27 November 2007

Globalization and You

If government serves the corporations, doesn't it seem cheaper to standardize labor law globally? If labor law is homogenized, and corporations seek only to maximize profit, doesn't that mean that living wages, environmental protection, healthcare will be devalued to the level of the lowest legal standard?
Yes!
Think homogenaety of law and standard of living.
NAFTA = Continental
FTAA = Hemispheric
WTO = Global
What is the lowest minimum wage in the world?

Comparison

I've thought about this myself quite a few times in the last year, heres an interesting BBC radio Documentary called:
Seeing Iraq, Thinking Vietnam
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/documentary_archive/7092879.stm
Just click on the title to listen or download.

26 November 2007

Startling Realization

My paper is basically done. I estimate roughly 15 hours of typing, not including reading the source material. Just a little editing tomorrow before class, and I'm free as a fart in a hurricane.
Jolly Roger provides the liquid celebration this evening, a little splurge in the face of frighteningly restrictive capitalist social control. The terror and helplessness increase as we study the capitalist system. Todays morsel of depression:

Opportunity Cost - Loss of potential profit through wasted commodity.
Friendship is an opportunity cost because the reciprocal emotional nurturing given when friends spend time together represents potential labor time lost. An hour of tea and conversation represents X-dollars not earned.
Romantic sex (intercourse based on affection) is an opportunity cost because it represents a loss of potential profit, you could have charged, but didn't = Loss of potential profit.
That is how capitalism works.
Final example;
During the WTO protests in Seattle in 1999, civil liberties, that is, the Constitution, were temporarily suspended within a portion of Seattle. What prompted this suspension? Property damage to corporate assets, Nike Town, Banana Republic storefronts etc. When the property damage exceeded the previously declared level of $2,500,000, civil liberties were suspended. The population of the US is 250,000,000.
$2,500,000 divided by 250,000,000 is $0.01
Under corporate government in the US, civil liberties are worth one tenth of one cent.

25 November 2007

Perpetual Textualization of Thought

I gave myself a good 8+ hours of sleep last night in anticipation of todays keyboard session. I'll leave analysis of payoff to third parties but overall, the writing was more or less a success.
Roughly seven plus hours in front of the keyboard yielded a more or less complete paper which I can edit and polish over the next two days with the help of several friends. I managed to listen to the first 6 of the 7 disc Sonny Rollins Prestige box set while doing it. I've found that music with lyrics distracts my brain. Hmmm funny about language. Took a few breaks to finish up a review of an Israeli film, Private Maneuvers which featured this relaxing vision of patriarchal sexual objectification...
The review is at: http://www.genrebusters.com/film/review_garbage_privatemaneuvers.htm
The surprise epiphany of the day was the understanding of the system of Hyperindustrialism which is actually a somewhat theoretical cultural system that we haven't discussed much in class. We'll see if my analysis is correct(according to Mohammed) when I get my paper back. Whew, that was bothering me. I'm not sure if four Happy Hour rounds at Hattie's Hat can be blamed for this momentary flash of smarts, or if it was the fact that I ate virtually nothing all day.
Horay for Hyperindustrialism, my previous labor secured a full day of key punching brain leakage and distilled spirits.

Surf II

After work I drank a few and then came home to work on the paper. Liquor is fuel for thought regardless of academic importance. Irrational thought pushes the envelope, rational thought sharpens it's edges.
A little bit of Big Lebowski, then a trip to the Grand Illusion to see Surf II an awesome piece of awesome, can you relate?
Unrelated, Best line of the night;
"I'm glad you speak poop, because I do not." - Seth Goodkind.
Happy birthday buddy.

23 November 2007

I Love it When Big Stuff Gets Broke



This Canadian cruise ship struck an iceberg off the coast of Antarctica today and sank 20 hours later. I love it when human decadence is squished by nature. Hahahahahahahahahahahaha! Stupid skin-bags!

22 November 2007

Nuestra Cultura!

For almost three years I dated a woman who hated mariachi music. OK, it came out late in the relationship that mariachi was part of our culture. Really I felt like she denied it, and I embraced it. I fucking love mariachi, Mexican, damn, I know nothing about this music style. I have a virulent violent pride in it, but I have no idea what it is.
She was beautiful, she was destructive.
Ando muy borracho, pero nada mas es por tu culpa mujer!
Basta!

