Empty Days

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Arabs really hate that Berg-murder video

Of all places, Al-Jazeera is casting doubt on the authenticity of the Berg's decapitation video - strongly suggesting that the whole thing might have been staged by US itself to divert attention from Aby Ghraib.

Umm, a little more substantive proofs to that effect would help - otherwise it's just bulls.

Otoh, there are indeed strange things about this video. What struck me personally as very odd when I first saw it on tv was the fact that the guy who performed the slaughter and claimed to be Zarqawi had his face covered - like the other ones in the room. It doesn't make sense - Zarqawi's face is well-known and I truly do not understand why he would need to hide it from camera while performing such a "glorious deed". (this is also a question raised by Al-Jazeera)

That and the fact that the still-shots at the informationclearinghouse website have different sequences of time-stamps from the video - some stills display 13:40's and others 2:40's. At the same time Al-Jazeera wonders why there is no blood seen dripping from the freshly-cut head... Strange indeed (suggestion: actual beheading happened hours after the murder). And it is strange that a man about to be slaughtered is so passive and does not struggle at all (suggestion: drugged?).

What's also interesting is that Al-Jazeera mentions that Zarqawi has been reported killed in islamist circles...

But as you may imagine it's really a tough call to accord any credibility to Al-Jazeera trying to deflect blame from its dear little islamists. Nevertheless the "questioning" is worth reading through - so far nobody really knows what exactly happened to Berg in mid April.


In praise of Media Bias

I've been thinking about this though - what would happen if, suppose, there were no "liberal-bias" to the press and everything was pretty much FoxChannel-like? Nobody would report nothing but bright official news of reconstruction and portray everything else as "minor disturbances".

Take a look at the CPA-website for a clear idea of just how it would look - you'd never know Al-Sadr was attacking US troops, Fallujah would have been quitely levelled to the ground in about a week with everybody imagining it was all fine and dandy, abuses at US detention centers would go on pretty much unchallenged for another year or two with minor disciplining here and there, Chalabi would still be the head of Governing Council and so on and so forth.

Dissenting views from foreign press would be readily dismissed as unamerican and hostile.

And then, one fine day, it would all explode into your face all at once - and you'd never know where the hell it came from, judging from "all is fine" picture...

Liberal-bias? America-hating human-rights watchers? Nosy defeatists?

Yeah - you'd rather have WH run it the way it did and expect it to do the job right... Or better still - heed the popular idiot wish and just nuke-them-all for pete's sake! And then say you've just liberated the whole place of all dissent. Great. America's gift of freedom to the Iraqi people.

What dire crap.

I can testify to you that Soviet troops in Prague 68 and Budapest 56 and Berlin 61 - they all, to the last man, believed they were actually liberating those misguided locals and fighting "isolated pockets of imperialist saboteurs" and bringing the gift of the new-order and socialist-freedom to those countries. They did believe this idea with all their heart and there was no doubt in their heads when they shot at crowds and arrested "saboteurs".

Do you think Americans are really any different? Feed the people enough lies, fill their heads with enough pompous nationalist-internationalist crap, and that's what you'll get. Brainwashed, deeply convinced executors of a new-order.

In view of which, thank God for Free Press in America - with all possible bias towards finding out bad lies and self-serving bullshit. Dixi.


Wishful thinking over Berg's plight

The conservative-underdogs (ya wish - sitting in WH and owning Congress, "underdog" my ass) are staging a mighty whine over liberal-media-bias who didn't spend days wailing over Nick Berg's murder and didn't even show the whole video, the bastards! (SOS - where was FoxChannel?)

Man... They want clear-and-present beheading on their shit-ass american tv primetime? Yeah sure. Subscribe to Al-Jazeerah and Allah bless the satellites. And then they're claiming that the surge of national-all-american emotion over Berg was so immense the masses went and overwhelmed the blogs :-0

Idiots!

Of course people rushed to the web - when it is announced all over the place "hey, here's a beheading! and it's on the net in full" and then the news-programs cut-edit to whatever and keep talking, the first thing people do is they rush to the internet.

I know I did.

I am not pro-war, not american, and I wasn't crying buckets over Berg, but I went for the "whole story" where the tv news said it was - on the net. And I had to make a few rounds through various blogs (where else?) before I finally found where the video was. Which I didn't download or watch btw- as opposed to many other people, I am sure. Snapshots were way enough.

