Wayne Michael Reich

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Wayne Michael Reich
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Author: Darkreich

Death Takes a Holman-day. (Death and the Craven)

I am not afraid of death threats, but I am appalled that so many people are capable of so much wrong spelling and fractured grammar!”- Miriam

Hello, Bitchiteers!

Today’s blogvella could be best defined by my long-held conviction, that threats are the sanctuary of the inarticulate, the inane, and the truly incompetent. Regardless of whatever flaw of character I decide to choose, they would all fill the need to serve as a launch pad for this, my newest slice of Snark. I’ve often joked that I have always judged my success by the enemies I’ve acquired, while also simultaneously noting with dire seriousness, that I also require a far better class of enemy.

Although to be quite honest, I would happily settle for one that couldn’t be as easily distracted by a box of bubble wrap or a Fleshlight with a set of fresh batteries, as most seem to be. But I’m also fond of this inherent weakness to be found in my detractors, for as Napoleon Bonaparte once stated; “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” And that, my loyal readers, is some hard-won and sage advice, no matter how you choose to spread it on your croissant.

And when it comes to the subject of what goes atop my pretentious bread, it’s a pretty simple combination of sugared venom, cynicism, and curmudgeonly guidance. It’s an acidic formula I’ve perfected over the last 52 years of walking upon this f**ked up Earth, and while it works perfectly fine for me, I will also openly acknowledge that it (and I) are ofttimes, not always everyone’s ideal cup of tea. What can I say? Some people are all about the coffee, and there’s nothing that I can do about that, not that I’d bother to try. See, without dissenting opinions, the world itself would be a rather boring place, and I’ve always felt that in order to achieve any kind of progress, all the cards as they were, need to be dealt out on the proverbial table.

This opinion of mine brings to mind the late comedian Richard Jeni, who had a joke about how your first date with a potential life-partner should take place not at a dinner table, but at a card table, where each of you would present your emotional issues, which had been conveniently printed up on cards, so that you could then be completely honest with each other:

Bob: “Hi, I’m Bob- I’m a Scorpio.”
Sally: ”Hi. I’m Sally. I’m a Psycho.”

Bob: “My father locked me in the closet when I was five years old.”
Sally: “My father came out of the closet when I was seven years old.”

Bob: “I’m self-centered and obsessed with my appearance.”
Sally: “I’m from Los Angeles, also.”

Just imagine how much smoother the world would run if we always knew who we were really dealing with, whether that knowledge was desired or disdained. I for one, would have made far better selections if I had been privy to the true intent of certain people, let me tell you. For instance, that whole three-and-a-half-year period where I was once engaged to a woman who was so well known for her infidelity, that I should have had one of those “take-a-number “dispensers installed outside of our bedroom.

I’m not going to lie here- when the woman you thought you loved comes home with enough strange DNA on her lips to warrant an episode of Cold Case Files, that’s when the subscription cost of precognitive vison definitively pays for itself. On the upside however, it did reinforce the concept expressed by poet Maya Angelou: “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”, which, once again, is good advice, no matter how you choose to microwave your chimichanga. Taking it one step further, lauded American journalist and cultural critic Henry Louis Mencken opined that “Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another.”, which led to my once displaying a certain returned engagement ring in a shadowbox with a plaque echoing this point of emotive discord.

But in hindsight, should I really have taken my cues regarding my personal healing process from a guy who looked like this?

Unquestionably, the man was a brilliant satirist, essayist, and academic, but as my GF noted, just on his looks alone, that if he offered you an unexpected cocktail, you’d most likely dump it out into a houseplant when he wasn’t looking, so maybe his view of inter-personal observations on the fairer sex should be taken with a grain of salt or two. In fact, when I showed her this photo, her visceral reaction was to say “Yeesh… that’s unfortunate.” Ouch.

Granted, this photo answers the question as to what the Pillsbury Doughboy might look like if he had decided to go work for Al Capone, instead of fostering his passion for baked goods, but I digress. The point that I’m trying to make here is that we never really know what’s in the heart of certain people, due to the variance of their personal experiences.

But when it comes to those on the alt-right side of things, what’s in their hearts isn’t that hard to decipher, thanks to their need to projectile vomit it out every five minutes. I’ve touched upon this topic before, so I won’t reiterate my take on it here yet again, but it’s fairly obvious that when it comes to the modern-day conservative movement, there’s a severe disconnect from both Reality and basic Humanity, to be certain. This social and cultural position, underpinned by nothing more that arrogant idiocy and paranoia, fomented by such fringe groups as QAnon and the like, has taken the belief in rather innocuous conspiracy theories, and weaponized them to a terrifying degree unforeseen in this country, prior to the implementation of the Internet.

You would think that in an era where just using my phone, I can order the box set of “The Secrets of Isis” (originally aired under the singular “Isis”), a live-action TV kids show that aired on CBS from 1975-1976, and whose plot centered around Andrea Thomas, an ordinary schoolteacher, who when presented with predicaments that a mere mortal cannot find resolution for, transforms into the Egyptian goddess Isis, using an ancient mystical gold amulet known as the “Tutmose amulet,” then it’s reasonable to assume that any one of these jingoistic jackasses could easily do the same as to where research on a wide range of topics is concerned.

Or maybe not, considering they’d watch this show, and then immediately afterwards, go post on Facebook that there was proof of Magic and Reincarnation, if you only knew where to look.

It’s kind of like they’ve been doing in regards to the 2020 election and the non-existent Issue of voter fraud that Trump concocted out of bulls**it and thin air. Keep this curiosity in mind, if you would-,a Public Policy Polling survey conducted in 2015, found that 30% of Republicans supported the bombing of Agrabah, which just so happens to be, the imaginary realm portrayed in the Disney movie Aladdin. To be transparent, if not equitably fair, so did 19% of polled Democrats, but that’s more due to philosophical differences with Jafar, in relation to his administration’s difficulties in establishing a diplomatic relationship with the residing-in-lamps Jinn community.
First piece of free advice, Jafar? Lose the attitude. It’s not helping. And keep your hands to yourself.

However, if I can pull up the airtime stats, a comprehensive cast list, long-forgotten publicity photos, and the premise of a 46-year-old kids TV show in under 12 seconds, then these uncivil dumbasses can easily discover the truth about voter fraud from a reputable source, versus one provided by some conspiracy theorist’s website run out of what I would have to assume given all indicators, is a tin-foil-clad studio apartment. However, our collective experience and common sense dictate that they won’t endeavor to do so, because not only is the act of research hard on their limited intellect, intrinsically knowing that they’re just plain wrong to begin with, is even harder on their ever so fragile Id.

Hence their need for their hate rallies and their pages on Facebook that serve as safe-spaces and echo chambers alike, and when their fabricated fantasies fail to win the day against the unceasing scourge of damn Libtards armed with actual reality-based facts, they fall back on the only pure response that they have left to use: the treat of targeted violence. If one goes onto any random Right-wing discussion forum, Facebook page, or website catering to the demographic of these conservative cucks, you’ll find a common theme and/or complaint throughout.

Is it regarding how they hate being called “racist” for doing and saying racist things? Or maybe it’s referencing how they’re going to make America “great? Again? By “taking it back” from… well, who it is changes from day to day, but you get the idea. Nope, it’s far simpler than that, I’m happy to report. It turns out the one party who wants to give American citizens access to truly affordable Healthcare, thinks free college should be a thing, as they endlessly advocate for a living wage, as well as and along with believing minorities, women and the LGBTQ community are actually people, are really the dangerously violent ones, all evidence to the contrary be dammed.

In fact, when one tallies up the numbers, using data compiled by a thinktank called the Center for Strategic and International Studies, which compared 900 politically-charged subversions and murders in the United States since 1994, it discovered that only one person’s death in the past two and a half decades was linked to the anti-fascist movement and it’s affiliates, the person who wound up dying, was the lone attacker themselves. And despite the incessantly mindless bleating of conservatives, Antifa has never been connected to a murder, let alone several, as has been falsely claimed. Even when the overall range was expanded to include incidents that occurred independent of the anti-fascist movement, Left-wing violence was only responsible for 21 deaths since 2010, versus the 117 committed by Right-wing extremists within the same period of time.

Adding further insult to the sanctity of alternate facts that conservatives tout as Gospel, the final tally of violence attributed to the Right-wing scorecard, is over 320 murders committed between 1994-2020, so please, my loyal boot-licking disciples of Cult 45, enlighten me as to how you did the math on this one. I’d love to hear if it’s the same inane method you employed to rationalize why you’re attacking the Capitol to usurp American democracy, murdering a cop as you did so, while injuring 140 others, qualifies as a patriotic act that no one should be held accountable for, versus an act of complicit treason that should cost either your citizenship, or your freedom, for the next 20 years, instead.

I’m sure your PowerPoint presentation regarding such, will be utterly  riveting.,

Highlighting the very palpable danger that conservatives willingly provide safe harbor to, Seth Jones, a counter-terrorism expert and who was partially responsible for compiling the data collected, stated in an interview with London’s’ The Guardian newspaper, that: “Left-wing violence has not been a major terrorism threat. The most significant domestic terrorism threat comes from white supremacists, anti-government militias and a handful of individuals associated with the ‘boogaloo’ movement that are attempting to create a civil war within the United States.”

If I were to be flippant, I might make a tasteless joke about not fearing a civil uprising from persons who when they got control of the Capitol, held onto it for less time than it took for most of them to travel there, but I won’t. Even the stupidest of these seditious lard-brains could manage to do some serious carnage if properly motivated, but minus that influence, the risk that they pose is limited mostly to themselves, or depending on their gender, a particularly fetching apple pie or cucumber, once they get done having improper relations with it.

In essence, the majority of these faux American Patriots and loyal foot soldiers for a homegrown Mango Mussolini, are at best, complete and utter blowhards. Total windbags. Or gasbags, as it all depends on what they had for lunch. Certainly, cockalorums to their core, braggarts at best, and far more prone to playing soldier in the woods if not their local Walmart, than actually signing up to go serve their country with the Honor and Dignity they eagerly sacrificed to a spray-tanned calf.

“Meal Team Six, standing by, Mr. President!!!”

In other words, the personification of cowardice, hypocrisy, and ultimately, willing enablers of sedition against the country they supposedly love, while simultaneously hating everyone in it. A small aside: if you find yourself happily keeping company with people that would make Aldrich Ames, Robert Hanssen, and the quintessential American traitor Benedict Arnold, feel right at home, you may want to seriously reconsider your applied standards as to whom you add as a Facebook friend in the future, just a suggestion.

And this, finally- brings me around to the topic for today, that being what happens when this collection of cravenly sedition-supporting sycophants finds themselves facing an impasse, due to both an obviously flawed sense of patriotic loyalty and an exceedingly limited emotional intellect, that they doggedly refuse to improve, whether that’s through the act of self-education or acquiring the skill-set necessary to wean themselves successfully off the GQP Kool-Ade they’ve been mainlining for the last five years..
For me, it isn’t a question of “Can any of these cultists actually do that?”, so much as it is: “Will they ever come back to Reality and decide they genuinely want to?”

Sadly, we all know the answer most likely will be “no”, even when faced with the consistently proven evidence that to their tinted tin-man, they are nothing more than a willing to be defrauded piggybank at best, and traction for the bus he’ll gleefully and eventually throw them under, at worst. And when it comes to marching into battle, they’ll also serve as cannon fodder, his human shields, and subsequent scapegoat for avoiding personal culpability, because there’s no way he’d ever risk himself by leading the charge right out front, and he sure as f**k wouldn’t ever accept the consequences of such an action, as he’s proven more than once.

However, my screed today isn’t going to be fixated on our now thankfully disposed and wholly treacherous Adderall Adulterer, or even his base of bloviating pinheads overall, either. Nope, all of my focus is going to be on only one or two of his fallacious fan-base, who just happen to be excellent examples of how not to handle critical dissent directed at your so-called belief system.

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, Klingons and Cardassians alike, may I present this guy, who’s our first recipient of my Snarkitude, this conservatively charming fellow, who goes by the name of Christopher Daniel Holman:

This walking gift card for Ted Nugent’s SpiritWild Mall.com, made flesh, Holman is an alleged denizen of Silver City, NM, a charming little hamlet, located roughly a three-hour drive away from scenic Tucson, AZ, and previously, resided in the far more famous city of Roswell, NM, a town rumored to be the crash site of a UFO that supposedly occurred in July of 1947.

