Monday, October 29, 2018

Calling Up the Devil and Asking Him to Behave

Well, it's been quite a week. Seems like I've been saying that a lot lately. But despite the atrocity and upheaval, it's also been an elucidating week, in that some persistent delusions have been shattered.

One of those delusions is that you can summon demons and expect them to do your bidding.  

Being kind of old and out of touch, I do have to admit that I thought the "punch a Nazi" meme was spectacularly bad advice. I always saw this particular hashtag as the equivalent of advising someone to punch a hornet's nest. Or to stick their head in a tiger cage. 

Of course, this is because I didn't understand it didn't really have anything to do with punching actual Nazis, it actually meant "threaten or intimidate anyone whose politics you disagree with. Or maybe just anyone you don't like."

You see, painful experience taught me that the best way to deal with an actual Nazi would be to back away slowly and don't make any sudden moves, unless A., said Nazi was dramatically outnumbered and B., you planned on either killing or crippling said Nazi, or similarly preventing them from coming after you later. I don't know, maybe they make Nazis differently these days. 

I've already told you one encounter I had with some real Nazis but I didn't tell you about the time I got my ass kicked by one. It was at the infamous Christmas hardcore matinee at the Paradise in 1984. It wasn't even a fight-- it was me getting wailed a dozen times or so in the space of a few seconds and getting the fuck out of Dodge. Or out of the pit, at least.  

What's more, I was told the kid was still looking for me even after he kicked my ass. I had to ask some Losiada skins I'd only just met (they'd come to Boston for the show) to help mediate. Had I not done so, he'd probably have gathered up a few fellow stormtroopers and done me for real after the show. I shudder to think.

punnish musical interlude

Anyway, after a couple years of Nazi-punching Tweets and street punchups between Antifa and the Proud Boys, a real-life Nazi comes out of the woodwork and does what real Nazis often do, and that's commit a horrific act of senseless violence.

And then, according to some observers, a purported real-life Nazi gets elected as President in Latin America's largest country by a significant margin and promises to bring back the good old days. Meaning bring back the days when Brazil was ruled over by a military junta.

The Twitter bluechecks seemed particularly bewildered by this result because their cushy upbringings have kept them gleefully insulated from reality. As well as from history.

You see, their multicultural utopias have a fairly reliable habit of electing strongmen. Look it up if you don't believe me. They also have a reliable habit of breeding war, as we saw in Beirut and the Balkans not so long ago now. 

Oddly enough, I'm not seeing #PunchANazi trending so much now, when you think Nazi-punchers would be out there manning the stanchions. It looks to me like there's quite a few Nazis that might need punching in Brazil (not to mention the Ukraine, of course). I hear airfare is quite reasonable these days.

Oh, well. Maybe next time.

Anyway, I later found out that the Nazi that punched me a dozen or so times in the head and face was a glue-addicted homeless kid who came from a horrifically-abusive family. And reading about this Nazi in Pittsburgh, I see that he fits the classic serial-spree killer template: "neighbors said he was quiet, kept to himself." 

And as the scales continue to fall away from my eyes, I see both of them as candidates ripe for demonic possession.

As I said in my previous post, I think there's a lot of that going around these days. The demon I'm thinking about isn't Asmodeus or Abbadon or even Pazuzu, it's a demonic zeitgeist. It's a mindless, formless, nameless demon that feeds on fear and other negative emotions summoned by social media.

In fact, I recently read a quote that kind of puts it all into context. Someone said, "I'm convinced the Devil lives in our phones."

I'm sorry, what's that you say? Who said this? Alex Jones? Pat Roberson? David Icke? Some Fundamentalist nutter on YouTube?

Hmm, good question. Let me look it up again...

Wait, searching. OK, here we go- it was in The New York Times. Let's see who said this again...

Oh. Someone who works for the Zuckster. Huh.

So Gab got shut down after the atrocity in Pittsburgh. I've never been on there but from what I understand it's a pretty grim place. But at the risk of committing a "whataboutism" the same can be said for most leftist sites as well. I'm constantly putting bluechecks on mute on Twitter because I can't deal with the murderous rage and hate from them either.

Or the self-delusion, for that matter.

Because why not, right?

The problem is twofold-- there's the violent nature of our species. There is the opportunities for riches and power that large-scale conflict brings. And, of course, there's the demonic zeitgeist, which is being fed not only by social media but the increasingly-darkening cast of pop culture. (Yes, I fully intend to cover the new Sabrina-- I've had a post in the queue for months now).

