and the riots

first thought: HOLY SHIT SOMEONE ACTUALLY DID "THE PRODUCERS" FOR REAL.

 

 

second thought: Hey maybe if someone actually played the original Producers movie for the Lybian/Egyptian extremists, they might calm down.

third thought: the best and most informative reporting I've found on the issue is here: http://www.juancole.com/

The dude is not only unbiased but he blows off the trivial sensational aspects in favor of context and talking to actual Lybians and Egyptians.

fourth thought:   the usual muslims-vs.-americans violence is "You invaded our country so we're going to kill you."

This incident is NOT the usual. After all, the violence started in Egypt and Lybia, where  the US was on the side of the pro-democratic forces and didn't put troops on the ground.

Instead , this is a case of  "You are blasphemers so we're going to kill you."     

The occasional muslim-vs-infidel violence (the Dutch moviemaker who was killed, the ongoing Salman Rushdie thing, the Danish Cartoon Apocalypse, etc) gets a lot more press over here, but the fact is : 99.9% cases of blasphemy-based violence are MUSLIM-VS-MUSLIM.

Remember during the Iraqui insurgency, all the Sunni and Shiite militias that were killing each other even more than killing our troops.  And even right now, we have Lybian Sunni radicals are persecuting Sufis (who are also muslims).  And the biggest sectarian conflict is in Syria of course, where it's basically a proxy war between Sunnis (Saudi Arabia, and , well, most of the middle east) and Shiites (Iran, Lebanon). 

So the biggest victims of  religious intolerance and "die, blasphemer against allah!"-type violence are . . . . other muslims!

Some people are saying "Well this kind of embassy-burning violence is to be expected if the West lets free speech get out of hand," but WTF,  if middle-eastern muslims are more sensitive and tolerant in their speech than westerners, where are all the Sunnis killing Shiites getting their ideas from?!? Fox news?!?!?

2 comments

WHERE RAP BEATS WENT WRONG

I can tell you EXACTLY when rap production got fucked up: when sampling was outlawed. That’s right: I blame The Man.
 
‘70s rap records ( with music performed by live musicians) were cool, but it was ‘80s rap that was the most distinct!  It was very minimal and noisy :
 
it didn’t sound like ANY OTHER TYPE OF MUSIC.
 
It had almost no melodies, it emphasized what was unique about hip-hop, rather than trying to sound like funk or dance music or pop. No melodies, just hits and abrasive noises over gritty beats.   You could tell what song it was just by the beat alone, even without hearing the hook or the rapper!
 
It pissed off music critics – it even pissed off older black musicians, jazz musicians, who complained that the new generation didn’t have any theory or talent. Critics said, “this is just noise, not music!” And then the Bomb Squad came (public enemy’s producers) and took that negative and made it into a positive: they said, “You want noise, you fuckers? We’ll give you some fucking noise!”   . . .
 
After that minimal early ‘80s sound, rap beats became more like: James Brown samples, then through the early ‘90s things got more melodic, but they also got more frenetic, as producers would layer on more and more samples, so you’d be hearing pieces of 5 or 6 songs at a time (why not, right? Sampling was free!) So that still wound up being pretty noisy. 
 
And then came fucking 1991.
 
 The Man came and smacked up poor old Biz Markie for using a sample – setting a legal precedent which said “sampling copyrighted music is illegal!” .
 
All the other producers were faced with a choice: either get really creative with their samples or abandon the sampler altogether and just use keyboards. And they mostly chose the latter. Even producers like RZA that used samples creatively wound up using music samples, rather than found sounds or things they recorded.
 
 
Fuck that. 
 
Keyboard-driven rap just sounds like pop or dance music  to me – it doesn’t emphasize what is unique about the art form. Plus it’s hard to take the rapper’s tough-guy talk seriously when he is using more synths than Depeche Mode or Duran Duran.
 
 
To this day, I waste a lot of time wondering what would have happened if hip-hop producers had taken the other fork in the road: what if they said, “since sampling OTHER PEOPLES’ songs is illegal, why don’t we record our OWN sounds and sample THEM?” 
 
There’s a whole history of  music made from found noises and sound collagesItalian Futurism in the teens and French Musique Concrete in the 40s. If hip-hop producers had gone out and recorded the sounds of their neighborhoods, they could have 1) avoided sampling lawsuits, 2) made music even more noisy and revolutionary and abrasive, and 3) represented where they came from.
 
 
 

 
 
THE GOLDEN AGE OF BEATS!
 