Too bad FoxChannel didn't distinguish itself once again with claiming that "all those dogs should be nuked" - to echo the popular sentiment once again. I can't believe they didn't satisfy that urge when the opportunity came. What happened? Change of heart at the top? Or maybe they're suddenly getting rational? Hardly - the fact is, they too were prohibited by US broadcasting laws from showing actual beheading with awful screams and all.

And as I've noted in a previous post, where there is no broadcastable imagery news-media die away like flies.

***

There is an interesting oddity about Nick Berg's slaughter and the fact that it was done by a prominent Al-Qaeda operative - how strange it is that of all the anti-US militias and thug-bands roaming around in Iraq, it should have been Al-Qaeda who did such a graphic and bloody statement, ostensibly to avenge the humiliations at Abu-Ghraib?

Hey, there should have been a rush of such acts by now, all over Iraq - don't you think?

American reaction is of course totally oblivious to that strange non-sequitur despite such a mighty scandal and so much *supposed* outrage in Iraq (so far there's been more vocal outrage on AndrewSullivan.com than anything from Iraq). But it seems to me that this killing was done as much to impress Iraqis and ingratiate Al-Qaeda to the populace (as some sort of Zoro swift avenger) as to "punish" Americans as a whole.

And for some reason I am pretty sure it didn't work out for Zarqawi, but not at all - Iraqis of whatever nature, even Al-Sadr's guys, do not support this foreign ideologue (who blew up way more locals than US troops over the year) and in America it created the reverse-effect of making US more determined to squash him and everything connected to him (the irony is, of course - the all-american majority don't really see a difference between Iraq and Al-Qaeda, as per previous propaganda to that effect).

Al-Qaeda trying to win hearts and minds in Iraq - good luck.

***

As to how come Zarqawi is alive and well and causing havoc in Iraq, check out this enlightening story about how the WH made sure they wouldn't take him out until the war started, despite endless urgings from intelligence and Pentagon - since he and his terror-camp in Kurdish territory was their own provable Al-Qaeda link to Iraq... And Nick Berg payed the graphic price for it, with I don't know how many US soldiers who died in continuous bombings before that.

I hope the journalism behind this piece is viable - you can't be careful enough these days :-0

***

For those missing all the gore beamed directly to your tv-screens, take a look at this. I don't recall such pictures being widely broadcasted during Iraq invasion - and so the war always seemed kinda ok. Also, it is 1000 times harder to find equivalent images of dead and dismembered US troops. I don't know what would happen to american public if they saw their GIs in that state at least once a week- let alone Berg's head. What d'you figure would happen?

Nuke-them-all? I guess so. In view of which those hysterical war-hawks should really stuff it for now.




Originally from this site ("Some pictures a friend brought back from Iraq" - suddenly defunct) but now mirrored here and it's a very blunt collection, by no means all gore though.


In Praise of Homophobia

Or call it The Last Homosexual - an article by a certain would-be satirist John Derbyshire.

He's trying to be graciously urbane in his poking fun at the "obvious" - that most folks in the United States of America have a "natural" distaste for homosexuality and therefore it's absurd to want to institutionalize it as something more-or-less equal to other forms of sexuality. He's apparently proud of his literary education (what is this over-blathering over Shakespear?) and his respect for his elders and the wisdom of old (which is predictably narrow - the world is slightly richer in olden wisdom than a bunch of high-school classics, but then good old conservatives are apparently not supposed to be aware of that). All of which put together is somehow supposed to prove and demonstrate that disapproving of homosexuals is well nigh a socio-genetic trait.

Heh.

The whole tirade ends with a powerful case for "natural" abolition of homosexuality through too much social exclusion - both resulting in and producing futuresque eugenic practices that would pretty much nip the homo gene in the bud and "fix it" to finally produce a perfectly straight foetus. (remember: all good-conservatives are extremely concerned about foetuses and want to grant them equal rights... but I digress).

Sounds familiar and our educated satirist obviously is well-aware of the wonderful historical echoes this cute homophobia-accomodating scenario evoques.

All such rethoric (and I've seen it in various guises and on various subjects) invariable reminds me of that wonderfully instructive book from the 1928 where a highly educated Russian anti-semite attempted to argue his convictions in a polite, candid, richly argued, and reasonable manner. The title of this wonderful book: "What it is we do not like about them" (original emphasis).

Ok.