And when he’s not taking selfies of himself fondling what could be considered by those of a cynical perception as an over-dramatic substitute for what may be allegedly lacking between his legs, he likes to threaten total strangers and the political demographic they represent, with the threat of Death.

You know, as you do in regards to all disagreements, both personal and political?Unfortunately, it’s never this version of the Grim Reaper as drawn by Arthur Adams that shows up to collect you, sad to say, because if it was, I’d be on that faster than I would a box of chilled Ding-Dongs, but I’ve had far too much private experience touching the bunny-slippers of Death, and can personally attest that this particular incarnation is way more on the proverbial money:

Whatever you do, don’t bring up the fact that William “Bill” S. Preston Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan totally kicked his ass, after challenging him to what was supposed to be no more than a friendly game tourney, consisting of Battleship, Twister, Electric Football, and the classic board game, Clue. Seriously- he’s “Death”. How did he not know it was Colonel Mustard in the Library with the candlestick?  Sure, we’ve all made that mistake at least once in our pursuit of mindful entertainment, but this is literally his sole purpose for being- collecting the souls of the dearly and not-so-dearly departed, and ferrying all them off to either their everlasting reward or an eternal and deservedly damnable punishment.

That’s his forever gig, and whether you wish to personify Death as Charon, Thanatos, [not to be confused with Marvel’s evil purple version of The Grimace, AKA: Thanos] Ankou, Śmierć, Giltinė, Laima, Yama, Izanagi, or Memitim, Death is Yin to Life’s Yang, and exists solely as such, despite his name being dropped for eons as the ultimate form of threat, regardless of its credibility. For example, if our parents had actually “killed” us every single time they threatened to, none of you would be here reading this now, and that, is as certain as you know it is to be.

Speaking as a (relatively) well-adjusted adult who somehow survived a disturbingly abusive childhood, the metering of consequences, via the threat of physical violence, almost makes me feel nostalgic, if I were to be so blunt. Once you’ve characterized the act of being strangled with a lamp cord by your Mom as a 12 year old, to be no more than a rite of passage, everything after that is a pure cakewalk in the park, to be honest. So, when I experience threats both credible and laughable in regards to my politics and/or writing, it’s best sunned up by displaying this attitude:
Part of this outlook is due to my inherently cynical personality, and the remainder, because I live under the threat of my health going South on a moment’s whim to begin with. I’m literally tied (via a catheter line) to an insulin pump, an $8500 piece of med-tech that I wear 24/7, save for two hours a week, when I have to recharge its batteries. Now, as I’ve oft noted before, considering the level of nerve pain level I find myself experiencing on the day said threats are delivered, factoring in any of the secondary medication-related side-effects, and dependent on my personal to-do list, I may actually welcome them inside my house.

And that, with no small sense of glee, I’m sure.

So, how and where exactly, does the aforementioned Christopher Daniel Holman fit into this theoretical end-of-my-days scenario? Let me start at the beginning as all good (and some not so good) epics start- that being the sewer-land that is an internet comment section. In my case, that would be the one pinned to the Silver City Sun News, which, according to its FB page bio, is; “your news, entertainment and information resource for Silver City, Grant County, the Gila Region, the Mimbres Valley, and the Mining District – Bayard, Santa Clara and Hurley, New Mexico.”

And as is to be expected from most small-town newspapers, its comment section tends to be rather “spirited” when it comes to debating both the local and national issues of the day, but it rarely goes past the boiling-point of insulting somebody’s lineage, hence the reason why I enjoy using the serious query of “Why do I get the feeling that your family tree resembles a wreath?” so much.

Handle that joke with care kids, because at this point, this go-to classic qualifies as an antique,

The comment thread in question, was inspired by an article regarding the colossal political failure that was Trump’s fantasy border wall, and after I had dared to lay down a a fact-smack regarding the stats of such, as I’m apt to do, this barely sentient jar of Holman mayonnaise showed up, and posted this, a response that one could only perceive as a rational retort to their being directly challenged as to why their personal opinion was erroneously uninformed:

Normally, when I receive these missives of mental illness made tangible, they get routinely designated into three distinct categories; Imminent, Irrelevant, and Idiotic. As you might surmise, the majority of these pathetic attempts at cravenly coercion directed my way, generally fall into the last two classifications, rather than the first and far more ominously disturbing one, thank Odin.

But as to the reason why most of these vitriolic epistles sent my way are so easily dismissed by yours truly, the answer is twofold: the first part of it lies in the distance that most of these pinheads would have to travel to teach me their form of manners, an act which is hard to finance, given the current monetary status of most of these tantrum-throwing twats, and the second is that the majority of them always seem to fall into one of these archetypes:

The mentally obese;

The morbidly paranoid;

And my personal favorite: The allegedly milquetoast cuckold who claims nevertheless, that they’re really an Alpha, despite what their habit of taking selfies with their substitute penii consistently proves who and what they are, beyond a shadow of doubt:

[ Photo Credit: ©Jon Langkov ]

In retrospect, this designation could never be expected to drive future T-shirt sales, as it doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, as it needs to, so let me just rechristen this ilk with the far catchier Ball-less Beta-Bitches, and move on to the topic at hand. Overall, Mr. Holman isn’t really that much of a standout when it come to the endless litany of threats that I receive, as I tend to judge and that rather harshly, on the creativeness of said threat, if not its endeavored execution, but there was one thing that did put him a notch or two above the fray, as it were, and that would be his inadvertently bad sense of timing in issuing it.

A note from me to you- if you’re going to vomit forth utterances of “hunting liberals”, you probably shouldn’t do it roughly a week after your related incel ilk murdered a police officer as they attempted to overturn democracy, as most law enforcement agencies have been taking sort as of late, in regards to that sort of thing. And unfortunately for Mr. Holman, so do I. It’s one thing to inform me tha5 if we ever meet, you’ll “learn me something”, although I’m pretty sure without fear of reproach, that said lesson you’re so graciously offering won’t involve any insightful tips on grammar, spelling, or critical thinking, but when you imply that you’ll be going full Zodiac as well, then you and I are going to have a problem or two, right from the get-go.

But let it never be said that I am not a man of action, so I did what all men of action do- I squirmed into a set of brightly colored Spandex tights, put my underwear on over that as is the classic style, slipped on my custom conservative-skin boots, tied a cape around my neck, and set off into the skies of my metaphorical Mayberry to fight for Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Whatever the hell that is nowadays, as its been a while since I went to one of the meetings. Oops, my bad. I got the American Way confused with my Amway distributorship. On a related note, does anybody need body lotion?

Because I have three cases at home, of just the thing.

All kidding aside, I did what I always do when serious credence must be given to the possibility that some alleged weaponized wackadoo may be only one perceived internet thread slight away from deciding to finally go into that Barnes & Noble a block away from his house, and reenacting Sandy Hook- I contacted the authorities, ASAP. And as I noted earlier, their collective sense of humor these days, is a mite thin when it comes to accepting as flippancy, the statements such as the ones Mr. Holman publicly posted, as if he was doing nothing more that sharing his mom’s church-famous chocolate-chip and gunpowder cake recipe.

In Mr. Holman’s case, he’ll be happy to know that no less than four law enforcement agencies took an interest in his declarations, three of those being New Mexican, and the last, one that has only three letters forming its acronym, but was also definitely in the running as one of the top two who seemed most interested in his fantasized-about future hobby. And to think, I managed to get him all this personal attention without having to spend a dime of my own money. Eat your heart out, Ebenezer Scrooge- daddy knows how to get blood out of a stone, let me tell you. Or in this case, potentially getting a blockhead eventually removed, via his own actions and words, from our free Society.

And no, your little inclusion of “I’m not even gong to waste anymore time on you”, in no way, shape, pr form, negates that you made an actionable threat, worthy of prosecution, So congratulations, Genius. You just made yourself visible on a wide range of legal radar screens, and they and i, cannot thank you enough for that.

But since you did state outright and with some pride attached, I noticed, that you were honing your skills in anticipation for the day you got to hunt Liberals, I also took it upon myself to contact the companies you claimed you worked for in your bio, and warn them of your declared fantasy, as well, eventually discovering that both of the listed companies that I contacted were, in actuality, former employers,

Despite this, they in twain, did respond to my missive almost immediately, which read:

To Whom it may concern:

I am writing in regards to a series of comments posted online by one of your supposed employees, that being a certain Christopher Daniel Holman, who self-identifies on his FB page as working for your company in the capacity of a [INFO CENSORED|

Mr. Holman made some rather threatening, if not disturbing, comments in the open forums of the Silver City Sun News FB page that were directed at me, and anyone else who happens to share my political views. While as a professional journalist, I heartily endorse the concepts of Free Speech and Debate, I draw the line at personal threats, as one might expect.

And I, sure as the day is long, will not accept threats against the general public, given the outcome of what happened on the 6th of this month in our nation’s Capital. I will be reporting Mr. Holman to both his and my local law enforcement agencies, ASAP, and I will make sure that a somber course of action is applied, to whatever extent the Law allows or demands.

Ironically, I’m currently working on a “pitch” article for a handful of regional media outlets regarding the politically-connected acts of violence becoming more prevalent among the conservative movement, so this little slice of WTF is both an interesting and workable possible inclusion to the assemblage of my final draft.

And it is most definitely, a facet I will most certainly address openly, if Mr. Holman does not cease his prosecutable inanity towards myself or others.

The reason why I am contacting you however, is that as someone who has a vested interest in promoting both the business and the activity that your company provides goods and services to, I can only assume that you would want such presented as safe, wholesome, and family-orientated, if I may be so direct.

Generally, an employee making actionable death threats as he advertises that he works for you, tends to put a bit of a crimp in the success of such endeavors, as it should, if I were to offer a humble opinion.

I have attached two (2) screencaps- one of the splash page of Mr. Holman’s FB page, where he indicates that he works for you, and the second of the threats themselves. I will not demand or state the course of action that you should or should not take regarding this matter- after all, it’s your company’s reputation on the line, and not mine, but rest assured, these aren’t the optics you want representing your “brand” in the long run.

In closing, I thank you for your time, and wish you continued success.
Respectfully,
Wayne Reich

Now, the underlying intention regarding my information campaign, was not to infer directly that my local Christopher Throbbin’ here, was, or is, anything more than a fatuous blowhard, prone to acts of sheer vacuous inanity, but given the current state of politics and the notoriously overreacting reputation ascribed to the members of Cult 45, why should anyone wait until one of these jingoistic jackasses pops his cork and starts capping off rounds indiscriminately inside a Starbucks?

I, for one, would rather be safe than sorry, erring on the side of caution and Mr. Holman’s public discomfiture, rather than open Facebook one morning, and find out he, she, or they, cut from the same ilk-cloth that I had relegated to the “idiotic” file on my laptop, had decided to go full-on Kyle Rittenhouse, just because someone dared correct them concerning Republican domestic economic policies. To be blunt, we as a society, can no longer indulge in that kind of luxurious thinking anymore, no matter how much we’d still like to.

The first former employer of Christopher’s, let me know that not only had he not worked for them for close to a year, but that they also took the posted threat seriously enough that they would inform the proper people within their organization to stay vigilant, given the current sociopolitical climate. A conversation that was short, sweet, professional, and to the point, which is the type of tête-à-tête I prefer to engage in.

But the reaction of former employer number two?
Well…

If I were forced to be charitable, the best description I might offer to define the ensuing dialogue, would be that of a semi-controlled freak-out. The individual I talked to, despite being rather open and professional in regards to my queries, had a notable tinge of stressed panic in their voice as they endeavored to distance themselves as far away from Holman’s vile remarks, as I successfully did in regards to my ex-fiancé. Informing me several times, that Holman was never considered to be an “official” employee, due to his being a worker under contract.

Additionally, it was also brought to my attention that his term of servitude had occurred close to three years earlier.