When I say "golden age" I don't mean that the beats are better than the beats you kids like. I mean the beats are more unique and revolutionary: they weren't trying to be dance or funk, or pop.  it was hip-hop being fucking hip-hop. Also golden-age beats had to be ORIGINAL. Like if all you had for music was drums and a DJ scratching one note, the drum patterns , the actual RHYTHMS, for each song had to be a rhythm that had never been done before.  There was a creativity.  And the shit was catchy.   Play just 3 seconds of any of these beats to an old rap fan (without even hearing the rapper or the chorus), they can tell you exactly what fucking song it is.  Try that with a rock song (assuming you can find a rock song with all the vocals and guitars removed, just the drums!). Try that with a modern rap song (again, with all the melodies and vocals removed).  Ha!  Get the fuck outta here. Not even the fans (of rock or modern rap) could tell their own favorite songs apart just by the  beats alone.
 
Of course, most of the music produced back then was awful. Just like with any era. But the following songs – all from i guess '85 to '89 – show what I am talking about where the beat WAS the hook.
 
TOO MUCH POSSE – public enemy

SUCKER MC – run dmc

MEGA BLAST – public enemy

WALK THIS WAY – you know
MY RHYME AIN’T DONE – ll cool j
GET N PAID – schooly d

SOUTH BRONX – boogie down productions

PETER PIPER – run dmc
6 N THE MORNING – ice-t

PAUL REVERE – beastie boys
THE SHOW – doug e fresh and slick rick

MY ADDIDAS – run dmc

MONEY (DOLLAR DOLLAR BILL Y’ALL) – jimmy spicer
DOPEMAN – nwa

 
MORE ON MUSIQUE CONCRETE:
 

 

MORE ON ITALIAN FUTURISM:

4 comments

MY PITCH FOR A REALITY TV SHOW

 
Reality tv show: gather together half-a-dozen refugees from mind-control cults in different parts of the world (i.e. people who escaped cults, who have lived their whole lives inside really extreme ideology, but no longer agree with that ideology, but who have had no contact with the outside world basically)
  •   refugee from Sudan – never seen any iron-age technology besides an AK47.
  •     one of those poor women from the American Midwest Christian cults where dude has 20 wives and they dress like Little House on the Prarie
  •     kid from North Korea
  •     refugee from some psycho Hassidic family.
  •    Some ancient crusty island motherfucker that is like the last survivor of the New Guinea Cargo Cults.
  •      Various other misfits.
 
Put them together in a house and every episode would consist of this:
 
Sit them down in the main room and show them some artifact of modern Western society:
 
(for example, anything from the SkyMall catalog or a USB dildo or an Adam Sandler movie or a industrial packing pallet full of Slim Jims or the Willie Horton ad or some Star Wars bedsheets or even another reality show (i.e. season 1 , flavor of love) )
 
And just leave them alone to try to deduce the meaning of the object. Not just how it works, but more like: what does this object mean to modern Westerners and why do modern Westerners like it?
 
Play them a Bon Jovi CD and tell them “Over 30,000,000 people bought this. Why?”
 
Show them a velour thong and ask them “What is this for?”
 
Show them a fat-cart. Take them to a supermarket in it and ask them to pick out the “best” food.
 
Basically the show would sort of hold up a mirror to our society. Like the old “anthropologist from mars” routine.
 
More context would be given but only if asked for.  The people on the show would “win” the challenge simply by providing a coherent explanation for the thing or its appeal to westerners. Whether we westerners agree with this or not doesn’t matter. Just the process itself of these folks from massively different backgrounds trying to puzzle over some garbage would be awesome. Everyone would have been taught from a young age that everything from The Outside World is Evil and Bad . . . but each person would have been taught a different REASON why, and on top of that, they all escaped their horrible homelands and no longer believe that ideology, but have nothing to replace it with. It would be interesting to see if by the end of the show, would they embrace the cheesy first world materialism or conclude that humans everywhere are all just as fucked up.
 
2 comments

i call bullshit on social media

SOCIAL MEDIA
 
 
 
Imagine, ten years ago, if one of your friends had come up to you and said, “Hey Luis, I think you’re a rad fella, we’ve had a lot of good times, shared a lot of secrets, helped each other out of a lot of jams. . . .but from now on I will only be your friend if our friendship is mediated by a huge soul-less company that exists only to sell our private information to third parties. Well? Click yes to agree!”
 
You would have said, go fuck yourself. But nowadays that is the NORM for young people wtf.
 
Even though it’s the norm, obviously no one ever says this out loud – but they don’t need to! That is just how shit works nowadays. But next time you make friends with someone in RL, try explaining that to them in those exact words and see if you don’t fee just a little bit like an asshole.  Turning regular people into corporate shills is just one of the crappy things about social media.
 