However, as opposed to his latter-day American counterpart, this smart Russian did not conclude with imagining a wonderfully velvety final solution. No, he was smarter and he saw the foundations of his own argument - instead he made it painfully clear that his deepest convictions, shared by such a vast majority in his own time, are a product of his time and history preceding, and with circumstances evolving these ideas could very well change entirely and radically - because history is not static and neither are ideas and convictions.

Perhaps this lovely fellow Derbyshire should read that book - and be impressed with the depth and power of skillful rational argumentation. I almost became an anti-semite myself while engrossed in those pages - and it took a serious effort of thought and will to argue back in my own mind and spot the inherent lie of this sort of truth-telling-from-the-obvious.

Yeah, I understand John doesn't like so much pc-posturing and whining and lobbying and displaying naked-ass in parades and ideology-mongering and lack of humor - from the homos, I mean. But I don't like this same stuff from the Jews either - they frequently go over the top these days in America especially with their whining and claiming compensations from all and sundry and lobbying and feeding Holocaust relentlessly to all major networks and what not. That too is pc-posturing and drastic lack of humour when it comes to making some light fun of Jews - unless you're certified Jewish yourself. Etc etc. And? I can rave against this all I want, it's still not enough to make me into a judophobe - because those are not enough grounds for that, pure and simple.

And where are the grounds, pray, for being phobic and queesy about homos?

Oh, I see - it's "natural", consacrated in tradition and it comes from fore-bearers and "my dad". Gee, how impressive. That dad is probly a WWII vet too - solid ilk, oh yeah.

Social fabric, you say? I don't see how social fabric can't be changed. The whole point of social activism is to change that goddam fabric, wave new threads, new ideas into it. Things change. Probly not as fast and easy-piece-of-cake as the homos want it but they do. And if you can't change, maybe you should really rake your brain as to why that is - it's not dangerous, it won't overturn your "deepest convictions", but it's an interesting exercise nevertheless.

My father is a devoted humanist and he's "mildly homophobic", which basically means: dismissive but not homicidal. And that is not because of any reasoned reasons but just because he's over 60 years old and has been raised and bred and nurtured in a world that viewed homos as thoroughly abnormal and preferred not to see them at all. There is just no argument in the whole universe that can change his deep convictions on that matter. My brother is quite a bit of a natural conservative and is also uncomfortable about homos but for some reason he's not nearly as dismissive. His idea is rather "live and let live" - and if they want to marry, why not.

Why is that? Why is there this difference between generations - neither of whom could be accused of being too liberal. To my mind it's pretty simple: very different environments, very different ideas in the air, things are changing and those new ideas are getting through to more people that you'd think.

So I guess the Russian anti-semite was right and the American mild-homophobe is wrong - ideas do change with time, and with ideas circumstances change as well, it's a vicious circle, and nothing ever stays put.

Except in the Third Reich - but it never quite materialized.




I finally got myself an allergy - a first for me - to May and its flowering pollens.

It feels bad and my nose if full of snot and itching. That's partly because I've been abusing that part of my body with unfiltered cigarette tar-filled smoke for about 5 years now in a massive way. Something is also wrong with my blood - at least judging from all the pimples. It's abnormal at my age and shows a great pollution of the flesh.

I deserve the allegry and the fucking pimples. My bad.


How US is different from Canada

U.S. arrests dozens over Internet child porn distribution

As far as I know, possession of child-pornography has been thoroughly debated, and then declared a non-crime and legislated as such after the case of a certain individual who was arrested in British Columbia with a whole load of such porn.

However, nothing could be found to prove this man ever indulged himself with any actual child - or effectively intended to do so.

The logic is simple: you would have to arrest all those who possess violent-rape pornography - of which plenty is trafficked on the net - and charge them... with what? Possession merely? Intention of rape? Possibility that production of such porn involved actual rape somewhere somehow (in Hungary??) ?

***

But US follows the same logic in its war on drugs - arresting users for possession, arresting pushers for distribution, and rarely ever getting at the actual producers. So far their whole War-on-Drugs has been a protracted fiasco. Change of course due, maybe?

Canada is intending to decriminalize possession of drugs - that is, try to separate users from pushers/producers.

Parallel example: smugglers illegally traffic and sell cigarettes on the cheap - they are hunted down and arrested, as opposed to all the loads of people who bought it cheap from them to avoid paying mad provincial taxes on tobacco. Smokers are addicts, due to nicotine component.

