Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich has a lot in common with wealthy Wall Street bankers and corporate CEO’s. While most hedge fund managers and CEO’s have not gotten blow jobs during bass solos at concerts, Lars, bankers and CEOs agree that litigiousness is awesome, acquiring ugly expensive art collections is important and the piracy of your product is the sole locus of evil on earth. So, which quotes are from Lars?
1. “People who don’t have money don’t understand the stress.”
2. “I want to make sure I have good people on my board who aren’t going to f—k with me.”
3. “We have no obligation to make history. We have no obligation to make art. We have no obligation to make a statement. To make money is our only objective.”
4. “[We have] a tendency to jump and then start asking questions on the way down, then realize that as we get closer to the ground that there’s no safety net and realize we should have asked more questions on the way down.”
5. “Stolen’s a strong word. It’s copyrighted content that the owner wasn’t paid for.”
6. “It is therefore sickening to know that our art is being traded like a commodity rather than the art that it is. From a business standpoint, this is about piracy - aka taking something that doesn’t belong to you; and that is morally and legally wrong.”
7. “Copy protection is a balancing act because it always reduces the value of your product. State-of-the-art copy protection makes your customers hate you.”
8. “As long as they’re going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”
9. “So while we think it’s an interesting market, because it’s large, we just haven’t figured out a way to make a substantial profit in that market.”
10. “I think if anything we were just caught off guard by how passionate people were about this whole internet phenomenon at the time and it kind of blind-sided us, but we stood our ground and stuck with our principles and a lot of people now are patting us on the back and saying how right we were.”
Outgoing GOP crazypants Rep. Michele Bachmann of MN seems to have accidentally taken some sodium pentothal before sitting down for this recent interview with WorldNutDaily. In it, Rep. Bachmann states, with no equivocating (as is her wont), that if immigration reform passes, there will never again be a Republican President or a GOP ruled Senate and that they’ll eventually lose the House for good, too.
Oh, how I love these rare moments of Republican candor! But Bachmann, as true as what she is saying really is, misses the equally valid flip-side of her statement: If immigration fails to pass, there won’t be another Republican President ever again either! Win/win!!!
The Republicans, are, of course, fucked in every respect and they have only themselves—and their staggeringly stupid brand of politics—to blame. Instead they’re probably just going to point the finger at “Mexican anchor babies,” but to no avail.
You snooze you lose. For the politically tin-eared Rip Van Winkles of the Republican Party, it’s already too late.
But that’s no going to stop Reps. Bachmann, Steve King and Louie Gohmert who are reportedly planning a revolt in the House over immigration reform legislation forcing additional debate (likely to prove highly embarrassing with those three clownjobs leading the charge) on the immigration bill they say will have “dire consequences for the country.”
The minute immigration reform gets passed, you can put a fork in the Grand Old Party. Even the reddest of redneck states will start turning blue very, very quickly and there is nothing the Republicans can do about it, either. Talk about being caught between a rock and a hard place. These assholes are staring down a demographic tidal wave that is going to DROWN THEM.
Admittedly, although a one-party rule by the Democrats doesn’t sound like much of a prize—it has been pretty great for California, though, hasn’t it?—that party will be increasingly easier to reason with once the GOP—so pathologically impervious to reason, obviously—has suffered continuing electoral humiliation and diminishment at the vote of a rapidly changing American electorate.
“The purpose of my writing is to expose and arrest Nova Criminals.”
― William S. Burroughs, Nova Express
In the mid-1970s, William Burroughs wrote a monthly column for the rock magazine Crawdaddy called “Time of the Assassins” (which he got from a line of Rimbaud’s “Voici le temps des Assassins”).
Evocative, isn’t it? The “Time of the Assassins.” It has such a nice ring to it.
That we may soon be (or already are) living in an age that would require assassins struck me last week as I was watching the controversial statements made by former Nestlé CEO Peter Brabeck-Letmathe (today he is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Nestlé S.A.) who said that water should be valued like any other commodity. Brabek’s comments were made in a 2005 documentary, We Feed the World, and are today, eight years later, being scrutinized in horror and exchanged feverishly by lefties on social media. As a result, Brabek’s been on the receiving end of quite a lot of stick on Facebook and Twitter, and not without some justification, if you ask me.
