April 14th, 2005

flavored with age

Sighing out a whole interior universe: cleanup on Aisle ∞

Ever have one of those days where you feel like everything you do is wrong, and everyone around you seems determined to reinforce that feeling? Me too.

Anyway. Not too long before shutting down for the night, I polished off another chapter of The Second World War: A Complete History by Martin Gilbert, and then made the mistake of following it up by scooting around Town Hall and some of the other conservative websites in aid of following the latest David Horowitz/Michael Berube bitch-pitching. (If you don't know who those people are, you're better off than me.) Ignoring all the other bullshit I knowingly exposed myself to, I noticed this whole "cheaters never prosper"/"evil contains the seeds of its own destruction"/"freedom will always triumph in the end" theme threaded through a lot of conservative writing, especially on the Iraq war.

This is interesting to me for any number of reasons. First, I don't buy it. It's not that I'm not optimistic (sometimes); I think things can be very good (and very bad) in cycles. I'm just a big dubious of the idea that it's inevitable, or that we have as much control over our ends as we like to tell ourselves. As it stands now, freedom and democracy are trailing tyrrany and oppression by a deficit of 6,000 years to 250. And, of course, you can play the half-empty/half-full game all day long: those in favor of this argument will point out that Hitler eventually lost, but those against will point out that to the millions and millions of people he had killed, his eventual defeat was a pretty empty comfort. To them, he did win.

Beyond that, there's the interesting rhetorical flourish employed in all other-directed victimizing propaganda: the enemy, whether it's Jews or blacks or women or Muslim terrorists or liberals or whatever, must be portrayed as simultaneously superior and inferior. The blacks, say white supremacists, are lazy and weak and degenerate and stupid; but they are also violent and menacing and horrid and unstoppable. The Jews, said the Nazis, were subhuman, base and filthy, but they were also brilliant and nefarious and omnipresent. The dictators and terrorists, we are told today, will never win, because evil contains the seeds of its own destruction; the terrorists, we are told today, will inevitably win if we don't keep a constant watchful eye and strong hand in play. It's a totally impossible contradiction that cannot be reconciled, and yet the pattern is always the same: the Other is weak and cowardly and inferior; the Other can never win because he is beneath us. The Other is strong and determined and cunning; the Other will inevitably win if we do not destroy him.

Another thing I can't do well: write posts that make sense.
flavored with age

Remember when I used to save this stuff for my website?

IF FRANK CAPRA HAD BEEN DIAGNOSED AS SEVERELY DEPRESSED

The Bitter Tears of General Yen
It Happened One Night, But It Traumatized Me for Life
Mr. Deeds Goes to Seed
Lost, Sad and Broken Horizon
You Can't Take It with You, So Why Bother?
Mr. Smith Goes to the Oven
Why
Do We Fight?
Arsenic and Old Reviews
It's a Miserable Life
Pocketful of Quaaludes


IF NEIL SIMON HAD BEEN A SERIAL KILLER

Come Blow Your Head Off
Buried in the Park
The Dead Couple
The Out-of-Timers
Last of the Red Hot Pokers
The Neckbreak Kid
Goodbye, Girl
Broadway Bound and Gagged
Bright and Bleached Membranes
The Slugged Wife


IF NORMAN LEAR HAD BEEN A RIGHT-WING CONSERVATIUVE
Please Do Not Start Any Revolutions, With or Without Me
Sanctity of Marriage, American Style
All in the Traditional Two-Parent Family
Sanford and Illegitimate Son
Shut Up, Maude
Good Times (If You're Rich and White)
Mary Heartless, Mary Heartless
No Gays at a Time
f.i.r.e. Pablo
Hanging Blacks


In other news, go snipers!
flavored with age

Screw you, these dumb jokes are cheering me up

IF STEVEN SEAGAL HAD THE WORD "JUMBO" IN ALL HIS MOVIE TITLES
Hard to Kill Jumbo
Marked for Jumbo
Out for Jumbo
Jumbo Seige
On Jumbo's Ground
Executive Jumbo
The Jumbo Man
The Fire Down Below Jumbo
Belly of the Jumbo
Half Past Jumbo


IF PAULY SHORE HAD BEEN A SOVIET SOCIALIST-REALIST

18-Year Plan Again
Resolutely Pauly
Decadent Bourgeoisie Encino Man
A Day in the Life of Ivan Weaselovitch
In the Invincible Soviet Red Army Now
Jury Duty to the Glorious Motherland
People's Revolutionary Bio-Dome
Curse of the Wretched Running Dog Capitalist Inferno
The Bogus Witch, Planted Here by Backsliding Counterrevolutionary Elements to Trick Us, Project
Pauly Shore is Dead, Having Sacrificed His Life in Order to Protect His Comrades


NOTE: Did you know that Pauly Shore once played Lenny Bruce in a film? If that's not the very definition of sacrelige, I don't know what is. Also, Steven Seagal is in the upcoming Onion movie as a character called "Cock Puncher".
flavored with age

I only like memes that allow my to indulge my colossal ego

Okay, I know I'm totally corroding everyone's LJ with this, but screw.

The rules are below, my answers to tamisevens, calamityjon and prettykate (edited to add: ezrael) are under the cut.

1. Leave me a comment saying, "Interview me."

2. I will respond by asking you five questions. I get to pick the questions.

3. You will update your LJ with the answers to the questions.

4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.

5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

Collapse )