Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Mermaid Apocalypse: Social Engineering through Memetic Overkill

 A lot of people have asked me over the past ten years how you can tell if a symbol-set is circulating through the culture through synchronistic means as opposed to being injected into the culture by conscious design. 

My answer has always been that if a symbol or meme is popping up at weird intervals and no one is paying much attention to it, then it's probably synchronicity.

On the other hand, if you're constantly getting hammered in the face with a symbol or meme, and it's the same goddamn note being struck over and over again, then that's a campaign.

A lot of people laughed at me when I started talking about the Siren and the Mermaid Apocalypse. I guess a lot of folks figured I finally cracked my casing and was losing myself in some obsessive idée fixe. This Mermaid thing was all just another passing fad, like Pogs or fidget spinners. Only it's actually been raging for several years now.

Having made my living in the merchandising, licensing and marketing of pop culture and consumer products for over 30 years I think I can spot a fad by now. I've seen all kinds of them come and go. This isn't a fad.

This is a Program.

This Program is coordinated and it's been budgeted, conferenced and war-gamed. It's a multimedia effort, using film, theatre, music, television, publishing, licensed apparel, and recreational activity programs. It seems to have long outlived the span or your usual fad.

It also feels very much like a top-down imperative to me because I can't imagine that everyone else isn't sick to death of fucking Mermaids already.

But make note: Mermaid-Mania isn't selling you a fantasy, it's selling you a lifestyle. This isn't just something you experience vicariously through movies or books, it's something you become

Aside from books like that above, there're all kinds of tutorials online on Mermaiding, including YouTube videos with millions of views.

Mermaid academies and programs are popping up everywhere. So much so that some localities are growing concerned over the safety of mermaid tails in public pools. But the Mermaid Apocalypse rolls on, undaunted. 

Now, I'm all for anything that gets kids to exercise and I think fantasy play is not only healthy but essential for their development. Under normal circumstances I wouldn't look twice at this stuff. 

The problem is I can't separate it from the blatant social engineering at work.

Like this; this isn't from Girl's Life or Seventeen, it's from Cosmopolitan. Is it just me or do you find it odd that what is essentially a sex-tips magazine is using a prepubescent girl to plug mermaid workout gear?

And then there's this outfit, which is promoting the transgender lifestyle for children. Leaving aside the gay-erasure implications of this program (or the fact that androgyny is a normal part of childhood development for many kids, gay or straight), it's a little more than troubling that there's so much subtle anti-parent/anti-family messaging coming from an NGO that actively seeks to remove transgender children as young as five from their homes (an effort being written into law in some places) if the parents don't go along with the Mermaids. 

But if you raise an eyebrow at this, you're automatically branded transphobic. Which is kind of like telling someone they're anti-airplane because they don't want their tax dollars going to build stealth bombers.

And if you suspect this is all an intermediate stage to some future program, you're not only transphobic but a paranoid nutcase. But let me ask you this- say I told you ten years ago that a major world government would unilaterally declare there are 50-something genders and if you didn't agree with that you could be fucking sent to prison, what would you say to that?

You'd say I was batshit crazy.

But look at how the mainstream media is pushing this thing-- becoming a Mermaid is magical and empowering. Every buzzword in the lexicon is being used to push this thing. Most importantly, it's being sold as a way to liberate yourself from the restraints of normal life. 

Oh, you don't know the half of it.

Not only that but you can make a living at Mermaiding, too. All kinds of opportunities for "professional mermaids" are popping up everywhere. Coming to your town soon.

Not only a living, but a very good living. And as regular Secret Sun readers expect by now, the Mermaid lifestyle is being hitched up with the vegan lifestyle. Or the Vega lifestyle. Whatever. 

The point here is that everyone not only needs to be separated from one another, they need to be unremittingly hostile towards each other as well.

Just ask this guy.

And special Mermaid food is being pushed, using colors naturally repellent to landwalkers, prone to millennia of evolutionary signaling. Seriously; does that actually look like something you want to eat? 

Don't worry, guys-- there's a place for you in the fishtank, too. Well, for some of you. This ad is for a popular watering-hole in Sacramento, the capital of California. Because California.

And of course that push is being draped in the usual charitable-therapeutic costumery, which never fails to soften any lingering resistance. Or at least discourage it.

You can sneak the most destructive trends into the body politic that way. It's done all the time.

And fellas, if you can't find a spot in the fishtank, then certainly try the Mermaid Olympics. Filed under AWESOME, apparently.

No, seriously- the Mermaid Olympics.* 

And as always, the BBC is right behind the push. When are they ever not? I mean, ever seen the sculpture on their London headquarters?

And right on schedule...

...there's this season's critical darling, The Shape of Water.  

Guillermo Del Toro was wise to press all the right buttons and all the right people are on his side with this, which gets my tinfoil vibrating. It just seems off for a movie like this from a guy like that. But the truly stunning thing about this film for me is that it's being pushed as a feminist triumph. 