That last factoid did strike as strange, because that position was still listed as current within Holman’s bio, as I noted earlier, which in my humble opinion, indicates that he updates his FB as often as he educates himself regarding the issues that he openly threatens strangers on the internet over. Given my tenacity for detail, I did eventually discover where he now currently works, and while I could directly contact that company as well, )and still may) I’d like to think that the most effective, if not more mature option, would be to just pass that information along to the wide swath of law enforcement agencies I mentioned earlier, as a common courtesy.

In a further act of altruistic civility, I would have also politely informed Christopher of this benevolent consideration, but after calling him out for his posted comments, he immediately “blocked” me on FB, because that’s how you negate your act of public menacing, am I right?

But then again, who knows what course of legally approved action I will eventually take? After all, I want to make sure I give the same amount of contemplation to my actions, that these people have for the last four years, in regards to this country and their fellow citizens.

And therein lies the unintentional irony of it all, because for a group of hardcore firebrands who’ve spent the last four years calling everyone in earshot ”Snowflakes”, and telling Trump’s valid critics; “You lost- get over it”, they melt faster than a pile of them left atop the hotness that is Milla Jovovich, and I won’t even mention the hypocritical causticness of them playing their favorite slogan on loop, as they still happily continue to wave both Trump banners and the Confederate flag, alike. And while the NAZI flag has made the occasional appearance outside pro-Trump rallies from time to time, I won’t even dare suggest that Trump supporters, are NAZI’s, for to do such, would be ignorant on my part, at best, and Odin knows, I don’t want to be misconstrued as possessing Conservative values by doing so.

That being said however, I would note that the majority of American NAZI’s are seemingly all Trump supporters, so rather than host the tried argument about how you really can’t choose who admires you, I’d open the debate floor instead with the query as to exactly why, an organization that espouses genocidal cleansing and the purity of the White Race, would find any note of kinship with you, if you’re such an openly ardent anti-racist to begin with. After all, you don’t ever hear that the members of the Aryan Brotherhood or the KKK were willingly pressing the flesh at a Stacey Abrams fundraiser, do you? That is of course, unless she’s going to be the unwilling guest of honor at one of their front-yard BBQ’s, to be served up in the wee hours of the morning.  

Once again, this is not to say that Christopher shares their abominably wretched point of view, based in ignorantly flaunted racism, but he’s not exactly free of their stain, either. And this is why, if something you admire, respect, promote, or willfully contribute energy and private finances to is considered a positive thing by a demographic who has Eva Braun tattooed on their collective chests, then you might just want to change your hobby, your political ideology, your friends most certainly, and even possibly, your name, at some upcoming point down the road, because son… let’s face it- if you’re marching in lockstep with NAZI’s, you’ve done made some bad personal choices, to say the very least.

And this reality, that for no other reason than that they both partake (albeit from different sides) of the ideological swamp water dispensed nonstop by Trump and the modern-day GQP, is truly one thing that the disciples of Cult 45 absolutely despises, and is the impetus for their incessant need to ceaselessly project their party’s inherent weaknesses upon their perceived enemies, whether the credibility for doing so, exists or not.

There’s a famous maxim, that’s been attributed,to the infamous NAZI Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels, although a valid source coronation for this remains somewhat elusive at best, that states: “Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty of.”, and if I were to be so bold, the pre-immolated Gabby Goebbels would have been exceedingly awestruck by how devotedly the GQP has not only taken this alleged advice to heart., but turned it into a cash cow as well. Nothing this side of sex sells nearly as well as Fear does, and the GQP re-packages it better than AC/DC did its identical song-ending power chord, every time they recorded a “new” album. 

Combining his flair for creative litany with the oratory skills of a racist chicken being boiled alive, Goebbels also formulated the cornerstone of all successful propaganda campaigns, known far and wide as “The Big Lie”. To note; “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

The fact that this conversational deflection is still employed, and that so efficaciously still, is not that surprising- after all, as the proverbial monkeys that we are, we’re naturally hard-wired for the distraction of the overly shiny, especially if it plays into our darkest concerns. Do you have a demographic under your control that you’ve been spoon-feeding paranoia to for decades? Well then, throw in a scapegoat in the form of Minorities, Gays, Women, Immigrants, Non-Christians, Atheists, Feminists, the Poor, the Educated, or the Infirm, and you’ll be off to a good start.

Throw in a few cloves of conspiracy, place in a pressure cooker of self-victimization, topped off with an unequal measure of racism, misogyny, xenophobia, homophobia, and willing ignorance, and when this asinine amalgamation reaches a full boil, serve immediately, heavily garnishing with selective gaslighting and cherry-picked ”statistics”, Serves anywhere from one to 74 million.

And not to worry, the more fearful your gourmands are, the more they’ll willingly swallow, without nary a concern as to the edibility of what you’re serving-, count on it. And the beauty of this recipe is that there’s really no wrong way to make it, as long as your intended gastronomes have their personal bias satisfied. Hell, even if you serve it ice-cold and raw, they’ll still come back for seconds, thirds, and fourths. I’ve heard stories about specific diners who’ve been served the same meal with no variations for years, and it’s still happily consumed, as if it’s the last one they’ll ever have.

Make no mistake in regards to the marketing power of Fear. It can prop up (or derail) a political campaign, ruin lives, personal reputations, and careers, and properly harnessed, it can create either an influential movement, or an unending revenue stream, funded by mindless morons who believe themselves to be dynamic revolutionaries, despite possessing all the cultural panache of a bag of boiled clams. Case in point- this display of vulgar ignorance, proudly hoisted within the confines of the small town that I live just outside of, that being Silver City, NM.  
Other than the fact that this inane exhibition is located directly across from a school, the message emblazoned upon it just reinforces that when it comes to being cowardly hypocritical curs, the formerly non-proud-boy party of Lincoln seemingly has no sense of personal irony. For people who’ve been screaming for years that the Left needed to be respectful of their abominable point-of-view, they’re more than happy to jettison that stance whenever they discern an opportunity to engage in being full-blown candy-assed bitches.

The owner of this supreme example of a public education allegedly failing to take hold, one Nick Lemme, who explained his ode to immaturity in a print interview* with the Silver City’s Daily Press newspaper, noting that: *“I think they are offended by the message, but there is nothing they can report about that, but going after the language gives them something to- it’s a scapegoat to attest to the legality of the whole situation. It’s just me expressing my First Amendment right. I’m not targeting people who voted for Biden- that part of it is just on the flag, I just ordered the first one I found.”
*[
https://www.scdailypress.com/2021/02/24/profane-anti-biden-flags-raise-hackles/ ]

I would opine that rather than waste his money to buy a coarsely-worded flag protesting an election that was settled quite some time ago, Mr. Lemme should have invested in acquiring a far better-fitting human skin-suit, instead. Not surprisingly, Lemme has been viewed as a stalwart patriot by his fellow Trumpanzees, and in the interview, openly brags about receiving a case of beer from an equally intellectually challenged woman who supports his attempt to embarrass his blood line for decades to come.

Honestly, I can’t think of a better reward for such jackassery, as I’ve always felt that in order to still support Trump at this point, one’s habit of day drinking would need to be expanded to a 24/9 endeavor of personal dedication..

Given the Right’s over-reactive disrespect to differing POV’s and the confines of established Reality over the last four years, I find the comments stated within the article by Lemme’s friend, Gabriel Maldonado, to be also hilariously tone-deaf, if not entirely hypocritical: “If they want to come- of course, respectfully- we can have a conversation about it. It’s as simple as that. Driving by and screaming whatever they want to scream, they can do whatever they want, If they come, show us your respect.

Yeah…  about that? I seem to recall a certain phrase you guys loved to bleat incessantly, and at every opportunity to do so, but for the life of me, I can’t recollect what it was… oh wait, I remember now:
And to this, I would add, the warmest suggestion that while you’re at it, that you should go f**k yourself as well. And when it comes time for those feelings of yours to get f**ked, you troglodytes, I can only pray that however the act is performed, it’s done so with a sandpaper-wrapped condom, to achieve the warranted effect, Shockingly, I see no necessity to show any form of respect to persons who comfortably stand in jack-booted lockstep with so-called Americans who support treason, among a host of other disturbingly vile personal qualities. You dare demand “respect” from the very same people you’ve spent no less than four years metaphorically spitting on and threatening?

Good luck achieving that absurdist fantasy. Maybe when you sober up, you’ll understand that Respect must be earned, and only Civility is given. And if I may be so blunt, you don’t deserve the first, and you’re seriously stretching the elasticity of the second. Especially after reading the following, quoted directly from the article itself: Lemme said that he does feel like the flag has placed a metaphorical target on his back, however, which is why he flies the flag underneath a darkened American flag. He said the blacked-out American flag was used by some Confederate military units during the Civil War as a symbol to not give nor accept quarter — a juxtaposition to the white in the real American flag.

 “A lot of military people wear it,” Lemme said. It’s just basically stating no mercy if they want to do something and target me – that’s basically a warning.””

Let me deconstruct this down to the brass tacks, if for no other reason than to highlight the the fact that I loathe statements of arrogance from persons who confuse displays of nearly sociopathic contrariness, with being a noteworthy badass. To note, if a target has been indeed, “placed” on Mr. Lemme’s obviously empty head, he’s the delusional dumbass who put it there in the first place, He didn’t need to hoist a flag that showcases his ignorance, nor did he need to publicize his act of dipshittery via a sure-to-be-noticed media interview, either. Just saying.

As to the Civil War claim of the Flag’s origin, Lemme is essentially correct. But does anyone else see the blatant absurdity in his failed attempt to repurpose a symbol of Confederate resistance as an homage to American patriotism? What’s next, Nick? Going to hoist a *Swastika as a “tribute” to Hinduism? Not to mention, we as a whole, can hardly take his “warning” of showing his critics “no mercy” if they dare test his resolve at face value, considering his allegiance to a political ideology based on tenets of hypocrisy, sedition, and cowardice.
*[The Sanskrit word swastika, means “conducive to well-being”. In Hinduism, the unfortunately appropriated by the NAZI party version is right-facing, (
) and is called swastika, symbolizing Surya (“sun”), prosperity and good luck, while the left-facing symbol () is called sauwastika, symbolizing night, or the tantric aspects of Kali.]

Short of a violent assault upon his person, (which I would never condone) what threat does Lemme feel he’s currently under? Is he so afraid that an as yet unknown person is going to force him to accept Reality, that he feels the need to unsheathe his metaphorical micro-penis as if he were having a homoerotic locker-room sword-fight? And just how exactly pray tell, would he handle being yelled at, or disrespected to his face?

Lord knows, he and his fellow beer-swilling-brotard are hardly going to bring a debate of any merit to the adult’s table, as it’s almost a given that any argument they would fail to launch would be about as meritorious as any of the other paranoid conspiracy theories that they ascribe to as Gospel, and then virulently spread as if it were conversational Chlamydia. So, given his hardly subtle threat, what are the odds that rather than use his adult words, as they don’t utilize those at the Kid’s Table he currently sits at, that his reaction to a round of heated and well-deserved criticism won’t be to commit to an act of unnecessarily violent overreaction?

It’s fairly obvious that Mr. Lemme is looking for a fight of some sort, and that most possibly due to his feeling of being politically, if not culturally, impotent, but is he entirely sure that if and when it arrives, he’d be up for the challenge, given the fact his mango man-crush role model is a total f**king coward? As we’ve all seen from Mr. Holman’s earlier example, when hamstrung by their own inability to adeptly weaponize their disjointed thought-process, these cultists immediately resort to the hallmark of the intellectually frustrated- the threat of violent retribution for their suffering a slight, albeit actual, or as is typically true of the Cult 45 Klan, entirely fabricated from their obsessive need to present themselves as being victimized at every turn.

For people who claim not to live in fear, they seemingly spend a lot of their free time cowering at the merest mention of: abortion rights, affirmative action, Antifa, atheists, BLM, the cause of African-Americans civil rights, green energy, college educations, reality, credible evidence, gun control, Gay rights, police brutality, masks, the Free Press, and women having the audacity of being in charge of their own body autonomy. Once again, this is not to say or subtly imply that any of the aforementioned people within this screed share or support the entirety of these detestable pillars of modern-day conservatism, but they also can’t deny the fact that at best, they’re willingly splitting the rent on their time-share  hate-house, either.