Brabeck’s flawed “free market” remarks betray such a peculiarly evil “logic” that only an extremely wealthy man, far, far removed from the rest of humanity, could have conceived of it:
My name is Peter Brabeck. I’m from Villach in Carinthia. And for the past 7-years I’ve been head of the Nestlé Group, the largest foodstuff corporation in the world, with a turnover of around 90 billion Swiss francs or around $65 billion, and with around 275,000 employees working directly for us. So, it’s quite a large ship. We’re the twenty-seventh largest company in the world.
Today, people believe that everything that comes from Nature is good. That represents a huge change because until recently, we always learnt that Nature could be pitiless. Man is now in the position of being able to provide some balance to Nature, but in spite of this, we have something approaching a shibboleth that everything that comes from Nature is good. A very good example is the organic movement. Organic is now best. But organic is not best.
After 15-years of eating GM food products in the USA, not one single case of illness has occurred from eating them to date. And in spite of this, we’re all so uneasy about it in Europe that something might happen to us. It’s hypocrisy more than anything else.
Ah yes, if you overlook what that benevolent gangsta Monsanto is doing to the soil and the water in much of the country and the fact that our vegetables have mere fractions of the nutrients they used to (like apples and spinach), then, yeah, I see his point. LOL.
There’s that lovely old Austrian folk song: “The dear cattle need water, hollera, holleri,” if you remember. Water is of course the most important raw material we have today in the world. It’s a question of whether we should privatize the normal water supply for the population. And there are two different opinions on the matter.
The one opinion which I think is extreme, is represented by the NGOs, who bang on about declaring water a public right. That means that as a human being you should have a right to water. That’s an extreme solution.
It’s an extreme position to expect… water? Wait, wait, come on, let’s let the man who is the Chairman of the world’s largest multinational manufacturer of bottled water define his terms, before we lay into him, shall we:
And the other view says that water is a foodstuff like any other and like any other foodstuff it should have a market value. Personally, I believe it’s better to give foodstuff a value, so that we’re all aware that it has a price, and then that one should take specific measures for the part of the population that has no access to this water and there are many different possibilities there.
Okay, folks, I’ve heard enough, go ahead get your knives out for this bastard.
And if that wasn’t bad enough already, then he really goes off into the stratosphere:
I’m still of the opinion that the biggest social responsibility of any CEO is to maintain and ensure the successful and profitable future of his enterprise. For only if we can ensure our continued long term existence will we be in the position to actively participate in the solution of the problems that exist in the world.
What.The.Fuck.Is.This.Guy.Talking.About? The obesity or diabetes epidemics he’s done his part for, perchance? Brabeck-Letmathe helmed goddamned Nestlé for seven years! It’s the largest foodstuff corporation in the entire world and just look at what their over-packaged, corn syrup-heavy product lines consist of! Nestlé, the corporation that ran a massive advertising campaign in Africa discouraging breast feeding and then sold African mothers powdered milk, which they diluted with dirty water resulting in the deaths of literally millions of infants? (The UN had to get involved!) Nestlé the corporation that turns a blind eye to child labor practices… That Nestlé?
I’d trust Peter Brabeck—who started working for the corporation in 1968 and was the 2007 recipient of a “Black Planet” award given for destroying the environment, monopolizing water resources and tolerating child labor—and Nestlé‘s shareholders with the water supply of a Third World nation like I’d trust a fuckin’ coyote to keep an eye on my Chihuahua. A Russian hacker with all my online banking passwords. A famished shark with my good luck ham.... (Sorry, I think I got carried away there).
First it will be some country we’ve never heard of and will never visit in our lives. Next thing you know, a Republican governor will be proposing to privatize the water supply in a southern state… because, you know, the freemarket is more efficient than the private sector or perhaps just because a Swiss multinational food company donated a shit-ton of money to his campaign ....
We’re in the position of being able to create jobs: 275,000 here, 1.2 million who are directly dependent on us in principle. That makes around 4.5 million people in total—because behind each of our employees are another 3 people, so we have at least 4.5 million people who are directly dependent on us.
Because the world needs moar Kit-Kats! The idea that the notoriously predatory Nestlé is somehow “a part” of the solution to poverty at this advanced stage of capitalism’s life cycle is surrealism at its best. Brabek’s like a caricature of a crazed Bilderberger. I half-expect him to goosestep around wearing a paper Burger King crown and tissue boxes on his feet in his private moments. He is Alfred Jarry’s Ubu Roi, incarnate. Ah Pook is here!