My mind has beed running atround without my approval lately. It's time to bring it into line. I'm going to bed, it's not yet 9pm.
See you tomorrow, 8 hours equals 5am, lets shoot for 7.

Camoflaged Intent ver.2.0

In modern times there appears to be a direct correlation between a society engaged in warfare and the fashion of camoflage patterns in civilian dress. At present, an example of this can be found in the clothing sections of Wal, or K-Marts, Fred Meyer, etc. Brown, beige, forest, grey, olive, khaki etc. ad nauseum.
In order to understand why this occurs, one would have to look at the rise of clothing fashion over function in modern culture, or the point when it became caloricaly and economicaly viable for homo sapiens to manufacture clothing above and beyond what was required for everyday performance. The rise of skill specialization?

Next one would have to look at the history of warfare in state societies. Why state societies? State societies are where organized armies begin to appear. Initially I would imagine, while still a member of the armed group, the individual soldier provided for their own equipment and attire. Eventually though, with the development of complex stratified political societies, the state provides for the equippage of its organized and stratified army. Finally, as textile production and distribution becomes mechanized it becomes institutionally universal. An excellent example of this is the Union Army of the American Civil War. During the beginning of the war state and local militia units were required to provide for their own equipment and uniforms, which naturally reflected a great diversity in design and color. By the end of the war however Union uniforms were almost universally blue with the exception of a few specialized units like snipers. The same cannot be said for the Confederacy which despite multiple attempts never achieved universality of uniforms, and as war fortunes and political coherence disintegrated over the course of the war, the diversity in clothing remained high, possibly even increasing.
But it still takes some time to develop the concept of camoflage. Obviosly primitive, or natural camouflage was used by hunters to conceal themselves from game and this concept naturally carried over into tribal warfare in some cases. As an organized military practice it must have developed within cultures of low population and low birth rates and high infant mortality. The fewer warriors a society has, the fewer it can afford to lose, and therefore it becomes vital to use the tactical advantage given by concealment.
However, as the stratification of some societies developed, and the specialization of labor created surpluses of food and other commodities like metal and textile crafts, it allowed for the creation of classes of non-producers like professional warriors. If the warrior, or soldier class is not providing for it’s own equipment, the state must provide it. Since the state (aristocracy, ruling class, government) are themselves non-producers, they do this using wealth generated by the producers and collected on the promise of stability and safety within state borders. The development of massive land armies that coincided with the rise of state societies and skill specialization used clan or soveriegn affiliation as a marker of aleigance on military equipment. (colors/patterns/tartan, flags, heraldry) The intensive agricultural production and sedentary lifestyle of these cultures necessitated a tremendous amount of labor to maintain the social order and provide nourishment for the system. This reciprocally required vast armies with which to protect, and expand the empire. During this period (and locality) warfare consisted of a confrontation groups of massed infantry and cavalry (or ships (is the submarine the first naval camouflage?)) clashing on open fields. Within this system, the loss of several hundred soldiers, while regrettable, was not devastating, and concealment or camouflage was not deemed necessary. In fact it was not even considered until state societies began the spread of colonialism in the new world where they encountered the tribal warfare techniques of the Native Americans (how do the Mesoamericans wage war?) (Africa is a problem). At this point, in the state societies concealment and surprise attack was considered cowardly and ungentlemanly.
Again, the process has to begin with the individual equipping himself with camoflage from the environment while in the field. Many generations later specialized units began to equip themselves with camoflage as a badge of distinction. (Elite units of the Wehrmacht – SS, snipers, Rangers, Scouts, Pathfinders, reconnaissance) (guerilla warfare?)
Somewhere in the the last two steps, camoflage pattern gets introduced as a civilian fashion. It wasn't until Vietnam that this phenomenon took on mass apeal however. Is this a correlation with the birth of mass visual advertising via TV? Vietnam was the first really outspoken war, that is, there was a tremendous amount of public discourse surrounding the war experience both in a collective and an individual sense.
Thus following the zeitgeist, it became hip for the ex-soldier to become just another victim of the system, and therefore cool, one of us.
But, has this had a more sinister effect?
Has pseudo military fashion clothing adevertising and manufacture become an industrial cultural reinforcement of warfare?
How does this relate to the rise of Black militancy in the 60’s and the subsequent rise of violent black street gangs and Hip-Hop culture?
Is wearing camoflage or military style clothing equvalent to advertising for war? Does camouflage in fashion contribute to, or perpetuate cultural acceptance and prolongation of warfare?