One of these things is quite like the other, one of these things definitely belongs, and all that.

You cannot laud America as a beacon of inclusivity, while hating all the other people in it. You cannot demand Free Speech while denying others theirs. You cannot demand others follow rules that you yourself, openly ignore. You cannot call yourself a “patriot” while supporting those in power who advocate for sedition. And you most certainly don’t get to whine about fearing for your personal safety Mr. Lemme, when you’re the one who started the fight, or when you openly post implied threats against those who disagree politically with you, Mr. Holman.

That’s not being an American. Those are the hallmarks of a budding fascist, which when given all the empirical evidence presented by Cult 45 as of late, shows just where their true loyalty lies, and it’s not to the ideals of the land that gave them the freedoms they’ve corrupted to justify taking the very same from others. Mark my words, and mark them well- these people are Americans in the same way that Donald Trump is a faithful husband and scholar. I will never understand how a man whose presidential library is going to be located inside the darkened confines of a seedy porn shop broom closet, still maintains such a sway, despite his essentially possessing all the intellect, tact, and competence of a barely sentient, and bronzer-dipped, Cheeto.

But I do know this- he’s still an infectious menace to our democracy, so long as he still owns the souls of his cult, and has unfettered access to their wallets. And given the fact of how easily his cult was inspired to march upon the capitol for no other reward than to fuel their Fanta Fascist’s delusions of grandeur and dictatorship, we shouldn’t disregard that the reality that he’s more than willing as sacrifice as many lives as possible to satisfy his ravenous ego.

After all, he allowed 400K of his citizens to die, so what’s a few more insignificant corpses on the flaming pyre of his idiopathic petulance?

Besides, despite his earlier claim of “If Joe Biden wins, you’ll never see me again”, no one with both a pulse and a functioning intellect ever thought for a second that he actually meant it. The mango man-child above all else, suffers from raging narcissism, and he is as addicted to that flaw of his character and the adulation it brings, as he allegedly is to Adderall and adultery. As long as there are sheep willing to be fleeced for the “privilege” of bleating mindlessly within his presence, he’s never going away willingly, or contritely. In addition, neither are his just a few months shy of cosplaying Jonestown, cultist base.

So what are we as a nation to do, if we can’t safely reintegrate these pod-people pinheads back into the realm of sanity again? Keep in mind, this demographic has no interest in achieving unification, although I would opine that the feeling is hardly exclusive to their side of the political fence alone, as the meme below suggests.
Personally, I’m perfectly fine keeping these seditionist-supporting apostates right out in front of me, rather than within my ranks and the metaphorical machine, where the damage they could theoretically inflict, could be far worse than what they’ve already accomplished, terrifying as that thought is to contemplate. We must unify, you beseech? To that, I jauntily offer up the following retort: GO F**K YOURSELF, AS WELL AS THEM, because there’s no way in Gehenna, I’d ever trust any of these treasonous troglodytes with any amount of critical responsibility, regardless of their outward sincerity. 

In all seriousness, should any of these complicit enablers of treason and divisiveness be allowed to just slither away consequence free, for no better excuse than an unfounded sense of pathetic optimism that all should be forgiven for the “greater good”? F**k that. And sideways, no less. There’s no way on this f**ked up Earth that any grace should ever be shown towards those among u who tried so earnestly and openly, to rend asunder that which has bound this country together since its inception, in the name of a man-child demagogue who has spent his entire existence within it, flagrantly s****ing on every one of its core values as a hobby.   

Here’s the deal. No matter what your politics are, Left or Right, Bleeding Heart or Dusty Stone, Clintonite or Reaganite, I’d like to think deep down that we all can agree on the fact that the last four years have been a goddamn dumpster-fire s**t-show of near Biblical proportions, and it isn’t over yet. You’ve seen the scrawled graffiti up and about that says: “Make Racists afraid again”, right? Well, I say we go one step further, collectively band together, and truly strike Fear (literally and metaphorically) into the ratf**ked souls of ALL who willingly brought us to this point in time.

And when it comes to dealing with the likes of keyboard-fellating cravens such as Mr. Holman, or the odiousness of the anti-Biden flag-hoisting f**kwits in my neck of the woods, maybe we should glean a nugget or two of procedural advice from the arrogant posturing offered up for display by their poster boy, Nick Lemme? After all, he did say: “It’s just basically stating no mercy if they want to do something and target me- that’s basically a warning.”

Warning received. Warning understood. Whining definitely most noted.

We’re still going to do whatever the hell we need to do, in order to get back on the right path once more, and since there’s nothing you can do to stop us in the first place, short of attempting to betray your country yet again, I’d suggest you either buy a ticket to the event, or get the f**k out of our way. Because if there is a target we’re aiming for, it’s not on any of your uselessly paranoid heads, so much as it is at restoring America’s reputation, both here and abroad.

And if you dare get in our way of doing so. may whatever Deity you ascribe to, help you, Because your traitorous Herr Twitler, wouldn’t condescend to lift one of his gilded fat fingers to do so, and Lord knows, we will never be in fear of an intellectually inadequate “army” so asinine, that they can be called to willing self-sacrifice under the Chines-made banner of a bumper sticker ideology.

And that, unlike any of Trump’s promises, you can take to the bank.
An American one, of course, as he’s borrowed all the money the Russian ones had to offer.

“Now, now my good man, this is no time to be making enemies.”
(Voltaire on his deathbed, in response to a priest asking him that he renounce Satan.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Con-versation Pt.2 (Fake it till you make it)

“You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant.” – Harlan Ellison

Hello Blogiteers!

It’s truly been a wonderful day in my neighborhood- I got to go spend some time shooting a snow covered cemetery, had a nice strong cup of Earl Grey when I got back home, and somehow, still managed to make a whole bunch of Trumpanzees cry, bitch, moan, and eventually run for their online lives. That which best sums up my attitude when it comes to dealing with the members of Cult 45, is perfectly encapsulated by a pivotal scene from the James Bond flick “Tomorrow Never Dies”, that occurs between our hero 007, and the comedically amusing, and yet still wholly evil hitman, Dr. Kaufman, which goes like this:

Dr. Kaufman: “This is very embarrassing. It seems there is a red box they need in your car, only they can’t get it open. They want me to get you to tell how to open it. I feel like an idiot, I don’t know what to say.”

[Bond just smiles]

Dr. Kaufman: “I am to torture you if you don’t do it.”

James Bond: “Do you have a doctorate in that as well?”

Dr. Kaufman: “No, no this is more like a hobby… but I am very gifted.”

Now, while I can claim with some authority that my main gig is that of a Jack-of-all-Trades Creative, my main go-to and fallback these days, is that of a professional Writer. But as far as where my “hobby” is concerned, excoriating those within the conservative movement is definitely where I tend to really bring my “A” game, if I do say so myself, and I do. But to be fair, how hard is it to win a battle of wits when your opponents consistently arrive unarmed? We’ve all heard the axiom of “Like shooting fish in a barrel”, but these people are more akin to the cow in Douglas Adam’s most excellent book, “Restaurant at The End of The Universe”, than anything else.

Of what do I speak?  From Chapter 17…

“Well,” said the animal, “I know many vegetables that are very clear on that point. Which is why it was eventually decided to cut through the whole tangled problem and breed an animal that actually wanted to be eaten and was capable of saying so clearly and distinctly. And here I am.” 

It managed a very slight bow. “Glass of water please,” said Arthur.

“Look,” said Zaphod, “we want to eat, we don’t want to make a meal of the issues. Four rare stakes please, and hurry. We haven’t eaten in five hundred and seventy-six thousand million years.”

The animal staggered to its feet. It gave a mellow gurgle. “A very wise choice, sir, if I may say so. Very good,” it said, “I’ll just nip off and shoot myself.” He turned and gave a friendly wink to Arthur. “Don’t worry, sir,” he said, “I’ll be very humane.”

Granted, while the thought of an animal that’s 100% OK with being eaten would be gratefully accepted without question by those who are guilt-stricken by the process in which their meat found its way onto their plate, the opposite reaction should also hold true when that state of mind is applied to people. Or so I would like to think. But when it comes to Cult 45, these future case studies in group psychosis, cannot wait to offer up their throats in an act of selfless defense to delay, if not stop entirely, whatever allegorical blade may threaten their mango-tinted man-child.

The only difference between these sociopathic cultists and the one who followed Jim Jones of the People’s Temple into his Guyanese grave, are their Chinese-made red hats, KKK derived slogan, and a far wider variety of Kool-Ade flavors to eventually spike with cyanide. Make no mistake, these people would have, and still may, very well follow their Fanta Fuhrer into his version of the Berlin bunker, emerging only to see the light of day, when they collectively decide to do their petrol-soaked homage to Joseph Goebbels, as a final encore.

Insane take, you say? Too outlandish, by far, you think? No evidence to support such an absurd claim? Well then, take a gander at some of these comments, collected from one of the numerous Facebook pages that have sprung up during Trump’s tenure as the rapist of American values, if only for enjoying the sheer amount of outright farcical lunacy they contain:





Sure, these may read as if they were satire, but sadly, they are not. However, they do serve as the perfect yardstick to measure just how many delusional dips**ts walk freely among us, just waiting for the day Donald Trump will descend from Mar-a-Lago once more, via his great big golden escalator, throwing out autographed rolls of paper towels, to the throng of his wretched faithful, drooling in mindless adoration, just below the level of his contemptuous gaze.

Now, if you want to continue exploring further as to just what a gaggle of ignorantly seditious nitwits looks like, then I’d advise you to stop reading this screed for a second or two, and peruse the “Reich N’ Roll” gallery on my website for a few minutes or so, just in case you’ve ever felt the need to be further disappointed by your so-called fellow humans past the point that you already are. This accidental side-project of mine, which honestly started as a joke, has quickly grown into both a side-hustle of sorts, as well as becoming one of my most “popular” galleries as well. And the best part of all of this, is that I had to do literally nothing to both find them, and then, have them engage with me.

Actually, I have to modify that somewhat, as there was some limited effort on my part, to be quite honest. Fortunately, all I had to do was show up on a randomly-chosen conservative social media page, start openly posting common sense, facts, and the best attractant for acquiring hostile Trumpanzees to oneself, Reality. They may hate it, but they really are powerless against its hypnotic pull in regards to their idiocy, glad to say. And man, has it been productive, if not just outright fun overall. Watching these cult members rationalize everything Trump says and does, while knowing they’d crucify Obama (or any Democrat) for doing the same, is hypocrisy-based joy of the highest caliber, and the reservoir of it is literally endless.

I’ve touched on this before in earlier screeds, and I find myself addressing it yet again, because it’s a story-arc that seemingly has no end. Well, as of yet, anyway. So, once more into the breech, as I gather up the loose threads of an earlier blog, where I laid out the so-called thought process of one of Trump’s legion of lying monkeys, and discovered to no one’s surprise at all, that when it comes to the darklands of undiagnosed mental illnesses, Trump’s fan-base will be an economic boon for, and a cornerstone of, the psychoanalytic field for decades to come. As you may recall from the most recent blog,, I previously introduced you to a lovely individual named Mary Cecelia Walker, who, when she’s not busy posting cherry-picked misinformation online, spends an equal amount of her time slavishly doing the same in regards to conspiracy theories, so debunked and hilariously ludicrous, that even Alex Jones might second-guess himself.

[Note that I said “might”, not “would”..]

I highlighted a few of her more inane posts, as well as some outright fabrications, pointed out her ignorant as f**k POV regarding social distancing and mask usage protocols, and left on a high note, because that’s what I do. But now I’m back, and we’re going to address some of her,,, let’s just say, truly unique takes on Reality, and the numerous events that occur within it. To do so, I’ll be directly touching upon three things very near and dear to Mary’s alleged heart; fake news, racist observations, and lastly, her mindless adulation of everybody’s favorite traitor and vile mango-tinted man-child, Donald Trump.

First topic at bat, “Fake News”, both the obsession and favorite slur of our now thankfully disposed Fanta Fascist, which I will happily point out, was not a real thing, until we got a fake President who promoted its dangerous disingenuousness with the same passion he displays when he brags about sexually assaulting women, and how he wants to bang his own daughter.