The part of the video clip that has nothing to do with privatizing water is actually the best bit, in terms of the off-the-scale absurdity of this privileged man’s blinkered 1% vantage point.. on the “little people”:
If you want to create work, you have to work yourself, not as it was in the past, where existing work was distributed. If you remember the main argument for the 35-hour-week was that there would be a certain amount of work and it would be better if we worked less and distributed the work amongst more people. That has proved quite clearly to be wrong. If you want to create more work you have to work more yourself. And with that we’ve got to create a positive image of the world for people, and I see absolutely no reason why we shouldn’t be positive about the future. We’ve never had it so good, we’ve never had so much money, we’ve never been so healthy, we’ve never lived as long as we do today. We have everything we want, and still we go around as if we were in mourning for something.
The Japanese. You can see how modern those factories are; highly robotized, almost no people.
(Shakes head) You get the picture. I present to you, solely on the basis that he spoke these words (which he ostensibly seems to believe), that the man is a criminally insane psychopathic wanker. He has the worldview of a sociopath top executive of a large multinational, which of course, he is. If Peter Brabek were willing to share his nine million euros a year salary with some of Nestlé‘s rank and file workers in Bangladesh, I’ll bet they’d be JUST FINE with with cutting back their work week and spending more quality time with their kids instead of slaving in sub-human working conditions to make Hot Pockets that’ll be bought on a credit card at Wal-Mart by a morbidly obese couch potato living in Georgia… Just sayin’...
Naturally, seeing the consternation his words have unleashed, Brabeck tried to back-peddle furiously, limiting the damage that his 2005 remarks have caused in an essay that he (or more than likely a PR flunky at Nestlé) wrote for Huffington Post (Whose side are they on, anyway? Brabeck or humanity’s?)
At its heart, though, is still the kernel of the idea that it’s a good idea to put a price tag on water:
I do need to correct a misconception that has fueled a lot of the criticism on Facebook and elsewhere.
I do not deny that clean and safe water to drink or for basic hygiene is a human right. Of course it is.
However, I do not think it is right that some people in the world do not have access to a clean, safe supply when others can use excess amounts for non-essential purposes without bearing a fairer cost for the infrastructure needed to supply it.
When we give water a value, we use it more carefully, and this does not mean privatization.
Sounds almost high-minded, don’t it? I love this part, too:
Why does a company like Nestlé care about this?
Our consumers need access to clean, safe water and decent sanitation, wherever they are in the world, as do our hundreds of thousands of employees, their families and friends. As a good global citizen, we have a responsibility to be part of the solution.
And to skim a little off the top and then eventually skim a lot off the top... Hey, that’s capitalism, baby! The first sip is free!
Which brings us full circle back to William Burroughs: In The Naked Lunch, the author laid out a nightmarish vision of an out-of-control, planet-destroying consumer culture addicted to that which will most certainly kill it, with the metaphor of a junkie hooked on, and controlled by his metabolic need for heroin.
As Burroughs wrote to Jack Kerouac:
“The title means exactly what the words say: naked lunch, a frozen moment when everyone sees what is on the end of every fork.”
“The little people” are what will be on the end of Nestlé‘s fork if elitist viewpoints like Peter Brabek’s hold sway over public debate. It’s an idea that should be stomped out with extreme mob violence, if you ask me. Eliminated from the conversation.
I think it’s fair to say that 100% of the human race is “addicted” to water and this is why, when I listened to what Herr Brabeck had to say, I thought of William Burroughs and wondered, if he were alive, what he would make of all this.
What chance does the human race have with enemies of Earth like this, when vast monied interests and multinationals start to have designs on our drinking water?
Is it an absolute truism that the most strident, vociferous homophobes are always self-hating closeted gays? Judging from the dozens upon dozens of anti-gay Christian activists and conservative pols who have been “outed” over the years, it would seem to be an immutable law of that particular brand of assholism.
And speaking of assholes, Liberal radio host Alan Colmes very nearly got rabidly anti-gay, hate-filled Christian hater Bryan Fischer to admit to something truly hilarious on his show the other day.
Read between the lines of this exchange:
Colmes: Have you ever had a gay impulse?
Fischer: (Laughing) Alan, I am not going to talk about that ...
Colmes: I’m just wondering ...
Fischer: Alan, I’m not going to go there. Give it a rest Alan ...