(Side question, how does one advertise for peace?)
Possible resources:
A Distant Mirror
Disruptive Pattern Material:
Brassey’s American Civil War Uniforms
Guns, Germs and Steel

Camoflaged Intent

There is an obvious modern correlation between a society engaged in massive warfare and the fashion of camoflage patterns in civilian dress. Just look in the clothing section of Wal, or K-Mart, Fred Meyers, etc. Brown, beige, forest, grey, olive, khaki etc. ad nauseum.
Why does this occur, one would have to look at the rise of clothing fashion over function in modern culture, or the point when it became caloricaly and economicaly viable for homo sapiens to manufacture clothing above and beyond what was required for everyday performance. The rise of skill specialization?
Next one would have to look at the history of warfare in state societies. Why state societies? State societies is where organized state armies begin to appear. Initially I would immagine, while still a member of the group, the individual soldier provided for their own equipment and attire. Eventually though with the development of complex sstratified and skill specialized societies, the state provides for the equippage of its army. But it still takes some time to develop the concept of camoflage. Again, the process has to begin with the individual equipping himself with camoflage from the environment, until generations later specialized units equip themselves with camoflage as a badge of distinction. Finally it becomes institutionally universal.
Somewhere in the the last two steps, camoflage pattern gets introduced as a civilian fashion. It wasn't until Vietnam that this phenomenon took on mass apeal however. Is this a correlation with the birth of mass visual advertising via TV? Vietnam was the first really outspoken war, that is, there was a tremendous amount of public discourse surrounding the war experience both in a collective and an individual sense.
Thus following the zeitgeist, it became hip for the ex-soldier to become just another victim of the system, and therefore cool, one of us.
But, has this had a more sinister effect?
Has pseudo military fashion clothing adevertising and manufacture become an industrial cultural reinforcement of warfare?

In short: Is wearing camoflage or military style clothing equvalent to advertising for war?

(Side question, how does one advertise for peace?)

21 November 2007

Regression to Racism

I'd like to know what the statistics on the resurgence in popularity of "black" sitcoms of the 70's and 80's. Clearly part of it is their availability on DVD, but that's part of my question, who's buying those DVD's and why? It's probably a majority of white people because of the racist economics of the US, but that isn't what I want to know.
Why are people buying these DVD's?
1.Because the shows were good/funny
2.Nostalgia
3.Black people were less threatening when they were funny stereotypes, and today's television shows portray African Americans in far less benign stereotypes.

(Faults in my logic may include, but are not limited to the following: 1)I never watched any of the shows in question. 2)I haven't verified that the shows I'm thinking of are available on DVD. 3)I don't watch current television programming)

The evolution of race labeling of persons of african descent in the US:
African
Slave
Colored
Negro
Black
African American

20 November 2007

Edits and Present Panic

Reading a lot in the past couple of days, that ol bus trip to school really works a number on the pages. No complaints mind you. Chomsky really lets you have it. After class today I exercised to Hapkido (aka Lady Kung Fu) an awesome movie, then Dan and I watched The Lady is The Boss, another awesome lady-fu movie.
Tomorrow is work.
I have my final anthropology paper due on Tuesday, that means I better get cracking tomorrow. Get cracking. Cracking!
Shit, I thought I had more time, but wait, somehow this is going to be, fun? wait, as soon as I get home from class on Tuesday I have to take a 2.5 hour Geography exam? Wow, sounds more like Abuseday.
I added more to the piece from the last post, but then I read some interesting stuff in Chomsky today re. Vietnam, and Judt's Postwar also re. 'Nam. So theres more work to be done there too. Yippee. I love this shit.
Brutal half/lockjaw syndrome continues.