***

The case of child pornography is this - actual children are used-n-abused in the production of such porn. Users of such porn may be gravely perverted but it doesn't automatically follow that they have or will use-n-abuse actual children. Just as it doesn't automatically follow that users of rape-porn will rape or have raped or intend to do so.

It seems the question is this: how is it less bad, in the eyes of justice, to rape an adult than to rape a child? Follow that logic - and round 'em all up.
Officials said cybercrime task forces have been targeting distributors of pornographic images on the file sharing networks which have been used by young, potentially vulnerable audiences, who primarily have used the peer to peer applications to share music.

In some cases predators have used the technology to try to lure victims for sex, an official said.
In which case they would be charged with generally peddling porn to minors - as opposed to those "predators" who actually pushed for sex.

I have to wonder what charge will apply to those arrested adults who swapped this porn between themselves - in other words, is there a legal difference between a pedophile actively engaging with minors, either through porn-peddling or pushing for sex, and a pedophile who has not reached that stage?
One 19-year-old youth recently arrested and convicted told authorities he started using peer-to-peer applications to share music, but later moved on to sending and receiving images and movies of child pornography.
To whom was he sending this - to other adults or to kids?

Not that I have much sympathy for pedophiles, but I would rather have a non-active pedophile than an active one. Therefore a difference must be made - if not morally, at least legally.

***

Btw - if I get the recent US legislation right, the kids on that peer-to-peer network should be charged and fined for trading copyrighted music instead of buying CDs and paying up.

Am I wrong?




Abu Ghraib's prisoners are lethal.
...
Despite the global media inferno that has raged since CBS's 60 Minutes II first broadcast the Abu Ghraib photos on April 28, the global media have been remarkably incurious about the identities of the prisoners in those pictures and their reasons for incarceration. Asked if he had spoken with other journalists along these lines, Captain Mark Doggett replies, "You are the sole person who has asked these questions."

Oh really? Hey - wouldn't you just love to see Saddam stripped and engaging in simulated oral sex with, say, Chemical Ali in the nude?

Beyond comment.


Desperation on TV

You know those feel-good tv programs or news reports about people with a hard life who "come out" and discuss their problems and their experiences in public? I am sure you do.

Usually it's on some hot topic - like childhood abuse, or homosexuality, or sex-change, or some horrid disability, or mental illness, or what not. Well, usually these people come up and say things like "I've tried to kill myself so many times" and "talking about this will help others and that's why I decided to speak up" and "It helps me to speak openly of this" and stuff like that.

And then, a month or a year or maybe a couple of years later you hear or read in the news, by chance, that this person has just killed himself. And after you've heard that kind of news enough times you start wondering (at least I do): and what was the point of going all public and messing with journalists and tv and exposing your guts for the whole world to see?

Does it help? NO - IT DOES NOT. In fact, it's just another facet of complete and utter never-ending desperation when people actually bare themselves to that extent and mess with the media.

I just heard news on CBC that a guy who had been militated over the fact of his sex-change as a baby from boy to girl because of botched circumcision has killed himself. And his twin-brother killed himself 2 years earlier - and I have to wonder why that other brother did that. Probably the mess was something deeper than just a case of wrongful medical action.

But this story brought to mind that other guy who killed himself after going on tv - he was molested as a child in the early 1980's by staff at the Toronto Maple Leafs garden. And as in the case of Boston Catholic Church sex-abuse scandals, quite a few of those guys who go on tv to expose their abusers end up killing themselves anyway.

The reason people even mess with TV is because there is this crazy idea that if you talk it out and "face it" it will somehow get better.

No, it will not.

You can talk all you want and as publically as you want - still, you will never be able to "face" that fucking shit that's ruined your life - because it's too multiple and too deep and you can't even begin to grasp just what it is exactly that's destroying you.

***

I once talked to a girl who's been fucked by her step-father from the age of something like 3 years old. She was in her 30's when I ran into her on a suicide group - because by that age her life was in total ruins and she was getting flashbacks and running around like a wild goose trying to off herself. Many such people spend years and years trying to pretend they can "deal with it" and carrying on and living a sham life of appearances - but they eventually end up with suicide anyway. Because it's the only true way out - the rest is just pretending.