Colmes: It’s a simple yes or no question.
Fischer: We’re not going to talk about that.
Colmes: Because maybe if you’ve been able to overcome your gay impulses and you’ve been successful in doing it, you could be a model for other people you’d like to see act the same way.
See what he did there? Standing ovation!
Fischer: The focus here, Alan, is that everybody experiences sexual impulses that if they acted on those impulses, it would destroy them.
Colmes: Well, can you give me an example from your own life? What would be some of yours?
Fischer: You’ve experienced them ...
Colmes: I have?
Fischer: I’ve experienced them. Every man, every woman has experienced certain sexual impulses that, if they acted on them, if they conducted themselves by yielding to those impulses, it would destroy them. Ask Tiger Woods about that.
Nice try, Bryan, but he’s asking YOU.
Colmes: I don’t think I’ve ever had sexual impulses that would destroy the society or the culture or make me a deviant in some way. I honestly don’t think that’s ever happened, even in your eyes, so I’m surprised. I wonder what impulses you’re talking about. If you’ve had them, I’d love to know what they are.
Fischer: Well the focus Alan is on sexual conduct, sexual behavior, not on sexual impulse ...
Colmes: So you won’t tell me whether you yourself have been able to overcome a gay impulse?
Fischer: Alan, give it a rest.
Getting a little squirmy there, are we Bry?
What’s Fischer hiding? It is, as Colmes said during the conversation, a simple yes or no question. He knows what the answer is, just like anyone else would and yet curiously, he chose not to say. Somehow I think that if the answer was, ahem, a straightforward “no” he would have just said “no” without hesitation.
But he didn’t. You don’t need to be Alex Jones (or much of an amateur psychoanalyst, either) to draw certain observations from this unintentionally revealing exchange…
Hopefully this question will dog Bryan Fischer around for the rest of his fuckin’ life… or at least until he’s caught with a “traveling companion” he met on Grindr…
The London offices of Shell, BP, Statoil and Platts, the world’s leading oil price reporting agency, were raided yesterday by European Commission inspectors, investigating allegations of collusion in price-fixing over the past 11 years.
After last year’s Libor scandal, these new allegations of price-fixing look set to be a further damning indictment (if ever that were needed) of capitalism and the unfettered greed of its corporations.
If the allegations are true, then it again shows how prices are based NOT on true cost, but on an arbitrary figure dreamed-up to give as much money to a selfish, spineless, avaricious few.
The price people pay for oil is based on a “benchmark” which is calculated by price reporting agencies based on data received from firms such as oil companies, banks and hedge funds, which all trade oil on a daily basis. It is these submissions which the EC suspect are possibly fraudulent.
A spokesman for the European Commission said:
“The commission has concerns that companies may have colluded in reporting distorted prices to a price reporting agency to manipulate the published prices for a number of oil and biofuel products.
Officials carried out unannounced inspections at the premises of several companies active in and providing services to crude oil, refined oil products and biofuels sectors.
Even small distortions of assessed prices may have a huge impact on the prices of crude oil, refined oil products and biofuels purchases purchases and sales, potentially harming final consumers.”
The price fixing of fuel just doesn’t hit drivers—everything that is dependent on road haulage is directly affected by such underhand collusion—food prices, heating, public transport costs—all are increased and the costs will always hit the poorest worst.
According to the Guardian, Lord Oakeshott, former Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman, said:
the alleged rigging of oil prices was “as serious as rigging Libor” – which led to banks being fined hundreds of millions of pounds.
He demanded to know why the UK authorities had not taken action earlier and said he would ask questions of the British regulator in Parliament. “Why have we had to wait for Brussels to find out if British oil giants are ripping off British consumers?” he said. “The price of energy ripples right through our economy and really matters to every business and families.”
As yet, there is no fixed date for the conclusion of the EC investigation. Read the full story here.
Who knows what event, large or small will cause the tipping point to be reached and trigger the long-overdue revolution, but frankly, when I read something like this, I can’t imagine that it’s going to take all that much longer before the general population wants to parade the 1% down Fifth Avenue… with their bloody heads on spikes.
The “black-market Disney guides” run $130 an hour, or $1,040 for an eight-hour day.
“My daughter waited one minute to get on ‘It’s a Small World’ — the other kids had to wait 2 1/2 hours,” crowed one mom, who hired a disabled guide through Dream Tours Florida.