In a weird way, what's going on now--especially in Brazil-- reminds me of a large-scale, slow-motion replay of a massacre that took place in November of 1979 when the Maoist Communist Workers Party held a "Death to the Klan" rally in Greensboro, NC. 

I don't know exactly what the Maoists were expecting but what they got was carloads of heavily-armed Kluxers and Nazis showing up thirsty for blood. So when the CWP attacked the Klan's cars with clubs and baseball bats, the racist goons got out and started gunning the CWP down. Miraculously, only five people were actually killed.

But this is the reality of political violence and civil war. It's not about hashmark campaigns and doxxing. It's not about making crucial speeches and heroic stands. It's not even about pantomime punch-ups in Portland. It's about heads being bashed in and blown off. It's a bunch of old folks getting mowed down at their shul by some psychotic anti-Semite. It needs to be avoided at any and all costs. 

Sadly, I just don't know if Brazil will be able to dodge that particular bullet.

Now, I certainly don't want to equate Greensboro with what we saw at the Tree of Life. Greensboro was two armed gangs of kill-crazy thugs throwing down. Pittsburgh was just senseless slaughter. Gunning down a bunch of senior citizens at prayer is the apogee of evil and cowardice, as far as I'm concerned.

You might even say it was demonic. I know I would. 

But we're seeing a lot of violent and superheated rhetoric every minute of every day on social media and despite their shrill cries of protestation, no small amount of it is coming from the Left. Motes and planks and all that.

I mean, I don't know whose idea #PunchANazi was, but I certainly wouldn't be surprised if it were originally created by a Nazi troll or agent provocateur looking to rile up the troops. 
Like I said, it's pretty much the same as "#PokeAtAHornetNest" or "#StickYourDickInALightSocket."

I mean, say your name was Johnny Jones and you kept seeing a hashtag that said "#PunchJohnnyJones." You'd get a little irritable after a while, no? Just sayin'.

And to be honest, I can't help but wonder if the original notion of shutting down sites like Gab-- as toxic and ugly as they may be-- might not have come from the same brainstorming session. It's a tough call. Echo chambers like that can really whip someone into a froth of hate or give them the chance to vent off steam.

Either way, this Bowers guy looked like a timebomb that was going to go off eventually. It was just a matter of time.

I'm not going to talk about the so-called "MAGABomber" since I'm trying not to spend too much time worrying about total foolishness. And I still haven't heard an explanation as to how this guy --who was apparently living in his van in Miami-- could run around the New York metropolitan area hand-delivering these parcels to ex-Presidents and billionaires. Maybe he mastered the occult art of bilocation.

Nor have I heard any explanation as to how parcels with insufficient postage could travel hither and you without postmarks, cancellations or digital sorting codes. How many sorting stations are between Miami and Manhattan? I'd say a few. And with automation these days an unscanned parcel would never have made it north at all. 

I guess all those steroids gave the guy mesmeric super-powers since I've never been able to send a parcel over 13 ounces with stamps. Certainly not since 9/11. But this former male stripper was a super-genius enough to send mailbombs in cheap padded envelopes without any of them exploding so maybe he's some kind of remote influencer.

Just one of those unexplainable mysteries, I guess.

But either way, the "MAGABomber" and the mass-murdering Nazi in Pittsburgh show how an individual bent on summoning Hell to Earth can entire communities to a halt. We've seen this quite a bit recently, of course, all too many times in fact. The European example proves that banning firearms only forces these individuals to resort to other means.

Finally, I couldn't help but laugh at this in light of last week's post. As I said, I think it's the height of folly to assume anyone at Trump's level doesn't have a few tricks up his own sleeve, so to speak. But I almost wonder if this wasn't more than just a joke on his part. That maybe he was sending a signal here. 

People continue to assume that this Administration is just some gameshow host and his bunch of flunkies. If you're not already, I recommend you read VISUP and promptly disabuse yourself of those notions. 

You may or may not have noticed but this guy keeps "winning!" and his opponents keep losing. For the most part, at least. You'd think a change in tactics might be called for but I'm not seeing any of that on the horizon. Kind of makes you wonder.

In the meantime, I'm in the mood for some Sun Tzu. How about all y'all? Want to read a couple passages together? Let's do it.
Thus one who is skillful at keeping the enemy on the move maintains deceitful appearances, according to which the enemy will act. He sacrifices something, that the enemy may snatch at it. 
Simulated disorder postulates perfect discipline, simulated fear postulates courage; simulated weakness postulates strength.
Nifty, eh?


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