It's not the fucking that's so bad - it's the early destruction of basic trust and confidence. Most people are destroyed by whatever events when it undermines their faith in life, in people, in themselves - it can be anything really. Doesn't need to be a "hot topic". Can be pretty bland and hardly even noticeable. But once that effect is there, you're gone - you're destoyed forever - and all you do afterwards is just living a sham life, pretending to "deal with it".

Oh fuck.

I hope all those idiot psychologists and religious assholes go to hell with their stupid ideas and their vacant claims - it's all just another sham. Many desperates fall for all the sham in the world because there's just nothing else to turn to. And eventually it's time to face the facts - which are that it's something you can't walk away from. Unless you're unbelievably lucky and something or someone comes along and restores you. And when no miracles present themselves for too long, then, well, you just face facts and kill yourself.

Anyway. What do I know, right.

Friday, May 14, 2004

Lawful death

David, the guy at the Cancer Blog, died two days ago - his last post dates May 5 and family members announced his last agony in the comments to that post.

When illness finally takes you - it is Nature and Destiny against your lone mind and when it's time to go there is nothing you can do. It is like an immense mountain falling on you - you are not responsible for your own death, you are powerless against it. Such death is also a great relief. And the sense of defeat is less from such an overpowering force.

Lawful and unlawful death.


Thursday, May 13, 2004

Jail inside out

In a way I wish I would finally fall through the ground but it seems to never quite happen - and I carry on, and nothing changes.

As always, jail-time stories hit especially close to home. In addition to reading "The House of the Dead" by Dostoevsky (detailed account of his years in a pretty brutal environment that russian prisons were in the 1850's) I happened on some documentary on NBC yesterday about some rehabilitation program for inmates in a US jail.

Why do you figure some people end up in jail? Because they can't seem to find a footing in "normal life", that's why. It's not just some general "violence" or some general "crime" - it is that the parameters and the coordinates of normal life don't have enough of a hold in their minds. People literally fall out from the world and start kicking and raising hell and indulging in various shit because there's just no better option - they see a picture of the world in their head and there's just no place for them in it.

It sort of swells up from inside, this complete disconnection from mainstream life - you want to go against it and grab a piece of your own makeshift happiness and it gets you in "trouble".

But I might as well tell you that a lot of people who never have any run-ins with the law, are just as disconnected and isolated in a sort of limbo and not able to hook on. The only difference is that jail-birds kicked and pushed against the big cardboard-image of the world and finally punched a hole and went right through, and the other ones never did. But the core experience of jail is that you're estranged from the bigger world - and you're punished by depravation of liberty because you're at odds with it.

Being at odds with the world is criminal - de jure and de facto - whether you end up in jail or not.

Most criminals go back and forth between jail and freedom because whether you're on the inside or on the outside, you're perpetually disconnected from the bigger world, you live in a parallel universe, which is your real jail, the mental one. Doing time is just the visible part of it.

This is probably why I feel such affinity with inmates and jail-birds - it's not their violence and not their idiotic macho ways, it's their disconnection that is so familiar. The bigger world of "civil society" is an unending tyranny to humans - and it is a tyranny because it is so alien, so impenetrable, so overwhelming. Lots and lots of people are terrifically estranged from it. Some are violent and refuse to just lie down and die. And those end up in jail.

***

The documentary I saw was interesting because it showed how some of those guys were able to overcome the divide - not by mechanically adopting "good behavior" but by getting to understand that disconnection inside themselves, in their inner-most - recognize to just what extent this alien picture of the world made them feel like non-people and how this generated the violence and the kind of lifestyle that brought them into jail.

I mean - think about it. Why would anyone rob a bank, say? To get rich quick. But a goal such as this - to get rich - is not in any way different from the one that a businessman pursues. But the businessman is inside the world and plays by the rules - why is it that a bank robber risks breaking all rules and punishment, to get to the same goal? Why wouldn't anyone do it?

Yeah - think about it. Why. How about - because "there is no other way"? In that picture of the world in your mind that is like a stonewall impenetrable, you can't be a businessman - there is nothing you can be, in fact. You are just an eternal nobody doomed to nothingness, that's what this wall tells you. So those guys who actually stand up and go rob a bank are not quitters - they're pretty resilient people. They still want a piece of that power and that life. Pretty desperate - and pretty tough people too.