“You can’t go to Disney without a tour concierge,’’ she sniffed. “This is how the 1 percent does Disney.”
The woman said she hired a Dream Tours guide to escort her, her husband and their 1-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter through the park in a motorized scooter with a “handicapped” sign on it. The group was sent straight to an auxiliary entrance at the front of each attraction.
Disney allows each guest who needs a wheelchair or motorized scooter to bring up to six guests to a “more convenient entrance.”
How about that, huh? Hands up, if there would be no legal repercussions from kicking this woman to death, how many of you would put the boot in?
Dr. Wednesday Martin, a social anthropologist discovered that the Dream Tours line-cutting scheme was something well-known to Manhattan’s wealthy elite:
“It’s insider knowledge that very few have and share carefully,” said social anthropologist Dr. Wednesday Martin, who caught wind of the underground network while doing research for her upcoming book “Primates of Park Avenue.”
“Who wants a speed pass when you can use your black-market handicapped guide to circumvent the lines all together?” she said. “So when you’re doing it, you’re affirming that you are one of the privileged insiders who has and shares this information.”
It would be (too) easy to whip up an editorial tirade about this, but why bother when the “party” is going to be over soon enough anyway?
The glaring twin ironies at play here seem to be missed entirely by the dum-dum tea baggers: First, that the folks who consider themselves Tea partiers correspond pretty faithfully to the same demographic who still read newspapers in printed form and who are receiving, or who soon enough will receive Social Security benefits and Medicare.
Why not try to elect Republican candidates who will cut your own benefits so that billionaires can amass greater and great hordes of cash? Psst, hey Tea party people, the Republican party wants to cut benefits for white seniors too! [And guess what: SO DO MOST OF THE FUCKING DEMOCRATS—INCLUDING OBAMA!]
I don’t think those ‘baggers have really thought any of this stuff through.
The other thing is, who will replenish the Tea party ranks when these dickheads die off? Will this message resonate much with all of those recent college grads with debt up to their eyeballs, and no job prospects that pay higher than ten bucks an hour?
I fantasized about punching this guy in the face as I watched this.
“If a dirty old man in a park showed ten-year-old children the graphic images Planned Parenthood pedals as education, he would be arrested. Planned Parenthood shows this smut to children and is awarded with more taxpayer money and the ability to determine the efficacy of its sex indoctrination, so it can get even more taxpayer money. It is time to stop this madness!”
It must be really difficult for a certain type of conservative Republican to watch Arthur Miller’s classic play The Crucible without wistfully wondering if they were born in the wrong century. The timeless drama, still widely read in US high schools, is, of course, is a scathing commentary on McCarthyism and a peculiar strand of American political extremism, but this would be totally lost on today’s Tea party dum-dums who would simply be envious of all that witch burning people used to get up to in Salem, Massachusetts! Their modern day bluenose counterparts may have to miss out on all that fun “mob rule” stuff they got up to in the 17th century, but the mentality lives on.
Take for instance the new “report,” produced by the “American Life League” (ALL), a feverish, mentally-challenged clip that aims to expose “Sex Incorporated” –aka Planned Parenthood—the bad, very bad, very horribly terrible, terrible people who EDUMICATE our children ALL WRONG and turn them into PREGNANT SEX FIENDS, GAY HOMOSEXUALS or WORSE. Why wouldn’t the heathen, Marxist smart people working at The New York Times and The Washington Post take their good, clean Christian American money to run their ridiculous ad?
Of course the “American Life League” knew well in advance that the Times and Post were never going to publish the video on their website, but that wasn’t the point. The point was instead to be turned down so they could send out a press release saying boo-hoo, “we were censored” by “the Left” and spread the word that way (See how that works? Calvin Klein ads in the past have used the same modus operandi, it’s a time honored public relations tactic). Stir it up and give the reichwing blogs something to get worked into a tizzy over, then follow that up with a statement, decrying censorship from the mainstream media (being seen as a martyr is good business for conservative causes) and well, you just have to read it:
While most Americans associate Planned Parenthood with abortion, this organization is also in the business of promoting a deviate and dangerous sexual agenda that in the long run will benefit the abortion giant’s bottom line, while creating a destructive and broken society for the rest of us.
Planned Parenthood has proven that it is a sex business that self-perpetuates itself by first developing obscene sex education materials that promote indiscriminate and risky sexual behavior to our youth through America’s public schools, families and community organizations.