This term that Trump is fond of tossing out as if it were an African-American tenant, or personal checks to a porn star, is demarcated as “false or misleading information presented as news, whose main adjective is typically, harming the reputation of a person or organized structure, as a means of generating income via advertising revenue.” This particularly specific definition has been further clarified by noted Media scholar Nolan Higdon, who broadened the understood parameters of its existence as “false or misleading content presented as news and communicated in formats spanning spoken, written, printed, electronic, and digital communication.” In essence, a dead-on assessment of FOX, Newsmax, InfoWars, Sinclair Broadcast Group, and especially the most odious of them all, the flaming sewage-pile that calls itself OANN, AKA: One America News Network.

Along those lines, here’s an edited response to a posting of mine where I dared use actual facts to argue / prove that a certain Democratic official who was instrumental in turning Georgia “blue”, was in no actual danger of being convicted for what is at best, a ham-fisted attempt at direct manipulation of public opinion to quash their future political influence. They’ll fail of course, but that doesn’t mean that their false conspiracy baton won’t be handed off to the party faithful, who will carry it as far as they can, regardless of its non-existent accuracy, or the consequences of its fallout, whether it’s cultural, political, or personal:
While this may present as funny, and it certainly is to be sure, the tone-deafness it requires of these members of a Death cult to tell you, and in all seriousness no less, that you’re the one disseminating “fake news”, when their social media pages read as if they’re the pop-up version of the Anarchist Cookbook, is quite possibly, the most unintentionally ironic self-own I’ve read in a while, hands down.

This is not to say that Liberal news sources don’t venture into false territory for the sake of advancing their demographic reach, but even I as a cynic, know who has a far better track record for honesty than these pied pipers of purulence do. But for Mary, postings and memes such as these, are just part of the Gospel of Truth she takes her erroneous cues from. And since I’ve now set those pins up, let’s do a 7-10 split, and take them all down. You know. For fun?

First up, Mary posted this gem of a falsehood right after an incident in which a domestic terrorist wired an RV in downtown Nashville to blow, which pretty much leveled a city block, as seen in the photos diectly underneath it.

And while no one was (Thank Odin) seriously injured, due in no small part to a pre-taped warning broadcast from inside the RV, that clearly warned passersby of the bomb’s presence as it recited a countdown to its eventual detonation, the meme itself presents a concern in regards to its assertion, and it is this:

Now for most people, being proven wrong is not that big a deal, especially when their “proof’ to begin with, was a meme featuring an animated fictional character from a 1970’s kid’s cartoon, but as we’ve already noted from my last screed, Mary is not most people. Not even close. Sticking with the theme of children’s entertainment she obviously enjoys, I would dare suggest she’s more akin to one of those Hungry Hungry Hippo toys, but instead of swallowing marbles, she swallows literal insanity instead:

Keep in mind, that as usual, she provides no proof to back up her fevered idiocy, presents no counter-argument for debate, and no rational validation as to why she so earnestly believes in adding yet another crazy-straw to the already burgeoning pile located right outside what I can only assume, is a she-shed stacked to the rafters with home-made tin-foil chapeau. But as the saying goes, you can’t keep a good (mad)woman down, and in Mary’s case, she’s not ever going to let a little thing like actual Reality dare challenge her deepening affection for that which is truly ludicrous:

Let me try to put this overreach into some form of perspective, if I may: Mark Zuckerberg is to Nazism, what Republicans are to Patriotism. That is to say, one has nothing to do with the other, and I’m fairly certain that I could successfully argue the case that fact-checking postings for accuracy within the confines of a private business platform, is at its worst, still a few steps above openly committing the act of Genocide. I know, I know. I have no definitive proof of this, but let’s just call it a gut feeling, shall we?

I’m not gonna lie here, but I LOVE this statement of pure jackassery- how could you not? If the idiocy inherent within is contextualized properly, it essentially states that in order to avoid the unfounded threat of America transforming into a model of communism, we should all vote for the Mad King who patterns himself after the Communist dictators of old, and who would rule as if he were cosplaying Stalin with a dime-store tan. Yep, that checks out on the side of reality, and it doesn’t sound completely insane… at all.

However, thi particular slice of lunacy presents as completely insane, but when you take into account that Mary posts memes featuring fictional characters as concrete proof of conspiracies, her asinine assertion may be just as simple a case of her honestly confusing Microsoft founder Bill Gates with some random villain she saw in a Bond film, which at its core, is both sad, but also equally hilarious. Not to mention, she obviously doesn’t understand how implanted technology works, despite how often she uses it to embarrass herself.

Sigh… no, they don’t, you ignorant dumb-as-f**k-moron. In fact, NOBODY ON THIS F**KED-UP PLANET SUPPORTS INFANTICIDE. NOBODY. NOT POLITICIANS, NOT DOCTORS. AND MOST CERTAINLY, NOT THE WOMEN WHO CARRIED IT TO TERM, EITHER. I seriously have no clue what the hell is wrong with you, but at this point, the only medication that could be utilized to treat it, would be a mixture of Holy Water, Napalm, and electroshock therapy.

For clarity, let me sate that I don’t, on any level, believe in mob justice or politics as a means of conveying ideas, or institutional change. That being said, I also have no problem with those who decide to actively tear down iconographic totems of treason and inhumanity, as the soon to all be removed Confederate memorials represent. If we don’t have statues of Stalin, Mao Tse-tung, Putin, Mussolini, or Hitler lining our streets and sitting in our parks, so why in the hell should we have such blasphemies dedicated to Robert E. Lee, Bedford Forrest, or Jefferson Davis? The only reason people want to keep these seditious statues is to reinforce the notion that White makes Right, and nothing else.

And if you don’t believe me, try suggesting the erection of a statue of Harriet Tubman or Huey P. Newton in their place, and watch how fast these people drop their “But History needs to be remembered”, excuse by the side of the road, as if it were an unwanted puppy, or the child of their mistress.

As you may have guessed from reading this post, there’s something slightly off about it. Other than the fact that states can’t “pull” the licenses of a major television network, as regulating such falls under the chartered authority of the FCC, the source listed for this bombshell is from… wait for it, a KNOWN SATIRE SITE. Yes, you read that right. She literally took an obvious joke post and reiterated that it was factual, but remember boys and girls- the Democrats are the ignorant sheep here, not Mary, the queen of Little Ho Veep’s brainless flock.

Call me cynical, but I have a very funny feeling that if any portion of this were even remotely true, every major news network across the globe would be all over it, including the so-called Liberal Media, which as has been noted, is only as liberal as the conservative corporations that own them. And considering the source of this “bombshell” is a disgraced and disavowed sexual predator now doing his imaginary news show out of his Mom’s garage, I’m fairly certain we can ignore it, just like FOX willingly did regarding the multiple sexual harassment claims against him.

From the article located at: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2021/01/21/national/politics-diplomacy/trump-believers-tokyo/ :

“A small group of Japanese fans of Donald Trump took to the streets of Tokyo on Wednesday, shouting support for the outgoing U.S. president hours before his successor Joe Biden was sworn into office. About 120 people joined the march in central Tokyo, with participants waving American and Japanese flags and holding banners claiming Trump was “the true winner” of the Nov. 3 election.”

Now for those of you who actually can do math, 120 is NOT equal to “Thousands”. Just pointing that out. Not so much for you, but for Mary, who’s ability to count seems to just as well-developed as the one she used to find this fallacious factoid.
Considering that 1984 was a perfect template for Trump’s fortunately botched attempted coup of American Democracy, Mary’s usage of it, as yet another meme masquerading as presented proof in lieu of facts, is quite ironic, to say the very least. And not too shockingly, it’s also false. From an article located at: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/orwell-1984-predict-covid/ :

“In late 2020, Snopes readers asked us to look into a series of internet memes and social media posts that presented a quotation from George Orwell’s classic dystopian novel “1984” as being eerily prescient of the “lockdown” restrictions imposed by governments throughout the world during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The quotation, which was in every instance attributed to Orwell and/or “1984,” read as follows: “Everything other than working was forbidden: walking in the streets, having fun, singing, dancing, getting together, everything was forbidden.”

The quotation was not authentic and did not originate in “1984” or anything else written or uttered by Orwell. A search of online versions of the novel does not yield the line included in the memes in 2020, or similar formulations of words. Even if the novel itself were not available to consult, good reason existed to doubt the authenticity of the quotation. For example, we could find no record of the quotation in a newspaper archive that stretches back more than a century, and no record on Twitter or Facebook from before 2020. Given the novel’s considerable cultural impact over the past 71 years, it would be implausible that such a quotable line should supposedly be “discovered” for the first time, in 2020.”

And this is why, boys and girls, that Reading is Fundamental- it keeps you from looking like a complete and total idiot.

I gotta give Mary some begrudging credit here, to be honest. It’s one thing to be individually racist, paranoid, and trans-phobic, but somehow, using only her sense of dim-witted dumbf**kery, and a hysterical example of incompetent Photoshop, she manages to blend it together into a truly rancid mix that proves why certain people holding these fantastical views as gospel, need to be sexually sterilized for the common good, if not their own, but that’s a debate for another time.
In this post of pure prissiness, Mary is incensed that Vice President Mike Pence actually dared to follow the letter of the law, choosing not to be a co-conspirator to Trump’s soon to be enacted treasonous attempt to overturn American democracy. She goes on to claim (without proof, of course) that the duly elected President and VP are “Communists” and that “All ILLEGAL votes are counted!” None of this true, and it’s fairly obvious that Mary, like most conservatives who toss this word round as if it were their self-righteousness, also has no idea what a Communist is, to begin with. Not to mention, there were no “illegal” votes to begin with, because in the end, at least 81M real Americans were sick and f**king tired of Donald J, Trump’s bulls**t.

But there is a bonding moment to be discovered here, believe it or not. Like me, she also despises former AZ Senator Jeff Flake for his spinelessness, except in her case, it’s because he refused to stand in solidarity with her mango man-child, and in mine, because he refused to stand in solidarity against him, until he realized his career in politics was over. And conservatives say there’s no common ground to be found?

Nay, say I.

Moving on, we now find ourselves knee-deep in the favorite litter-box of the Right-wing, that being the fertile field of fecal fallaciousness that is Racism. For those of you new to this Galaxy, the definition of racism is thus: a belief that race is a fundamental determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”  In the case of Liberals, we know this is a truly inhuman and abhorrent belief system, and knowing such, endeavor to end it’s vile reign of error. However, in the case of modern-day conservatives, they openly (and loudly) insist that it no longer exists, so that they can plead supreme offense when they’re caught red-handed engaging in acts of “it”- you know… the thing that doesn’t exist?

Now to be fair, Mary doesn’t espouse blatantly racist views quite in the manner that Ken Cykala, a previous subject of my literary scrutiny does, but she definitely tiptoes around the racist racetrack every now and then, when the need arises. However, much like Ken, she also allegedly has a huge bone stuck in her craw when it comes to the BLM and Antifa protest movements that have either galvanized or divided the country, depending on the intellectual capacity of the person you find yourself talking to. In Mary’s case, these two are the worst boogeymen to come along since Barrack Obama, and most likely- for the same reason.

That being, they make over-privileged and wholly paranoid, White people like Mary and Ken, very uncomfortable regarding the long-overdue discussion of the African-American experience in this country, And when it comes to their realization that Antifa actually stands for “Anti-fascist”, it’s pretty clear as to why most conservatives are terrified by them, given their ongoing support of one. They’re not actually worried about being the victims of violence, they’re terrified they’ll be held accountable for the abominations of Republican policies and actions that they’ve openly supported for decades now.

That’s it in a “nut” shell. No more. No less.

So, to open up this section of desperately escalating White fear presented as faux social concern, I’ll start with this brain-dead nugget, yet another call to arms which in the end, will go unanswered, because if these jackasses fight half as good as they attempt sedition, all of these companies will have seen record profits by now.