The amazing fact is that quite a few people in jail are actually extremely energetic, resourceful individuals. Severely screwed up though. And you can't expect a badly screwed-up chap to change by himself or all of a sudden. Usually it takes quite an enormous amount of support and opportunity. And though this documentary was meant to raise awareness that this support should be provided to all folks in all jails, I am quite certain that it won't happen - would need way too much money, and way too much effort, and it's on the whole much easier to just pile up people in a cage and let them rot there for years, and when they get out and then are sent back it's still easier to have it that way. Since punishment is the main concern, not rehabilitation.

Doesn't protect society from crime all that well, but it's easier. Even though jail-time costs a lot of money, it requires no thinking and no effort - and it will stay that way for a long time still. But this program was kinda inspiring to me - because it showed the mechanics of inner change in hopeless people.


Glorious blogging by e-mail

Ok, let's see how this works. Maybe I won't like it :-0

***

Hmm. Hard to refresh and see the post, but maybe it's just my browser acting up?




Pearl then, Berg now

What can't be shown on tv is freely available on the web:



And I invite you to read this reader email that Andrew Sullivan published on his blog - as to why "liberation" was bestowed on Iraq instead of Saudi Arabia who are an ugly medieval dictatorship (seen videos of public beheadings there lately?) *and* the biggest exporters of fanatical Islam (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH IRAQ) in the whole Arab world.

Why? How naive - coz they're America's friends, right? :-0


History as dissipation

The media managed to get on my nerves even as I was busy with something else entirely. While people are endlessly whining about "media bias", the obvious and infuriating problem is something else and worse - that it's so fucking short-winded.

It can't even talk - it spits in bursts of sensationalism and then gets lost as soon as that part is spent. Believe it or not, the Abu Ghraib story is already near-dead. Why? Because there are no more pics to show :-0

Today's 60 Minutes II came up with another "visual material", a video, where a US guard girl is expressing her hate and distaste for Iraqis detainees. And it's a safe bet that this is pretty much the last "scoop" they can count on.

So you know what they're doing? They're resorting to scrapping the bottom of the shit-bucket, like this: Boston Globe publishes bogus GI rape pictures. FUCK. This can't be blamed on "inexperienced journalists" - I am not a journalist by a long mile, and even I spotted this as pure unadulterated shitload when it first came up on the internet (see "blatant disinformation" bit here).

I don't know - is Boston Globe something like the Daily Mirror in UK? The Mirror is self-declared yellow-journalism. And when I am talking of "media" I do not include yellow press in that category. But Boston Globe is supposed to be "real media" - and it acts like an asshole yellow-paper. Why? Because the story is dying already, because it will be entirely dead by the end of this week, because the so-called "real media" can't hold on to things for long enough and go deep enough and be focused enough. In short - it can't talk, it just barks like mad and then loses its voice. And switches to some other shit.

FUCK.

That's how Richard Clarke's story expired almost in a week or two. It wasn't just because the WH "unleashed" its smear-campaign and blah-blah - it was mostly and largely because that same media that jumped on this story like mad got out of wind and effectively dispersed in the wind in almost no time at all. It just couldn't hold the focus and dig in. That's why.

Is that because there is no "common front" to the media? Is that because there are too many voices chattering in diverging directions? Is this because nobody knows who to listen to? Is this because of too much competition, too much frenzy for scoops, too little weight in too many statements?

Or is this all because a story about Abu Ghraib is merely followed by some story about god knows what - all in a span of 3 minutes of commercial break?

"Commercial" is the word here.

60 Minutes (I, II, and III, and IV, and hell) and The New Yorker are the last faltering bastions of that concept of "real media", by reputation more than by clear and present grip - and PBS can't compensate for that spectacular erosion.

The fact is - the so-called New Left (and I don't even know what the fuck that is) is not contributing and is a marginal ideology with fringe tactics (Democratic Underground? Che Guevara? Boston Globe??). Meanwhile the actual liberal media is dying a rapid death and apparently there is just nothing that can salvage this decline.

I am not an "expert" and I don't need to be to see this happening. Perhaps a generation bred on CNN can't be expected to come up with anything better than rabid New Left reflexes - "throw enough shit, maybe it'll stick", that sort of methodology.

Investigative journalism? Nobody's gonna pay for any of that and nobody will *wait* for that. It takes too long, and the wind blows too hard.

So. What did Abu Ghraib "teach" us? Ummm, nothing. I assure you - not a thing. Simply because talking-heads couldn't find the time or the will to really look into it, to discover what it all means, what should be changed. You do remember what happened after Richard Clarke? Yeah - nothing.