I'll tell you why in a moment.

Then there are puff pieces like this-- this one is from the toxic pixel-rag Jezebel-- celebrating the interspecies romance of the picture. Because why not? Are you a specieist, too? You some kind of shaved-ape supremacist or something? Check your privilege, surface-man.

And of course, the aggregate has the overwhelming majority of the respondents saying, yes, of course we'll do it with the Fish-Man. Because our souls were ripped away from our bodies by the anti-humanist educational system. Plus, Tumblr.

A plurality do add certain preconditions, but otherwise, let the good times roll. 

Is it just me or something way off about this? 

I still haven't seen The Shape of Water yet, but intend to as soon as I can. All the more so since everything I've seen and read of it is reminding me not so much of Hellboy and BPRD comics but of another comic altogether. 

And that's Alan Moore's incredibly controversial Neonomicon series from 2010 (part of his Lovecraft Universe trilogy) in which a female FBI agent is kidnapped by a Old One-worshipping sex and murder cult (in Salem, Mass) and locked in an underground chamber with a Fish-Man uncomfortably similar to the creature Doug Jones plays.

This rather-troubling parallel was noticed early on by at least one comics site, but all seems to have vanished in the monsoon of gushing praise The Shape of Water has received. Del Toro's lawyers should have people out there destroying the extant copies of this thing.

Back to Neonomicon shortly.

What's the messaging being pushed with all of this? 

The Mermaid Apocalypse gospel is a message of separation; pulling away from your family, your culture, your lifestyle; pretty much everything that makes you who you are. But this goes way above and beyond the Bernays-type, Century of the Self of social atomizing here.  This is crossing over to species atomization. 

Just look at the imagery used to push this thing. You'd have no reason not to believe these are actually mermaids and not just morons with rubber tails.

And in that sense it's a more-ambitious variation of what we're seeing on college campuses and the high-tech world. But here the very young are being conditioned to no longer even see themselves as human, never mind a part of their families, their culture or their history. 

And the way you do that is to condition the desired future Smart-Citizens to not only see themselves as inherently superior to the Undesired,  but as inevitable products of the Great Apotheosis. 

Everyone else is not only genetically-inferior but morally-inferior.

Which is why this story is so perfect; a homeless man--in reality, a sixteen year-old boy-- was given a sandwich by a young Starbucks customer over the expressed wishes of a Starbucks employee--sorry, a Starbucks partner-- who told the naive young girl that she'd be better off to let the boy starve to death in the cold.

Because Nature.

Doing so openly may be against corporate policy, but it's entirely consistent with Starbucks messaging. You're smothered in that messaging every time you walk into one of their stores. Yeah, you've felt it.

Back to Neonomicon....

Oh yeah, spoiler alert.

The end of the miniseries has the female FBI agent freed from the cult, their pet Fish-Man killed by SWAT like a docile Golden Retriever.  The agent then goes to visit a former FBI agent-turned-serial killer (we meet him in the first installment of Moore's Lovecraft trilogy, The Courtyard) in prison and the two begin communing in Lovecraftian argle-bargle. 

It's here we discover the woman has been impregnated by the Fish-Man and is destined to be the Mitochondrial Eve of the new race of Mer-Overlords. 

We then learn that the Old Ones and the Deep Ones or whoever are not ancient beings but future beings. Future fish-beings.

Which brings us back to the saddle of my Transgenics hobby-horse...

It's on. 

I mean, after what--70 years or so of practice?-- the test-tubes are ready. CRISPR GMOS are coming very soon to your grocery shelves and human trials are now out in the open. Get ready for all kinds of miracle cure CRISPR stories on the front pages and the transgenic chimera horror stories in the back.

And of course there's the AI-CRISPR convergence because why not? Hitch all the horses to the buggy. We ride until dawn.

And just in case you think I'm talking total nonsense here, there's this.

Now, if you still think that the big CRISPR-Transgenic campaign is somehow unconnected or coincidental to the Mermaid Apocalypse, then I very humbly apologize. For I have utterly failed you.

If you think stuff like this is a distraction from our real problems, let me ask you this: what if what you think are our real problems are a distraction from stuff like this? Think about it. I have.

But here's the deal: I wasn't really planning on dedicating an entire post to the Mermaid Apocalypse, but that story up there put the final piece in place. Why?

Because anyone familiar with how these things work can immediately translate that Bullshitese headline to plain American. 

What it really says is "Most People Are Already Unwanted for CRISPR." Meaning they have no intention of bestowing these still-dubious blessings onto the masses but only to the Smart-Citizens of the New Atlantis. 

Or perhaps only to the Mer-People, who shall be intrepid and cruel. 

* Mermaid Olympic events include:  the abduction-squad obstacle course, the post-bonegraft morphine-lever thumb press, the 400-hour agonizing writhe, the post-CRISPR therapy projectile-vomit dash and the "please, please, please, just let me fucking die" screech. Contestants from every country in the world are set to compete.