18 November 2007

Romanticized Simplification (edited)



If it was 1958 I would probably be able to become career military, but not in '68, or at any point later really. Is that because the end of military carrers usually end during or after a war, not because of death, but because once you've seen the elephant, and have your pension, you don't need to see that shit again? No, I think it has to do with the romance of America, the steadfast-moral beacon romantic ideal.

I believe that Vietnam was the confrontation between America's idealized delusion of itself, and the reality.

Militarily this is because it truly was the US's first non-linear war in that there was no territory to physically "control" in any sense. There was, in an immediate sense, nothing to show for our expenditure. Yet at the beginning there was, at the public level, a great deal of support for the war as it escalated. This of course declined after '67, but the public popularity of the war as ever declined as the casualties and cost began to mount, and the great evil that personified WWII and Koreas war efforts never perceptibly (despite bureaucratic effort) materialized. It was at this moment by no coincidence that the youth movement of the 60’s emerged. The parents of these kids were the ones who went through WWII with the sense of an emerging global nation, and only just passed the Korean test to back up that newborn claim. The ideals taught them by their parents suddenly held no more water, where was the moral right in this situation?

By the end of the fifties, the fragile remains of the Korean quasi-victory were still cleanly balanced. Public memory of “the last fun war” (ironically also known as “The Forgotten War” had faded with McCarthy and the threat of swarming Soviet hordes, and with the idea of a missile gap. War had changed from a truly local (infantry) affair, of boys killing boys, to a global, long distance affair, and there was a tangible difference.

If there is a missile gap, if we are so technologically and morally superior to “them”, what are we doing there, why are we fighting a simple primitive agrarian society?

And there the romance broke. That very youth movement was a simbiote of Vietnam. If Vietnam had not happened, the youth of the 60’s would have had nothing to rebel against. Their defiance would have been as benign as fashion.

Does this mean that war deeply alters our cultural self-understanding, no warfare is a reflection of our cultural imperative. I won’t make the case that Vietnam was right, I don’t think it was. Nor do I think it was wrong, at least not beyond the point of killing other people is wrong. But was it natural? Yes, it was the philosophical endpoint of American moral superiority. America’s status as a global leader no longer stood on the dual pillars of moral and economic might, and it wasn’t until the collapse of the Soviet Union ten years later that the economic claim was borne out.
(edited 11-18)

17 November 2007

Eaten Alive


I think I really like this movie.

16 November 2007

Gross Lamprey vol. 3


Now it's just up to Phill to do the type and title design.

Creature & Girl

15 November 2007

Gross Lamprey vol. 2


A better 10x sized lamprey for Phill's and my Lamprey horror movie poster. I have to go to bed, I have a lot to do tomorrow.

13 November 2007

Somehow This Isn't Helping



We've started covering political economy, political organization and power in Anthropology. Jeeeeeze,it's more than a little overwhelming and depressing. The power structure of an agrarian state compared to a nation state (the differences are subtle but crucial)is frightening, and I feel completely helpless. It doesn't help that at the moment I'm reading Chomsky's Failed States, which details the United States complete and utter disregard, and in fact blatant agressive "sabre rattling" disregard for international law sovereignty and rights (since at least the 20's).

It appears that I am increasing my course load next quarter to 3 classeswith something called Coordinated Studies, the program this year is called, Art and Anarchy, and it examines the "aesthetic and political responses to emerging state societies." It sounds cool, and I can do it, but it'll be time consuming.

Drew this sexy lamprey. Actually, lampreys are kindof gross, I might not be able to touch one.

11 November 2007

Even More What's Next?


Well, okay, I only watched Eaten Alive, which was awesomer than I had hoped, and better than I remembered. Is it possible that I was less in touch than I am now? But The Corpse Grinders is coming soon, it's been longer since I watched that, in fact this whole week is a series of retro-viewings, what with Scalps, Eaten Alive, and Corpse Ginders to come...
I only needed to watch the one film, during which I finally managed to produce a piece of Accidental Gun Death art I've had stewing in my brain for over a year. Yeah, I like it, it's gross. Isn't that the point?
I better go, I gotta try and start a review of Scalps.
My review of The Dark appears on www.genrebusters.com today.

What's Next?