Anyway. It's probably all normal and I am over-reacting. After all I too am driven by the ephemeral media and wind is playing in my head. It's very light at the moment.

***

Update: Boston Globe issued a "correction":
Although the photograph was reduced in size between editions to obscure visibility of the images on display, at no time did the photograph meet Globe standards. Images contained in the photograph were overly graphic, and the purported abuse portrayed had not been authenticated. The Globe apologizes for publishing the photo.
Not been authenticated? Go to the porn-site mentioned in the link above and see for yourself. It's one thing to publish "obscene" images that don't meet "standards". It's quite another to present fakes for the real thing in a highly political scandal.

Something else occurred to me: it may just be that the editors at the Globe are genuinely unfamiliar with the porn lore - because anybody with any sort of experience in these images would recognize "standard" posings and "standard" close-ups, and get a clue. I suppose I'm a bit too familiar with porn, which doesn't commend me (heh) but at least saves me from taking obvious shit at face value. Kinda pathetic, really - "porn-watchers as truth-tellers" :-0




It's impolite to display your innards in polite society (as Wittgenstein not-so-famously quipped).

There is a reason for this - usually those innards are so very far removed from the outer countenance.

Anyway. Deal with it, folks.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004



I lost the moment.

Should have gone with the flow when it happened - instead I backed off and drifted away.

There is no end to this. Resolve is not something I can think up - it occurs when there is enough pain to crystalize into decision.

How much more of this blandness will I have to plough through before I arrive at another such moment?

***

My will is already in shambles and has been for years and years. So instead of doing something meaningful I am paralyzed into waiting for moments of severe despair when it just bursts open and moves me into action - I can't do it through reason alone, it's entirely powerless to move me.

***

The longer I stay alive the more senseless it all seems.

***

I've always been a coward. To an unbelievable extent. The kind of emotional coward who backs off from everything true and real. I don't even know why - it started early.

I'd love to know why. Otoh, it doesn't really matter - I have to live with this, it's a precondition of everything. It doesn't change, only gets worse. So I've been learning to detect how I can get around this - and I play myself like a piano, or I wait for the right notes to come up. The art of waiting for the right tune - but it's mostly just that, waiting.

***

Or like this: I am doing time in jail - and this jail is myself. So, obviously, the only liberation I can think of is getting out of myself. And how do you do that? Take a wild guess.

***

The worst times is when the right tune comes up and I don't play it.

Call it "inner opportunity" missed.

***

The reason I hate this world so much is because I can't imagine what sort of place I could ever find in it. It looks so entirely impenetrable and I am like a rubber ball, I fly against the wall and - guess what happens. Boing.

Heh.

I've been asked (often) what would make me happy. Good question. No answer comes to mind.

***

There is another way to look at this - nothing matters. Ok. Substract self-pity - and there is nothing left. Nobody and nothing to worry about. There should be some world to fight for and disregard all qualms. Suppose there is no such world. So what's left?

Nothing.

***

Basically, what really moves me is hate. When I am able to muster enough hate, I start moving big time. Other than that it's apathy and make-belief. Wasting time in shallow thoughts and shallow feelings.

All those extreme moral or immoral feelings about various personal and impersonal events are just sham. In fact I don't care. I can't even begin to care. May the world perish and I with it - that's pretty much the bottom-line of it.

So of course 90% of words written in this blog are entirely unnecessary and superficial. It's a fucking mask. Yeah I know - what isn't.

***

Some people scream at their tv's - I rather spit at the computer screen.

***

Blindness continues.

Sunday, May 09, 2004



What it comes down to

It's hard to describe. I look intently at the totality of my life (or what I can remember of it) and there is so clearly a pattern there. It's like a seed that sprouts and keeps growing - from nowhere, from inside who you are, and it directs everything, messes up everything.

I'm deathly tired of this outgrowth that comes from within myself. My destiny is my creature - it grew from within. And it lead here, to this spot in life, where nothing matters any more, where all routes are blocked and barred. And throughout all this growing and marching and living I was always blind and unaware what it would come down to.

Asking too much of reason and consciousness - it's impossible to know what will grow and how it will grow and from where.

***

At the same time, there were clearly moments when it wasn't just me - it was also some guiding hand, invisible as hell, that arranged things and circumstances so I may trip and fall. There were a number of such developments that I can clearly pinpoint - and maybe there were others but I can't see through the haze.