This listing of 279 companies that have decided to stand on the right side of Humanity if not History, has been unceremoniously removed from its initial hosting site, but with a little digging, one can still find it floating around the Web, as I did. As the full tally is far too large to display here in it’s entirety, I’ve taken it upon myself to do the legwork for you, and while the companies run the gamut from Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream to YouTube, rest assured that truly, every one of these companies WANTS YOU DEAD. EVERY SINGLE ONE. NOT SERVICED. NOT HAPPY. DEAD. DEAD. DEAD. DEAD. Because, you know, that’s how companies stay in business- by openly killing off their potential customer base.

My first solid clue? Ben & Jerry’s newest flavor release, “Murder Monkey”, whose label depicts a homicidal primate wearing the infamous Bernie Sanders mittens, as it strangles the GOP elephant to death atop a giant pile of murdered cartoon babies. Those arrogant bastards, thinking that we wouldn’t notice. Well, evil corporate financiers of domestic terrorism, who’s laughing now? Us liberals as usual, because the day I actually have to fear that Pornhub (yep, they’re on the list) is trying to kill me, that’s the moment I will happily check myself into a facility with its very own secured bouncy castle room.

Once again, we see the end result of what happens when one’s intellect is shovel-fed a steady diet of bumper sticker ideology seasoned with racial ignorance. To note, BLM does not “hate” the Police. They just want them to be demilitarized, and trained to handle stressful situations using established de-escalation techniques, rather than deadly force, which is five more times likely to be used against African-Americans, than Whites. Shockingly, it really is that simple. And as for Mary’s staggeringly stupid claim that BLM also hates the firemen and police officers that lost their lives on 9/11, I will only say this- if your head gets any further up your own ass Mary, you’ll be using your belly button as an observation window.

Oh look everybody- the elderly White woman has arrived to tell those way too loud and overly uppity African-Americans what to do regarding their own protest movement, so let us all pay rapt attention to her Ivory tower-launched advice. I might suggest that Mary herself go and talk to the African -American community and learn about the movement from its members, rather than the voices in her head, but we all know she would never do that, because it would take far too much time and energy that she could use to maintain her crusade of ignorance. For clarity, BLM is NOT a community-based charity or assistance organization. It is, as clearly stated in its publicly accessible mission statement, as:

A global organization in the US, UK, and Canada, whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes. By combating and countering acts of violence, creating space for Black imagination and innovation, and centering Black joy, we are winning immediate improvements in our lives.

We are expansive. We are a collective of liberators who believe in an inclusive and spacious movement. We also believe that in order to win and bring as many people with us along the way, we must move beyond the narrow nationalism that is all too prevalent in Black communities. We must ensure we are building a movement that brings all of us to the front.

We affirm the lives of Black queer and trans folks, disabled folks, undocumented folks, folks with records, women, and all Black lives along the gender spectrum. Our network centers those who have been marginalized within Black liberation movements. We are working for a world where Black lives are no longer systematically targeted for demise.

We affirm our humanity, our contributions to this society, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression. The call for Black lives to matter is a rallying cry for ALL Black lives striving for liberation.”

But don’t try to tell Mary any of this. Because not only will she not understand what it actually means, she really doesn’t want to in the end, as losing her fear and gaining wisdom, would really screw up her Boogeyman Bingo game-card.

Now, here’s something candidly refreshing- a crime statistics meme lifted from QAnon, that most non-biased of all the political ideologies, sourced from the Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Crime Victimization Survey. Cherry-picked by our insipid intellectual Mary as a means to justify her embrace of sugared racism, there’s a few things I’d like to point out here. First, there’s no graph position for White-on-White crime, and you’ll notice that the one for African-Americans immediately infers that by definition, they are far more violent than Whites, which if analyzed, is simply not accurate.

A side note- when I was writing about the aforemen6ioned Ken, I touched upon this very subject, as he was fond of posting cherry-picked and entirely false race-based crime stats, in relation to justifying his inherent bigotry. When I did the research to see if he was even remotely close to being accurate, not only was he [to no one’s surprise] off, he was off by miles. The exchange of factual versus entirely bogus numbers unfurled like this:

Ken “BLACKS KILLED BY WHITES- 2%”

AB: Try 7.6%. But to be fair, the cops are doing a better job of it than you guys, as of late. And to be fair, you people have been more preoccupied going after immigrants, so I can understand why you’re a tad bit behind your projected numbers these days.

Ken; “BLACKS KILLED BY POLICE- 1%”

AB: The available data suggests that it’s closer to 9%, but African-Americans also face a fatality rate 2.8 times higher than Whites. Even more disturbing is the statistic that Black victims were more likely to be unarmed (14.8%) than Whites, (9.4%) which sort of bolsters the widely held public opinion that cops are more than happy to shoot first, and ask questions later, when it comes to their inter-racial encounters with the African-American citizenry of this country.

Ken: “WHITES KILLED BY POLICE- 3%”

AB: Oh look- finally a category where Whites finally bring their “A” game, as the rate here is 14%. Way to go Caucasians! You’re making us all very proud. And doing the world a favor, by self-removing yourself from an increasingly stagnating gene pool.

Ken: “WHITES KILLED BY WHITES- 16%”

AB: The average is 82.4%, actually. That seems pretty high for a bunch of people who supposedly set the standard for following Law & Order, mayonnaise-boy, but I digress. So sorry to see your narrative of Whites being slaughtered by Blacks going out the proverbial window, but that’s the way the racist vanilla wafer crumbles, I guess.

Ken: “WHITES KILLED BY BLACKS- 81%”

AB: It’s closer to 14.8 percent, but as we’ve seen, your bigotry impairs your ability to do the merest of research, so we’ll give you a pass. Kind of like how your kindergarten class did when you failed naptime, but on the upside, you did excel at eating paste.

Ken: “BLACKS KILLED BY BLACKS- 97%”

AB: Sadly, it’s 90% to be honest. And while with this one Ken did get close, it’s still seven points off his claim, and only 7.6% higher than White on White rates, a fact I’m sure Ken will ignore in favor of his having a case of the vapors at the thought an African-American family might move in next door, and start doing White people stuff without his permission.

And to add to the growing pile of corrected data, here’s another graph showing crime rates clearly defined by race:
Now, while it’s clear that African-Americans appear to be slightly above Whites, they are running almost neck and neck. And let us also not forget that your average White community is rarely prone to suffering the far-ranging social concerns that your typical lower-income minority neighborhood does. Issues such as racial profiling, inequality in relation to sentencing, job scarcity, drug-related crime, economic and educational disadvantages, and the almost criminal under-representation regarding people of color in their local, state, and Federal government.

And yes, these factors should be taken into consideration when issuing these types of asinine blanket statements, but what do I know? I’m just a guy who’s brain actually works, and therefore, I question anything that fits my personal biases as if they were tailor-made for each other. Better to be informed and safe, than wrong and sorry.

In this exchange, Mary combines her anti-masking paranoia and Islamophobia into one bitter little smoothie, and chugs it as if she were Bluto Blutarsky from Animal House, playing a round robin of Beer Pong. And while we know that it wasn’t the Germans who bombed Pearl Harbor…

We still love you anyway.

Isn’t it amazing how much “proof” of pre-ordained nefariousness these unamerican jackasses have managed to unearth regarding their specific delusions as of late? Sure, most of it turns out to be selectively edited, or outright fabricated in the end, but I’m sure that couldn’t possibly apply here, right? So, let’s see…  let’s Google the “author” of this piece, an individual who goes by the name of Tony Carpo, to see just exactly who and what he is. And when I do, what comes up? Well, this slice of blankness:
One reference. Only one. And strangely, no other info regarding this widely distributed posting that’s been seen popping up all over Right-wing media as if it were two rabbits that have been left alone inside a locked closet. Weird, that. It’s almost as if this “Tony Carpo” person doesn’t exist at all. And if it isn’t to be found on Google, it may as well never have. And I say this as the man who easily discovered all those topless pictures of Whitesnake’s femme fatale actress Tawny Kitaen when she starred in 1984’s Grade-Z film, “The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak”, a cinematic gem that nobody I’ve ever mentioned it to, has ever admitted watching or owning a DVD copy of. And for the life of me, I can’t imagine why that is.
Oh wait. Never mind. It’s coming back to me now.

The ironic hypocrisy inherent here is that the very same “American Patriots” who slur their numerous detractors as “Soy Boys”, “Cucks”, and rally around the battle-cry of “Snowflakes”, are the ones most likely to be found jumping out of their thin-skinned hides at the mere mentioning of: legalized abortion, affirmative action, Antifa, atheists, BLM, African-Americans, Mexicans, civil rights, environmentalists, science, equality, facts, immigrants, the LGBTQ community, gun control, the Free Press, reading, Black History Month, climate change, systemic racism, green energy, misogyny, rape culture, defunding the police,  all non-Christian religions, women, the thought of Democracy working as it should, and oh yes, the Starbucks annual Christmas cup.

But to be fair to Trump’s cadre of walking sausage wallets, that list was just compiled off the top of my head, so it’s far from being complete. But since there’s always room for more items, let’s peruse this gem of hatred germinating genius that occurred over a year ago:

I’ve said it before, and I know I will have to sadly say it again, but seriously- how does this dumb b**ch of near Biblical density, not gravely injure herself every time she makes toast? Some background for this click-bait disingenuously disguised as a news story- the idea of Antifa and assorted Muslim groups working in tandem to “Police Minneapolis” wasn’t anything that they themselves openly discussed, or even privately floated among their respective members. Nope, this absurdly paranoiac masturbatory fantasy was put forth into the public eye by a 61-year-old White Republican (naturally) State Representative, who most likely, believes you could kill those of the Muslim faith simply by throwing pork rinds at them.

In June 2020, at a meeting of Minnesota’s Hubbard County Board, of which the initial focus was originally to discuss the disbursement of federal pandemic aid, Minnesota lawmaker Rep. Steve Green (R) allegedly in reaction to the raised question of whether there was an alternative public safety plan, was quoted by the Park Rapids Enterprise as saying that Antifa and Muslim organizations planned to “police Minneapolis under Muslim rule,”, as well as “What you’re looking at, in my humble opinion, is communism moving into Minneapolis and St. Paul,”  and that the state’s Democratic attorney general would like to “close down all of northern Minnesota.”

The vileness of these farcical statements was fomented by dialogue regarding the defunding of police after the murder of George Floyd, who died while in police custody, due to an officer placing his knee on his neck, despite Floyd already being handcuffed, and posing no obvious threat. Green went on to claim (falsely) that specific representatives had drafted a bill that would impose eminent domain on every business destroyed during the Floyd protests, and would “only sell back to people under conditions” imposed by the city.

Granted, while these comments from one of the dullest of the tools in Minnesota’s metaphorical workshop are as ignorantly uninformed as f**k, even I have to begrudgingly admit, I would watch the hell out of the action-adventure movie starring Rami Malek that they would eventually make out of the novelization of it. Sure, I find it pathetically sad that Mary and her ilk are this fearful of everything around them that isn’t based in WASP ideology, but I also have to appreciate how entertaining it will be when Mary finally cracks-up, and starts seeing Antifa and BLM hiding in her underwear drawer. At that point kids, we might have to take away her car keys, and anything even remotely close to falling under the definition of “stabby”.

Heading into the Home stretch, we finally come to the one thing that gives Mary’s life purpose. Is it her sense of religious faith? No, it is not. Is it her love for her family and friends? Wrong again, I’m afraid. Certainly, it must be her intent to make the world a far kinder and better place than it is now. Given her need to continuously reinforce her paranoia and distrust of the World of the Real, I’d opine it is not. Failing all that, I seriously have no idea what it could possibly be, unless I put up several disparaging theories for dissection.

So, to come to some form of conclusive agreement, let’s tick the boxes off the “what is essential to a conservative’s life” checklist, shall we? Paranoia? Check. Unfounded conspiracy theories? Check. Racist views and opinions? Check. Unbridled self-righteousness? Check. Slavishly blind and unquestionable devotion to a corruptly treasonous demagogue who wouldn’t condescend to pi**on his followers if they were on fire, and who encouraged them to commit an abominable act of Sedition? Motherf**kin’ check, and mate.