Alright, the productive part of the day is finished, and so I am retiring to the screening room for the evening. I've gotten all my homework reading done, cut down the postcard sheets, test printed one, started designing the reverse, exercised, did the rule sheet for tomorrows KFGH, as well as renting one of the movies since the one I ordered is a no-show, bought plane tickets for my Jan. trip, edited and sent my film review, cooked lunch and dinner, and done the dishes.
I'm ready to drink some wine, eat a vegan ginger snap or two and watch Eaten Alive and maybe The Corpse Grinders before writing a review of Scalps, and then sleeping.
Whew.

I Can Try

If I wanted to I could find faults in this day.
But, I didn't get tortured or evicted or fired, so things aren't a diaster.
I made about 80 cookies at work, just to be nice, and because well, it's confusing.
Why is this jerk guy suddenly making us abunch of cookies?
To confuse you.

I made a delicious curried salmon rice salad, drank a bunch of wine, and gave a beautiful woman a foot massage.

My friend told me yesterday something along the lines of,
"You are grounded and self-aware. You know your needs, and weaknesses, and are able to act with rationality." He cited my relationship with this beautiful woman as evidence.

I don't belive him really. He was drunk, I was flattered, and it all sounded very nice. It's never as easy as it looks my friend.

10 November 2007

Scalps

It was nearly 10 years hence, but I finally got a re-watch of Scalps in. Fre Olen Ray, thank you. I think Iblogged about this movie a while back, on a VHS double bill with something else, it was way worse back then. I want it.

09 November 2007

Machination

There was so much buildup to this bullshit it had to end up stupid. I should have stayed at work late and helped out. I will tomorrow. Fuck work. I'm sending a resume to Something Wierd.
Got my financial aid reinstated, and thus made a tattoo appointment. Thank you state.
I'm momentarily torn/confused. There is much beyond the flutter of brain shadow which clouds me right now.
I used to walk home from school when I was 15, because I was in after school suspension. I hated school, everyone there was stupid, the teachers, the students. So I fought, and I was punished. I know what it means to not be wanted by anyone. Your peers, your teachers, your parents.
What else is punishment besides guilt-force to be as you are told, not as you are.
What else is life, police, jobs, politics, law.
Subjugation of the self.

Calmation

I was doing fuckin good, on my way to school, I ended up being late, visit to Finacial Aid office postponed till after class. Class takes too long, I have to listen to Mohammad (teacher) read a story which continues over 7 minutes past class. I wanted to stay! Not today, ran to FA and was told to call tomorrow. Late to work, surprise parties. I hate job. Bitterness. Job not so bad. Drink wine after work, moderately improved.

Frankly, I am abrasive, angry and confrontational to be around. Why? I don't fuggin' know, I'm not a shrink, and I'm not sure I believe those people anyway. I think people are stupid, and I hate having to deal with it. I too am stupid, but no-one is ever willing to call me on it. (probably because they are scared)

1.)This is part of why I am reluctant to date women seriously, they're bound to pick up on the up-tight asshole factor sooner or later and bail. Why get involved? So I push off, and talk about business, etc., denial.

2.) I'm not sure I have the capacity to understand love. Even if it doesn't exist, I feel too shalow and vain to appreciate a woman for her actual "self" and not her junk. Maybe if she has too much self I I run away.
There's lots more. Fuck, this is hard.

My final (and good) review of Winter Soldier appears here, as does my review of Super Inframan, a film starring China's first superhero. Wow!
http://www.genrebusters.com/
Leave some feedback here, or there, we're always curious what our readers think.

06 November 2007

I Falter

I try and say something and I come acrosss as agressive and preclusive. What I fail to realize is that everyone else can't see things from inside here. I'm isolated, uniquely aware. (in form if not substance) It requires finesse to translate interpersonally.
I hurt my friends, I drive potential friends away, and, end result, I smile at you from aross the table. End of story, better for others, safer for me and my damaged, "victim" persona.
What does victimisation mean, what is a victim? I definitely see my status therin as "manufactured".My membership requires my own acknowledgement. That seems self defeating.
Nope, not valid.
I regret nothing though, decline guilt for personailty.
I am asshole, see me ass-hole.
Fuck, at this juncture I have nothing to contribute.

05 November 2007

You're Free Now, Bye.