COMPARED WITH THE '90S NET, THE WORST OF BOTH WORLDS.
 
 
There’s been a lot of noise in the past couple of years about The Man cracking down on the internet: domestic web spying, net neutrality, banning of file-sharing, weird SOPA/PIPA/TPP treaties, etc. But I don’t think enough people are complaining about social media, which is an even bigger threat because it involves users becoming their own jailers, in a sense.
 
I hated the ‘90s internet (rave pants, second life, the word “cyber” as a prefix), but at least there was a certain exuberance – the whole idea of “Let’s take the internet as far away from regular life as possible. LOOK I’M A FUCKING CYBER DRAGON WITH TITS! This is a new frontier and let’s just take this freedom thing as far as it will go. THE DRAGON HAS WELDING GOGGLES ON WTF!!?!"
 
But nowadays people want the internet to be as much like real life as possible – they want to log on with their own real name and connect with their real friends. What the fuck you need an internet for then? It’s like the modern net and social media in particular combines the worst features of both: all the non-privacy of the internet, combined with the  lack of creativity of RL.
 
Just because there's less imagination, that doesn't mean that people are more truthful, though. On social media you can’t be anonymous, or a cyber dragon, you have to be yourself, BUT you can still lie your ass off: everything you write , every photo you take, has to be tweaked and massaged to make you look a bit cooler than you are.
 
Social media is like writing an internet dating profile that NEVER ENDS.
 
In the old net days, they had this saying, “On the internet nobody knows you’re a dog.” Meaning: if people only read your words, they will judge your opinions based on how smart or persuasive you are, not judge you based on race sex or religion. Say goodbye to that!
 
There’s this idea that we’re losing our privacy to corporate marketing people who track all our net behavior, or that we’re losing our privacy to govt. spies. But the real balderdash is: people are voluntarily giving up privacy. They can’t WAIT to give up privacy.  People on “Google plus” actually LIKE the rule that you have to use your real name. . . .because they think this will cut down on “trolls.”  
 
They want to give out their real name, because they want to reconnect with old high-school chums or long-lost lovers or some dingbat from summer camp, or whatever. They want 1,000 “friends” and would prefer that those “friends” actually be people that they have had some real-world connection with.  
 
Because hey! If they know you, you can guilt them into “liking” you. You don’t have to actually do anything interesting or write a rad novel or produce something unique. You just have to say “I’m that dorkwad you know from 10 years ago!” Whereas if you were anonymous, and you wanted friends, you’d have to actually be interesting. Or have cleavage. Whichever.
 
But what are you giving up, in exchange for “likes” and “friends” and “votes up?” well, basically you can’t write anything about your boss because she’ll see it and fire you. You can’t write anything about your parents for the same reason. You can’t write anything interesting at all. 
 
I was going to say this took us back to the “bad old days” before the net gave us anonymity . . .but even back in the ‘80s, you never had your parents, teachers, bosses, ALL IN THE SAME ROOM WITH YOU, FOREVER. 
 
One site I think is rad is ZERO HEDGE. It’s this person who works on wall street who constantly exposes secrets the industry doesn’t want you to know, or shows how the famous CEOs are wrong about things. That would never happen on social media, where dude would have to use his real name.
 
So, ok. No more muck-raking, no talking bad or exposing authority. No more creativity. You have to be yourself, but a really fake version of yourself. All of the fakery with none of the creativity/privacy. 
 
THE OTHER BIG PROBLEM
 
One of the shitty things about school and work is: everything you do is quantified and ranked. Every second is scheduled. I did this many homework math problems. I made this many assembly line radios, with a retail value of XXX dollars. I got two Bs and 4 Cs. I read x books and got Y GPA.  I was #3 employee of the month. 
 
In other words, what made your free time special was: it was time when you were not being quantified and ranked. 
 
But now with social media, they are taking the business/work/school model and pushing it into the last non-regulated parts of your fucking life. 
 
Compounding the problem, if you look back, most of the best times of your life are precisely those times that can’t be quantified, ranked, or reduced to a number. The best times of your life involve intangibles or spiritual feelings. 
 
Since these by definition can’t be reduced to easy-to-compare-and-digest statistics such as “likes” or “# of friends”, they have no place in social media.
 
The people who run these social media companies want us to use them every second of the day. That’s why they give us so many carrots and little hamster-pellet rewards for participating in their services: likes, upvotes, friends, whatever whatever. The result is that we will start living our private life in ways that are rewarded by SM, and neglect those activities that DON’T give us the little mechanical reward: 
 
Imagine a facebook timeline like this:
 

 

 
 
You’ll never see that because
 
a) those wonderful experiences can’t be reduced to numbers,
b) advertisers can’t make money by selling you epiphanies, and
c) you can’t link to those things. Even if you click on the blue words, there is no website that will give you that thing. “Oh! Growing and becoming a better person? Sign me up! Click here!”
 