The second step kicks in once the organization has created an environment of sexual risk-taking behavior among youth. It then markets and promotes contraceptive products and programs that have proven to be ineffective in preventing unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.
Once the ineffective contraceptives fail, Planned Parenthood completes the cycle selling abortions to the teens it has sucked into its deadly cyclone. Tax-paying Americans who work diligently to contribute to strengthening our country are unwittingly funding the absolutely pornographic and child sexual abuse agenda that Planned Parenthood pushes on our society.
Planned Parenthood is like a drug pusher, don’t cha see, don’t cha see getting America’s kids into SEX—masturbation is the gateway drug—just so these PERVERTS can distribute condoms with holes in them and birth control pills that are really only SweetTarts and collect all of those PHAT ABORTION FEES! Planned Parenthood wants to turn kids into sex addicts. That’s the REAL plan of Planned Parenthood! It’s so diabolical that Satan hisself must be personally running the organization…
ANYWAY… so now cue all of the concern trolls who will write in asking me “So then why do you keep writing about these assholes? Just ignore them (and Alex Jones, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Glenn Beck, Louie Gohmert, etc, etc) and they’ll go way.”
You really think so, do you?
Stuff like this should be out in the open and it should be covered by the mainstream and not so mainstream outlets like this one. “Sunlight is the best disinfectant” as Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said.
Personally, I think this LOL stupid video, and the group of twits behind it, deserves to have mockery heaped upon them. Seriously, watch this (NSFW) and tell me if this made you think their message was perfectly reasonable or BARKING FUCKING MAD…
This insane video does not help their cause even one tiny little bit. It would convince no one of anything except that the folks behind it are a bunch of fucking idiots. That’s all that’s being achieved by ALL with this comedy, they’re hurting their own cause in the process of spreading the word about it.
I’m quite happy to oblige them in pursuit of these goals. Enjoy!
About half my earliest memories consist of being buggied about London by my mum on anti-Thatcher demos. The witch stuff, to me, ain’t even a metaphor. When I was a kid, the boundary between fairytale and contemporary history simply didn’t exist—it was as if an evil witch was in charge of our United Kingdom, and the only way happiness could be restored was if she could be killed… or voted out.
This was the weird thing. Every election, she’d win, and my mother would literally weep with hatred and disappointment. People obviously voted Wicked Witch Party. I didn’t get it.
It was partly this childhood mystification that saw me attend Margaret Thatcher’s funeral procession in London yesterday…
I arrived at St Clement Danes Church about the same time as Thatcher’s coffin, which was shortly to make its way to St Paul’s along disappointingly busy streets. Heavily decorated paratroopers stood trembling with psychopathic rigidity outside the entrance to the church, and an additional police presence to those lining the road patrolled the pavement—portly, distinguished old coppers in white-gloves.
Besides these various showings of Establishment muscle, the streets were filling up with the Establishment’s biggest admirers—flag-waving patriots thronging the pavements, plus significant amounts of tourists, and the odd gutsy protester, planted right in the midst of a hostile crowd.
I stopped to listen to one of these, a Welsh ex-miner with a conspicuous banner, as he conducted an interview with the BBC. He was asked if he thought a funeral an “appropriate” place to protest. “When is the time to protest?” he responded, “Where is the place in this country where they say, come along, protest, and we’ll listen to what you’ve got to say.” It was a good point, and passionately made, but as I stood scribbling his answer into my notebook I felt something push against an elbow.
Looking up, I saw a giant copper peering skeptically down at me. The thing touching me was his rigid, vast belly. I stared back, rather surprised. His message was clear. The television crew was welcome to interview this political subhuman—they could be relied upon to edit his measured responses into banality (or worse)—but a writer, unaffiliated with any obvious outfit, was suspect.
I took the policeman’s tacit advice and moved on, leaving the ex-miner to the milling wolves. I heard someone say that most of the protesters were gathered at Ludgate Circus further up, and decided to check it out. En route, the military procession began, countless gleaming platoons blasting out great slabs of murder muzak—rolling drums and hyperactive brass augmented with the heavy tread of boots.
They all seemed to express the same message: the Establishment possessed the power, and the firepower; it always did exactly what it wanted and it honored whoever it wished to.