Like the majority of Trump’s bloviating base, Mary swallows without question, whatever the new GQP cabal decrees as fact for its faithful. To note, this includes the following: Democrats murder newly-born babies, are in league with China, masks are a form of societal control, and not a health  measure, Dems run the machinery of the Deep State, the 2020 election was “stolen”, Joe Biden is the real sexual predator, not the self-confessed mango man-child who was caught on a hot mic bragging about it, and while Hillary still needs to go to prison for life for a series of bogus charges she was eventually acquitted of, Trump, who attempted to overthrow Democracy, should not only not charged for his act of death-penalty-worthy sedition, he should also be allowed to run for the office whose values and integrity he so willingly defiled, once again in 2024.

It’s a shame I couldn’t find an ethical way to monetize this much stupid, because if I had, I’m fairly confident I’d literally die as a Trillionaire, given the well of twattery existent within the USA right now. Folie à deux (French for “madness for two”), also known respectively, as either shared psychosis, or shared delusional disorder (SDD), is a psychiatric syndrome in which symptoms of a delusional belief, and sometimes hallucinations, are transmitted from one individual to another. And quite honestly, I cannot think of a better descriptive for what has occurred under Trump’s reign of error, and what puzzlingly, still continues, to this present moment in time.  

As to be expected, and as previously mentioned, conspiracies theories are a cornerstone of this syndrome, and Mary apparently, believes in all that she can post. Take this fine example, for instance:

Not only is this a prime example of selective gaslighting, it’s also transparently obvious that it is designed to be such. So, to clear the air as it were, I’ll correct the blatant misinformation here, one lie at a time, in order of its appearance:

Mary: “CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?”

AB: If it was posted on your page, Mary? It’s probably best not to, That is, if I still want my friends, family, and total strangers, not to think that I’m a goddamn idiot.

Mary: “WE GOT AWAY WITH URANIUM ONE…”
AB: Yet another unfounded conspiracy theory hoping to tar and feather Hillary Clinton, it alleges that she single-handedly officiated the sale of American uranium to Russia, in exchange for a large donation to the Clinton Foundation. Unfortunately for the Repubutards pushing this retreaded rhetoric, nobody “got “away” with anything, because no crime on any level was committed. Even Fox News’s Shep Smith has openly debunked this fairy tale, based on the easily obtained evidence that key details were cherry-picked, in order to lend plausibility to the false construct that Clinton gave Russia a sizeable percentage of America’s uranium stores.

When pressed for proof of said “conspiracy” Rep. Louie “Goober” Gohmert (R-TX), of whom it might be charitably described as possessing a family tree that resembles a wreath, showed us all just how insane the GQP has allowed itself to become, when he happily offered this flow chart to Congress as “proof” of an insidiousness of that which had not actually occurred at all.

Jesus Freaking Christ. This resembles either the plot-lines of the last two X-Men movies, but with far less grounded reality, or my sex life during my mid-twenties with dead-on accuracy. Here’s the simplest run-down of what actually happened, free of the moorings of Republican lunacy:

Russia, using the conduit of its State-owned concern Rosatom, purchased the Canadian-held company Uranium One, which at the time, controlled 20% of the US’s volume for producing Uranium. The sale was approved by numerous governmental entities, including Utah’s Nuclear regulator, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), which is “an interagency committee authorized to review certain transactions involving foreign investment in the United States and certain real estate transactions by foreign persons, in order to determine the effect of such transactions on the national security of the United States.

And with all due respect, one person, no matter who, is going to have the sway required to influence an amalgamation of such a consortium. Not to mention, that in her role as Secretary of State, while she was responsible for heading an agency involved in the approval process, in the end, Clinton had very little input as to the final decision. The reality being, that in all likelihood, it was a lower-level subordinate overseeing the particulars of the final verdict.

And as to the specifics of the alleged to be controversial donation to the Clinton Foundation, the patron most responsible, the Canadian businessman, mining financier and global philanthropist, Frank Giustra, saw no benefit from said sale, having sold his investment in Uranium One THREE YEARS before the finalized agreement, and more than a year before Clinton was even appointed to serve as Secretary of State. And all of this information by the way, took me less than six minutes to research.

A time-span I might note, which is probably five minutes and fifty-nine seconds longer than Mary needed to obediently believe it.

Mary: “BENGHAZI…”
AB: Both Clinton and the White House were cleared in relation to the unsupported charges, and by the HOUSE REPUBLICANS, no less. I’m sure Mary in all honesty, forgot about that minor little detail. And one more thing? If you cared about the four Americans murdered in Benghazi where no evidence of a definable crime has ever been discovered, but share no concerns regarding the five who died during the Capitol riot, where evidence of multiple crimes was being live-streamed over multiple media platforms, then please take your hypocrisy, and shove it sideways, ASAP.

Mary: “SOLYNDRA…”
AB: On the surface, the story is this:  Solyndra was a manufacturer of thin film solar cells based in Fremont, California. Initially, the company was lauded for its unique technological approach, which led to the company securing a $535 million loan through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which is intended to provide loan guarantee authority geared towards building the economic base for green energy development. However, foundational cracks began to form when it was later discovered during a subsequent governmental investigation that Solyndra had engaged in a “pattern of false and misleading assertions”, in which the company asserted during the loan approval process, that its sales were quite strong, despite the fact that they were not.

The company was forced to file for bankruptcy two years later, when due to the unforeseen occurrence of silicon prices dropping, it found itself in the unenviable position of being unable to successfully compete with other companies who were manufacturing their solar panels out of the now far cheaper raw material. The fallout whereas the Obama administration happens to be concerned, is that when warned that financial disaster might lie ahead, the administration persisted unwaveringly in voicing its support for Solyndra.

After the failure of Solyndra, an official report was released, determining that; “Employees acknowledged that they felt tremendous pressure, in general, to process loan guarantee applications They suggested the pressure was based on the significant interest in the program from Department leadership, the Administration, Congress, and the applicants.”

If anything, this series of events reads more like an administration wanting to get an initiative launched in good faith, and due to both the high-stake political consequences if it failed to do so, and quite clearly placing said faith in the wrong people, tried to run the ball far past the point it should have when all started going pear-shaped. When I look at it, it’s not too dissimilar to how I once truly believed, nay advocated, that Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was going to be the summer blockbuster of 2008- this, before I sadly discovered that Spielberg had phoned it in from ET’s home world. The only difference being that my mistake cost me fifteen bucks, and not the going rate for settling defamation lawsuits by Dominion voting machines.

Mary: “NSA SPYING…”
AB: Actually, I think the USA spying on its own citizens is bogus too, so I’m right there with you Mary, I will however, add one caveat, though- the program was launched in 2007, under the… wait for it, BUSH administration, so once again, you can thank Republicans for taking yet another bite out of the ol” Constitution in regards to our personal freedoms.

Mary: “FAST AND FURIOUS…”

AB: Once again, not entirely accurate, Mary of MAGAdumb. A program comparable to Fast and Furious was spearheaded by the Bush administration in 2006 and 2007. Called Operation Wide Receiver, its mission was to track sales of weapons that were deemed “suspicious”. It did this by permitting said sales to advance, even when there was probable cause to believe the transactions were illegal in their scope. The ATF term for this, is referred to as “gun walking.” Both programs, which were overseen by the Phoenix Field Division of the ATF, were criticized for their “risk to public safety was immediately evident in both investigations,” as determined in a report by the inspector general. So to say that Obama’s program was something that “they” got away with, while ignoring its Republican genesis, is at best, fairly disingenuous.

Mary: “IRS TARGETING…”
AB: This debunked conspiracy theory stems from the revelation that in 2013, conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status which had “tea party” or “patriots” in their name, had been subjected to above average examination regarding the exclusions they were attempting to obtain. Despite the charges Conservatives leveled claiming that a double standard in regards to Progressive groups applying for the same existed, the allegations turned out to be unfounded in the end, as The Treasury inspector general for tax administration, or TIGTA, soon discovered.

Compiling a report at the request of a bipartisan group pf senators, TIGTA found that the IRS had targeted not only conservative groups, but numerous liberal groups as well, that just so happened to have “progressive” in their names. “The far right has been beating a drum for years now that there was a partisan attack on them,” stated Democratic Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, who was one pf the aforementioned bipartisan coalition, He added that the new report shows “that’s just not true.” Once again, Truth gets sacrificed to the Great God of Conservative Victimhood, and our Mary is more than happy to spread the Gospel according to Liars.

Mary: “CASH TO IRAN…”
AB: This narrative, comprised of a fever-dream fueled by Adderall addiction, claims that with the complicit assistance of Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, Barack Obama give an “enemy of the U.S.” (Iran) $150 billion in cash. As with most Republican-emanating “scandals”, this fanciful tale falls flat once light is shone upon it, as in truth, Iran was never given a $150 billion liquid cash payment. As an alternative, billions of dollars’ worth of Iranian assets were unfrozen as a result of Iran agreeing to the terms of a nuclear agreement, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

In essence, Iran gained access to assets that were already theirs, and which had been “frozen” in various financial institutions around the world, due to sanctions levied in an effort to place restraints upon Iran’s nuclear program So, to sum up: the claim that Iran received $150 billion in cash is patently untrue, and what they did obtain, was not financed by the taxpayers of America, either. And as an aside, the $150 billion figure bandied about was no more than an estimate at best. However, in a brain-dead move born of petulance and ignorance, so-called President Trump announced on May 8th of 2018, that he was pulling the U.S. out of the nuclear deal with Iran, which had been in the works over the course of two years, which effectively ended American oversight of the Iran’s reasonably feared nuclear development.

But sure Mary… blame the Democrats.

Mary: “GIVING NUKES TO NORTH KOREA…”
AB: Man, Republicans should really start thinking about writing serialized fiction, since they do it so much. Granted, their plot-lines are unbelievable, but remember boys and girls, this is also the country that supported the production of no less than five “Twilight” movies, so anything is possible, I guess. So, what are America’s most embarrassing relatives claiming happened this time? Well, it’s a doozy, as supposedly, in 1994, Bill Clinton gave North Korea (NK) $5 billion, along with two nuclear reactors, fundamentally giving them the capability to produce and stockpile, their own nuclear arsenal.

Do I really have to tell you at this point, this latest outrage is as fake as Ted Cruz’s manhood?
I do? Sigh… fine. I’ll do it. But I’m going to be really cranky about it as I do.

Surprisingly, here is a grain of truth at the heart of this debunked dipsh**tery, that being, Clinton did broker a deal with North Korea, as the country was building a dispensation facility to produce possibly weapons-grade plutonium.  A goal it reached after processing spent fuel, that it had gleaned from a defunct reactor built while Clinton was governor of Arkansas. Complicating the issue was the fact that North Korea had banned international inspections in its country in 1993, after issuing a decree that it would be pulling out of an international agreement, known as the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, of which, NK had been part of since 1985.

In October of 1994, Clinton settled on a deal with Kim Jong Il, who assumed leadership of NK, upon the death of hos father, Kim Il Sun, earlier in July. The terms of the deal were that the United States would help the country build two so-called “light-water” nuclear reactors, solely for the peaceful purpose of assisting NK’s energy demand. In order for the deal to be successfully enacted, NK would have to cease operation of its then-current reactor, stop ongoing construction of two other dubious reactors they said were to provide energy, halt its plans to produce nuclear weapons, submit to international inspections, and in an extremely crucial caveat, NK would have to voluntarily surrender its cache of spent nuclear fuel, once the new reactors were constructed.

In theory, the light-water reactors would make it harder for NK to produce weapons-grade material. The cost of said reactors, was estimated to be around 4B, and would be financed by an international coalition comprised of South Korea, Japan, and possibly Germany, Russia and the United States. This accord, which did not require congressional approval, was denoted as the Agreed Framework. At the time, Clinton hailed it as a conduit, for the easing of in-place sanctions and the opening of diplomatic agreement:

“This agreement will help achieve a longstanding and vital American objective- an end to the threat of nuclear proliferation on the Korean Peninsula,”

However, after George W. Bus was sworn in, the deal started falling to pieces. The US ceased its deliveries of fuel, as NK openly protested that the agreed upon reactors had never been built in the first place. And after the tragic events of September 11th unfolded, it became obvious that the metaphorical center would not hold, as US diplomacy found itself redirected.