It is hard to describe in anything like a convincing manner because I am dealing here with either skewed imagination or intangibles, forces that are not recognized as existing, too invisible, too damn unaccounted for to speak of knowingly.

But for the sake of imagination, let us say there was a good and a bad angel playing me like a football, giving me a chance and a nudge or arranging traps I would fall in and things I would trip over. Let us call them "facilitators" - for good and bad.

I looked at the sharp turn in recent circumstances and I saw that the "bad facilitator" has taken over and has been arranging everything so it would all pile up on me once and for all. And so I decided to talk to him, to this not-supposed-to-exist facilitator, and frankly *asked* him to make things easy for me in the direction he most wants me to take: make it easy for me to go in the right place and buy poison without questions, make me strong and inventive, open the way and lead me by the hand.

And fuck - he did!

It is very hard to describe because the flow of reality is arranged of such small dynamically coherent moments, each by itself is insignificant but chained together it makes for a "lucky run" - sometimes everything just falls into place like a puzzle, and sometimes nothing falls into place and everything you do is wrong and doesn't work. Luck is when everything works out perfect.

***

Life is a game - it is a game that seems all important, as if nothing existed or could possibly exist outside it. Even death is viewed as part of that same game: death of other people, when they just suddenly disappear and fall out of the pattern, it leaves a hole but it's a hole in a bigger game, and you can't think outside of it.

It is hard to tear yourself away from this game - even when it's lame and boring beyond words, when it's tortuous and meaningless, still the game holds you down, you can't pull yourself away, even imagine how it would be to quit playing.

Eating, sleeping, thinking - all part of the game. And even when you're only days from taking off, still you can't stop thinking about the game and its rules - what will be after you're out, thinking of "putting your affairs in order", wondering, surmising, imagining.

People try to arrange their death according to the rules of the game - preserving dignity, not wanting strange people to rumage through your affairs afterwards, caring about how relatives would feel, what would happen to the cat. Bullshit.

Jesus - how can this be relevant? Or is it that death is not enough of a final break with the game of life? If death is not final, and there is still a connection, then it's just horrible.

Horrible.

***

The bad facilitator will help me. I have good grounds to believe the other one will not interfere. These invisible guys can screw everything up, that's something I've learned - your own will is just not enough to implement things, free-will is really just a stooge in their hands.

Yeah, I am a deathly agnostic, you can say that. I have no clue what's out there and who's in charge. But I am not a stupid rationalist who is prepared to ignore everything that goes against his theories of what life consists of. And I am not enough of an idiot to believe some bullshit that humanity adores as Scriptures.

Assholes.

In the end you just don't know. You don't know what's out there and what it all consists of - both life and death.

I've experienced things that few people have. Invisible stuff that doesn't manifest itself as a rule. What am I supposed to think then? I just don't know. I am clearly laboring on a blind level where I operate tangible moments of reality but I don't know what's behind it. It's not for me to know, let's put it this way - the blind tangible level is for people who are not supposed to know. Some do - good for them. I am not in that clique. I am "normal" and I don't have a clue, like most humans.

Life is a child's game because we are like children playing in the sand-box - we haven't got a clue. It's just pathetic. All our ideas and all our words are pathetic and childishly mindless that way. There is no such thing as "human consciousness" - there is individual consciousness, and some have a wider view than others. Very few. The vast majority are just clueless idiots. That includes all those who claim to understand something - thinkers and scientists, all that champanzee network of "great minds". They're very entertaining, but they haven't got a clue.

Air, water, earth, fire - that's part of the game. Every day I wake up and I see trees and the sky and I breath air and touch things - and all this is part of the game. That's what you must walk away from - and we're all just kids in this big sand-box. What is there to understand?

***

I am trying to think this through and I can't. No coming to grips with the final frontier - I live in blindness and I'll leave blindly.

***

Trying to imagine before hand how it would feel for the body to die. Suddenly there's a wrenching spasm and consciousness compresses to a nothing, expires like a match - and this blitz-instant will probably seem very long.

Gone.

***

There is a terrific defeat in death. Arranging one's own death is willfully submitting to this overwhelming defeat. It can't be a vindication - this is the epithome of all weakness and hopelessness.

Blindness saves from feeling this too much.

***

Until the moment it's done nothing is decided.





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