Up ahead I could begin to make out the protesters, a dense scrum of them on one side of the junction, the rest of which thronged with Witch fans. Even in these more significant numbers (there must have been a few hundred crammed together) these protesters’ gumption was noteworthy. A snarling line of police stood right in front of them; veterans on the other side of the junction jeered at them, and occasionally a fresh platoon arrived via Blackfriars, so that a hundred gun barrels and twice as many gimlet eyes swept across them.
Meanwhile, the mass media swarmed around, the journalists wearing the gleeful expressions of vultures come upon carrion, all busily ripping off the crowd’s rottener strips to present to their audiences.
I went around the back of the protesters, up a little further and came to a halt. From the last quarter mile or so to St Paul’s the pavement looked too busy to bother trying to squeeze through.
Around me, there were local bankers and lawyers, retired servicemen, frail and wholly likable old ladies, sporty closet fascists, and entire suburban family units.
Most intriguing, however, was a large but seemingly disparate contingent of middle-aged Essex women, all of them with long blond hair, massive moles, and tight smiles. Many of these were very bellicose concerning the protesters. One of them kept telling her friend that it was only the possibility of arrest that stopped her going over and attacking one dawdling nearby. I thought she was full of shit, but perhaps not, because when Thatcher’s coffin finally approached, and the only thing that could be heard was booing and chanting, she raised herself on a bollard and screamed, “YOU BUNCH OF FACKIN SCUMBAGS,” sparking a storm of applause and cheering.
As the coffin passed through all this noise, draped in the Union Jack and surrounded by soldiers and police on horseback and on foot, my thoughts turned to Thatcher’s close friendship with Jimmy Savile.
What does being fantastic pals with a man who was perhaps history’s most prolific child rapist say about someone?
As I noted in a DM article last year, Savile claimed to have spent “eleven consecutive Christmases at Chequers” with the Thatcher family: “Denis, me and her, shoes off in front of the fire.” Cute.
Sir Jimmy, of course, was buried with similar military pomp.
The average right-winger, you’ve got to say, couldn’t spot a psychopath if one was stabbing them repeatedly in the face.
There’s another update in the story of Barronelle Stuztman, the florist in Washington state who is being sued by the state’s Attorney General Bob Ferguson in a consumer protection lawsuit for refusing to “participate in the marriage,” as she put it, of two gay men because of her “relationship with Jesus Christ.” Now the couple disrespected by the proprietor of Arlene’s Flowers, who would not sell them flowers for their wedding due to her belief that the Bible teaches “marriage is between a man and a woman” is fighting back. Via The Stranger:
Robert Ingersoll and Curt Freed’s lawyers, working with the legal powerhouse at the ACLU of Washington, sent a letter today to Arlene’s Flowers owner Baronelle Stutzman saying she has two options: (1) She can vow to never again discriminate in her services for gay people, write an apology letter to be published in the Tri-City Herald, and contribute $5,000 to a local LGBT youth center, or (2) she can get sued for violating the Washington State Civil Rights Act.
Stutzman’s law firm, Gourly Bristol Hembree, responded to the AG on Monday with a letter promising “an immediate challenge in federal court” and contend that their client is entitled to act according to her religious convictions and that discrimination isn’t the issue. Furthermore, from what I can understand, they’re saying that the art of floral arrangement is an act of personal expression so that any demand or limitation on those expressive flower arrangements is a violation of Baronelle Stutzmans’s First Amendment rights to free speech.
Good luck with that floral arrangement defense, boys, you’ll be laughed out of the fucking courtroom for that one.
Naturally this will be portrayed in the conservative media as anti-religious bigotry, as opposed to the regular, straight-up bigotry bigotry that Barronelle Stutzman inflicted on the same-sex couple. As if bigotry becomes somehow okay when it’s justified by the words of desert-dwelling nomads in a supposedly magic book from 2000 years ago.
“I don’t know what the symbol would be, I’d have to think about that. [A cross? The vesica pisces? A sheep? Alfred E. Neuman? Just some thoughts] We’re getting to the point where these homofascists are going to force us to wear on our sleeves some kind of identifying marker so people will know who the racists and the homophobes and the bigots are, and can stay away from them.”
Irony deficient Fischer is, of course, conveniently forgetting that homosexuals were made to wear inverted pink triangles armbands and patches in Nazis concentration camps. But when has being an idiot ever stopped Bryan Fischer from flapping his lips? Never!
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