My linguistic approach to interpersonal problem solving appears to be the microcosmic verbal equivalent of bridge burning.
I love deep sleeps that merge with drunken moments of lucidity. I hate the smell of freshly dug soil when it's cold.
Accomplishments, but little to show for it yet.
Soon.

Winter Soldier


This was a pretty damn good documentary, actually, it wasn't a documentary in my definition. It was very subjective, that is made basically by the people whom it was about. Nevertheless, it made me think a bit. I actually wrote a review of it in one sitting. Kindof makes me want to go back and watch some more 'Nam docs. I will still never fully believe the comparisons between Vietnam and Iraq, they're too convinient, but I'll admit that I really can't ever know. The preliminary unedited text of the review:


Winter Soldier
1971
Editors – Winterfilm Collective

Winter Soldier is a documentary of sorts that came to light in recent history because of the ill-fated presidential candidacy of John Kerry, a Vietnam veteran, and at the time member of Vietnam Veterans Against The War who testified at the Winter Soldier Conference.
At the time of the 2004 Election, I had been a student of the Vietnam war for about 6 years, and had read a great deal of eyewitness, journalistic and political accounts of the war, its causes, it’s execution, and it’s aftermath, so this piece of history caught my eye. Three years later I’m watching it.
Winter Soldier is a little bit different than all of that literature and academic discourse on Vietnam. Even if some of it was decidedly unacademic. Why did it take a presidential race to resurrect the spectre of this film, and why is it so important to such a miniscule group of people?
Winter soldier is first of all, a documentary. But it’s not an objective take, it’s very much a subjective one, having been made as a part of the VVAW anti-war movement. At first this seems to color the proceedings with a victim mentality, but the repeated, deadpan sincerity is finally, just a little unsettling. Never that much, it’s too believable to be really unsettling, it all seems too possible.
Billed as a war crimes conference, for about an hour and a half, Winter Soldier proceeds with the simple continuous testimony of Vietnam veterans speaking about the brutality and inhumanity that they witnessed and committed in Vietnam.
For a contemporary student of the war itself, many of these stories are surprisingly, not unfamiliar, if unique in the details, but what I had to remind myself is that these confessions were not made 30 years later on the printed page with the promise of a royalty check on the far end. These men are still seeing these things in full color in their heads and can still feel the pull of the flesh.
Two thirds of the way through this film is a segment that feels out of place. A black veteran rants at a white veteran about racism, and about the complete and total white/black detach, and lack of understanding. At first the black guy seems a little cartoony and out there, but soon, it’s heavy, and the white guy stands there at the end with nothing to say, floored and nodding his head.
You’ll never get it man, you-will-never-get-it. No matter how much you think you’re staring right at it, you will never see the whole picture. For that reason, this film will never be “gotten”, it can’t be, not by anyone who is not on screen. It’s like a movie in a foreign language, without subtitles. I can’t say I know anything about the Vietnam War anymore, and I never will.

04 November 2007

Why Do People Like Obama So Much?

I think it's because of his resemblance to Nelson Mandella. Does that make me a racist? Obamas ears stick out more and he's younger, but look at their eyes, they look the same. That dude will never become president, he has less chance than Hillary. Sorry no black people or women allowed, you're too much not like us. We will never relinquish our grip.

02 November 2007

Weight

I went to work. I was a monster, I made dirty faces at people. I was darkness, and then I left.

This morning. Now I'm going to work.

Slowing Down on the Autobahn


Yeah, I got up pretty early this morning and worked on the Super Inframan poster all morning till I left for class and dropped off Barbarians posters on the way.

I decided that investing even 200 bucks in a new tattoo right now, considering a NM trip next monthish, and Mexico in June, is economically unviable. Damn I wanted that ink. I'll have to wait until January I guess. Probably better that way anyway.

I suspected for a while that I wasn't eating enough protien, and my leathargy and lousy sleep seem to be confirming this. I've just been not eating well lately anyway, and I need to be more careful.

In any case, this doesn't account for my disinterest in people and talking to/dealing with them lately. I just don't feel like answering the phone, or hearing what they have to talk about, or explaining myself, or thinking about them, or fantasizing about them, or looking at them. Dealing with people means dealing with variables, and I was always bad at those.