 
Will the next younger generation lose the capacity to even care about experiences which cannot be quantified and ranked? To paraphrase a nice Bill Hicks bit: “Why would I want to take mushrooms in the desert and look directly into the face of god, and be told that all humans are one , and we are all worthy of love? That won’t show up on Facebook at all!”
11 comments

GUESS WHO’S VOTING ROMNEY?

 
 
I used to think that the whole “dems and repubs are Tweedledum vs. Tweedledee” idea was something made up by college students to justify not voting. I mean, they weren’t going to vote anyway but now they could feel really righteous about it because “The two parties are just all the same, man.” 
 
Normally as you get older you get more conservative (for instance, I have drastically cut down on the amount of times a day I say “patriarchy”, and no longer think that “destroy the whole government and start over” is a garunteed winner) . . .but when it comes to this “major parties are the same” idea. . . with each passing election the Dems swing farther to the right, with each election that idea becomes more and more true to me.  
 
Sure, when I was young it seemed both parties were the same. But then I got older and wiser and said, “Well, there is one important difference: only Dems support the right to abort a baby, so I should vote for them, if only for that reason.” But now that I’m even older and probably senile, I’m more like, “You know what, fuck ‘em. For years they’ve been getting my vote – even though I disagree with 90% of the candidate’s policies – just because they say ‘ooooh the republicans are even woooooorse BOO SCARY REPUBLICANS!’”
 
And after 6 elections of this, watching dems go more to the right every time (while still supporting abortion), it’s beginning to dawn on me that THEY CAN KEEP PLAYING THIS GAME UNTIL THE VERY END. Even after Goldman Sachs has used all our money to build a giant platinum Cartier spaceship to escape the burning wreckage of the earth, even after all Americans have been reduced to living in old cardboard breakdancing mats, and our only food is the worms we pick out of our companions’ open sores, the democrats will still come around every 4 years saying, MY OPPONENT WANTS TO CUT OFF BOTH YOUR LEGS, BUT I ON THE OTHER HAND. . . .
 
 
I’m not saying there’s some illuminati conspiracy here where a bunch of guys met in a room and said, “Hey what if we had one party that was always just an ass hair away from the worst party ever?”   There’s no conspiracy – just dems and repubs both chasing the same campaign contributions that only the rich can provide. . .. and the rich are all super free-market-ass, deregulate everything-ass, ship all the jobs to china-ass, let the poor pay all the taxes-ass motherfuckers.
 
 
But seriously though: here’s just a partial list of the issues that obama and Romney agree on:
 
1)      continued war in afganistan
2)      environmental problems or regulation
3)      campaign finance reform
4)      prosecution for wall street clowns involved in 2008 meltdown
5)      guantanamo bay prison
6)      drone executions of American citizens
7)      spying on basically everyone’s phone and emails
8)      tax havens and offshore accounts
9)      corporate welfare and crazy subsidies
10) the war on drugs
11)  socialized medicine / affordable healthcare
12) Breaking up too-big-to-fail banks
13) Gun control
14) Cutting social security and medicare
 
But who cares, right?  Because Romney is a polygamist dog-roofer, and Obama is a Kenyan socialist!
 
Which brings us to the media. No self-repecting political rant would be complete without a media sub-rant!
 
Instead of thinking “It’s our job to grill politicians of both parties on issues that OUR AUDIENCE, AVERAGE AMERICANS thinks are important (i.e. the list above),” the media thinks, “It’s our job to make this THE MOST EXCITING PRESIDENTIAL HORSE-RACE EVER by magnifying the tiny differences between candidates into huge differences, turning tiny gaffes into Watergate-level scandals, and whipping the American people into such an angry apocalyptic froth that mass shootings break out nationwide all summer.”

Because of the "presidential horse race" mentality, the press avoids all the issues which the candidates agree on. To our media, asking a question about campaign finance reform or electronic wiretapping would be like putting a basketball hoop up at a football game – totally useless, because neither candidate would be able to score points with it. 

 
Maybe you’ll say, “But sir! Why not vote for a third-party candidate? Why not vote for someone you actually believe in?” HA!   Remember when Gore lost the election and people blamed it all on Nader? “You Nader voters cost Gore the election!” and the Nader voters said, “No, it was GORE that cost Gore the election – if he was more liberal I would have gladly voted for him.” 
 
I used to think that was like, “duh. Nader voters 1, Gore, 0.  Fuck Gore and the PMRC!”
 
But then it turns out that Nader’s green party got a lot of money from the repbublicans, specifically to divide the Dem vote. Doh! 
 
(And, more recently, we have Dems giving 1.5 million to help Todd Akin win the nomination for Republican candidate, because they suspected he might be a total idiot. Well, that’s not really helping me illustrate my point about the futility of third-party candidates, but it’s still a pretty funny story. Best prank of 2012 if you axe me.)
 
My point is, third-party candidates generally are just pawns of the better-funded 2 main parties, who use the third-party to split the vote of the other major party. 
 
Voting 3d-party is either for dupes or idealists that actually want to make America a better place. I am neither. A Romney presidency would obviously be disasterous for America and that is what I am going for. See, Dems will only return to the left side if they’re more scared of voters than they are of losing the big-money corporate contributions. And the more Romney fucks up the country, the more  of a left-wing backlash it will generate: the country gets so fucked up that even conservatives lose their jobs and become raging communists.  
 
Go Romney! Let’s make this happen!
 
 
18 comments

levelling up, levelling down

I remember being in college and spending a lot of time doing/listening to debates about various -isms and inequality. (hint: we were against it).  What is weird is, the teachers didn't give us the  conceptual tools to discuss it productively. 

 

For instance: any time there's a case of social inequality (the haves always do The Thing, and the have-nots don't get to do The Thing), there's actually TWO ways to remedy the situation. One: make the haves STOP doing the thing, and two: allow the have-nots TO start all doing the thing.

 

Both approaches result in equality, but through two totally opposite paths.  And yet – as far as I can tell – for hundreds of years that people have been debating inequality,  NO ONE HAS NOTICED THIS. You get idealistic people who  will use every last bit of logic and passion and carefully-thought-out ideals (Jeffersonian republicanism! Pluralism!  Transparency!) and spend a fucking hour advocating that we should make the haves STOP doing The Thing. . . . all based on a snap judgement that took a tenth of a second. Why should we make the haves STOP doing the thing? Why not allow everyone to ALL do the thing?  You didn't even consider that for a whole second. . . .did you? Because, against all logic, BOTH FUCKING TOTALLY OPPOSITE approaches to justice are taught to you as THE EXACT SAME THING.

We're taught NOT to ask ourselves, "Which TYPE of equality should I advocate to remedy  such-and-such an injustice?"

 

So, OK! Let me help the problem. 

 

Let's call the "make the haves STOP doing the thing" approach LEVELING UP, and call the "let the have-nots ALL be able to do the thing" approach LEVELING DOWN.

 

Some instances are easy as shit: the overwhelming majority of domestic violence is done by men. You don't have to think too long to realize this is a LEVELING DOWN scenario: Men should STOP doing the thing.

 

Other instances are fairly easy:  most senators are white, so most people would say that people of color should LEVEL UP. Unless you're an anarchist and think that NOBODY should have state authority, in which case you'd be all for LEVELING DOWN.

 

Then, a favorite of mine:  farts. Men fart and burp, women don't.  Are crude noises a form of oppressive male domination? Or are they a fundamental right which women have historically been forbidden to do by restrictive gender roles? In other words , should we get equality by LEVELING UP OR BY LEVELING DOWN?!?

Without these two concepts, you can't even begin to have that discussion!

 

Or song lyrics: a lot of rappers talk about killing young black men.  Would the world be a better place if  britney and lady gaga mostly sang about murdering white women? After all, that is more equal. And much much better.

 

Or this other thing, which I'm also surprised that no one has remarked upon:  the american police / national security state's radical EQUALIZATION and ELIMINATION  of racism.  This is the single most equality-making development in government since King marched at Selma, and yet nobody even says thank you?!??  Consider this:  government now treats  upper-middle-class white people like Black Panthers: reading their mail, tapping their phone, strip-searches at airports without cause,  "civil forfiture" of possessions without even an arrest, and "indefinite detention" without trial.  Still waiting for a rapper to make fun of Occupy kids:  "How's it feel, whitey? Oh, NOWWWW it's unfair, right, since it's happening to you! Welcome to the club, white kid."  

 

Anyway,  does  treating whites as crappy as black people count as leveling up or leveling down? 

4 comments

irony

 

 

 

It's great that Boing-boing could take time away from their busy Pedo-bear-shirt-selling schedule to rail against misogyny.

 

I'm looking forward to hearing the Boingers explain  in  their upcoming TED talk, which I believe is titled:  "rape is never funny . . .  unless it's children . . . . and I make ad revenue."

 

2 comments

Mexico