Relations became even more provocatively strained between the two countries, after NK was labeled as one of three countries noted in Bush’s 2002 State of the Union Speech as an “Axis of Evil”. In reaction, NK opted out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, eventually conducting its first nuclear test in 2006, which by all accounts, may have spectacularly failed, by the grace of mythical God. In conclusion, Clinton did not “give” NK nukes, although in hindsight, his optimism that they would willingly honor an agreement requiring them to stand down their relentless march toward being a key nuclear power, ow seems incredibly naïve.

Mary: “GIVING NUKES TO IRAN…”
AB: Once again, Mary is wrong and at this point-,just really needs to have her internet access taken away, just as she should be, and that, right soon. Preferably to the place that I mentioned earlier, that could provide her a forced medicated berth in a private and secured bouncy castle room. Unlike NK, Iran never had nuclear weapons, as the 2015 nuclear accord it had entered into  with the United States and several other countries, had severely limited its attempts to secure a seat at the nuclear players table.

The deal, brokered by the Obama administration, also required that Iran cease its attempts to enrich its stores of uranium, along with a forced redesign of a reactor under construction that had the potential to aid in nuclear weapon production. In addition to these immutable conditions, Iran would relinquish 14K of its known 20k centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium, and vowed that future uranium enrichment would not be utilized for weapon development for at least a decade. If Iran broke any of these promises. It would be faced with swift retribution on the form of international sanctions if it dared test these limitations.

So no, Mary… we, as in the Obama administration, did not “give them nukes”.  But thanks to the US pulling out of the nuclear deal with Iran, we lost the ability to hold their feet to the fire as needed, so we may just as well have in the end. However, that flaw in leadership is wholly on your mango man-child, and not Obama, no matter how much you’d like it to be.

Mary: “RIGGING A PRIMARY…”
AB: 64 court case in a row lost confirmed that was no credible evidence of voter fraud. Multiple recounts in contested states validated the election results. The Electoral College ratified it. Our Congress, despite an attempted coup, certified it. In short- HE F**KING LOST, And as you people were so fond of saying:

“F**k your feelings, Snowflake. Deal with it.”

Mary: ”THE EMAIL SCANDAL…”
AB: Considering Trump and the daughter that he lusts after, Ivanka, both committed the same breach of protocol numerous times without consequence, I’ll just ignore this topic altogether, as I see no need to beat a dead horse into dust, as the GQP is apt to do. But I will point out that Hillary ay least, had the stones to face Congress for 11 hours, whereas Trump can only face his critics if he’s twittering behind his unsecured phone.

Mary: “SPYING ON TRUMP…”
AB:I can’t even begin to imagine what it must be like to live in a world so fearful and alien to the human experience, that one would feel the need to manifest your paranoia into unsubstantiated charges of being unjustly persecuted by the entities of formless shadows. Herr Twitler by way of example,  was quite fond of falsely claiming that his predecessor, President Barack Obama,  had ordered the FBI to illegally “spy” on Donald Trump’s campaign to win the presidency in 2016.

As usual, the facts centered around this claim have been selectively cherry-picked under the glow of a deliberate gaslight, in order for Trump to market his mendacious martyrdom to his ignorant mass of morons, such as Mary. The truth however, may be far more disturbing, given the events of January 6th, and Trump’s unwillingness to challenge Russia or its leadership on any level, notwithstanding the credible evidence of attempts to influence our elections, and placing bounties on our soldier’s heads.

The covert surveillance, which was cleared by the courts, centered on a former Trump adviser named Carter Page, after the FBI became interested in the Trump campaign’s way-too-cozy relationship with Russian operatives, which, if one was forced to be diplomatic- were sketchy at best, And if you need proof of this, just recall Don Jr, changing his story multiple times, in regard to his meetings with prominent Russians, one of whom it was eventually revealed, was indeed, a KGB operative. Nothing to see here folks, right?

Never mind the fact that his two cosplaying Beavis and Butthead sons gave media interviews where they talked openly about how much money they received from Russian banks, or the fact that Trump himself once stated in 2013 on the Larry King show that he thought that Putin had done “a really great job outsmarting our country”. Then there was also this particular gem in reference to the dictator that our spray-tanned boiled ham wishes he could be: “Russia will have much greater respect for our country when I am leading it than when other people have led it,”

The only thing Putin has ever respected about Donald Trump is his ability to lick the boots of dictators, and his alleged fondness for underage girls, and that’s it. But remember- Donnie is the real victim of unwarranted persecution here, as always. However, as to where his narcissistic narrative is concerned, his claims, like most of what he says, don’t hold up under scrutiny. There is zero evidence showing that Obama abused his authority, or directed how the FBI observed the machinations of the Trump campaign,

So, once again Mary? Please shut the f**k up, because you’re a goddamn cultist, and the depth of your stupidity, is seemingly bottomless:

AB: Damn. That’s a serious threat… or it would be if it were even remotely close to being f**king true, which it is not, One day, I’m going to introduce my good friend Mary to this internet resource called “Google”, and pray that they hookup for good, as it would be nice if she could manage to go five whole minutes without embarrassing herself.

The first clue that this is false, is the fact that that despite being having the date when the alleged quote was uttered, there is no further context regarding as to where Harris supposedly stated it in the first place. A deep-dive of Google reveals that the “quote” originated from a sardonic website that goes by the moniker, bustatroll.org., and was mentioned in a perceptibly satirical article titled “Kamala Harris: ‘After We Impeach, We Round Up the Trump Supporters’” that had been posted on their site.  I’d like to point out that this is not the first time Mary has blindly posted obvious satire on her page, [as I noted during the “fake news” section of this blog] and Odin knows, given her prideful ignorance, it won’t be the last.
AB: I’m highly suspicious pf this statement, given my belief that if Mary has a personal library, it’s comprised mostly of flash cards and pop-up books. And what’s with the phonetic spelling of “de struct tion” as if you’re *Latka Gravis? I know understanding reality is beyond your grasp, but English is literally your Mother-tongue, so what the hell? And while the CCP reference is ironic, given Trump’s track record of allegiance to China, it’s also laughably hypocritical in the end, at best. But you are definitely right on the money (this time) about there being a lot of uneducated people. It’s just so sadly hilarious that you unknowingly happen to be one of them.
*[Latka Gravas is a fictional sweet-natured and lovable-but-goofy mechanic on the TV sitcom Taxi, and was portrayed by the late Andy Kaufman.]
AB: Hell yeah, they did! And so did a variety of other social media platforms as well. Bizarrely, a wide swath of people don’t generally like it when you openly betray your own country, and then advocate for others to do so as well, especially when you’re the so-called leader of it to begin with. Weird, that. But don’t you fret, you’ll always have the memories of all those Nuremberg-style rallies to sustain you through those dark days ahead as  your seditious movement becomes even more politically irrelevant.

AB: Yeah. Nobody who’s sense of Patriotism still works correctly, honestly gives a f**k what you think about the prosecution of a traitor, considering that you and your ilk should be sitting in the dock next to him, as complicit enablers. And in a truly just world… you would be. And who truly knows? Maybe you still will.

Well, the question this poses is one hell of a metaphorical Gordian Knot, isn’t it? Who to trust in relation to the suggestion that the United States Military intervene with the electoral process taking place within a democratic society, is most definitely one heck of a pickled Pandora’s Box, let me tell you. Should I go with the men of honor, who between them, have decades of hard-won experience and overly-honed critical thinking skills, or should I trust the bats**t crazy judgement of a mango-tinted man-child who thinks windmill noise causes cancer, stares directly into a solar eclipse, and honestly believes that he couldn’t have lost the election, because the voices in his head told him so? 

I honestly have no idea who I should listen to here, but my gut tells me that maybe I should go with the actual military commanders, instead of the guy who consistently tweets that he could be one, from atop a gilded toilet. And as an aside, I’d also point out that as a democratic and free Nation, such an action is more reminiscent of a Banana Republic, due to its blatant illegality and all, than America itself. Which is probably why Mary’s cool with it, being an ardent supporter of seditious leaders and all. But only of course, if her guy is the one that gets the prime slot.

Can you all excuse me for a moment? (Turns off laptop, looks around, takes deep breath, and… wahahahahhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! Turns laptop back on.)

Sorry, I needed that. So, let me get this straight- the guy who claims the Bible is his “favorite book”, yet can’t quote one single thing from it, who never goes to church, unless he can pose outside a burned-down one while holding its owners’ manual, that he’s never read, and who practices misogyny, bigotry, narcissism, sexual assault, sloth, greed, pettiness, lust, wrath, gluttony, and envy as he consistently bears false witness, after raw-dogging a porn star as he cheats on wife number three, and who infamously, once said that he doesn’t regret his decision not to ask God for forgiveness for his sins, because, and I quote the penitent man himself:

“I have great relationship with God. I have great relationship with the Evangelicals, I like to be good. I don’t like to have to ask for forgiveness. And I am good. I don’t do a lot of things that are bad. I try to do nothing that is bad.”

And this arrogant son-of-a-bitch who’s breaks almost every one of the Ten Commandments on an hourly basis, is now “listening” to the one true God?


Now, this is just sad.
Normally, I’m all for not losing friends over politics, as I have several of them who are quite entrenched in non-crazy conservative land, (Yes, such a place still exists) but even I will draw the line when I start noticing that their casual wardrobe contains far too many pairs of gasoline-scented khakis, that they always seem to be carrying way more tiki-torches in their car, than is required for an impromptu parking-lot luau, and if they keep complaining about how the “Juden” run everything? That’s definitely the time for them to go, post haste.

But in Mary’s case, I get the feeling that the act of culling her friends list is almost a process independent of her, as there’s no way this noxious nitwit has ever had friends who are on the right side of Humanity, if not History, right from the get-go. However, the fact that she willingly retains  one friend who’s named themselves “Eddiespagetti Truthranger” is, in my humble opinion, definitely worth the price of her spending all that time inside the world’s densest combination of echo chamber and safe space.  

And as for longer being in “teaching mode”, Mary? Trust me… you’re teaching us a lot more than you could ever possibly know.

Oh, the explanation for this post is something I’ve been enjoying for quite some time now, but before I tell you why, let me tell you what its root cause is, and that would be what every noble conservative on Facebook truly hates and fears, as it is also the one thing that by itself, keeps them up at night, cowering as they curse pointlessly, bathed in the eldritch glow cast by their mom’s borrowed cellphone screen. What is this scourge that conservatives talk about, albeit in hushed tones, as they hide in the shadows of the Internet?

Fact-checkers. Or as Cult 45 calls them, “the censors”. They have several other names for them of course, but as I try to be polite, I won’t list any of them here. As is to be expected, there are the inevitable comparisons to the NAZI’s of course, but that assessment has to be called into serious question when it comes from the very same persons who believed it was perfectly acceptable to be part of a cult of personality, who fly a flag of treason next to their bastardized version of our American one. This, as they rioted futilely, in a desperate bid to commit an act of sedition:
This is not to declare outright or subtly imply, that all Trump supporters are NAZI’s, but all NAZI’s are most definitely Trump supporters. Just saying. The literal definition of fact-checking is “the act of confirming the truth of (an assertion made in speech or writing), often as part of the research or editorial process.”

For most of us, that’s a pretty cut and dried valuation, no? But for the dimwitted deplorables that comprise the fan-base that is Trump’s seditionist servile, it’s not so simple a solution. In their eyes, they’re being unjustly targeted, and outright banned from various social media platforms for telling the truth, even though I can easily attest, that I get unwillingly observed 3-day vacations just as much as they do. Even when non-partisan-based research proves that they’re wrong, they refuse to accept it at face value, and fight against the reality, as if they were being viciously mugged by random members of the Wu-Tang Clan.

And do you honestly think you can reach a person who’s so entrenched in their idiocy, that they’d feel perfectly comfortable wearing this in public, using an intellectual argument?

To be fair, it’s not really that shocking that a bunch of gullible schmucks who mainline conspiracy theories with the same casual frequency that Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx once did Heroin, would feel this way, but c’mon- how many times does somebody need to be proven wrong, before even they have to admit to themselves that maybe, just maybe, they might have picked the wrong banner to fight to the metaphorical death under?

For some people, that answer is “never”, as evidenced by the morons who are still walking around claiming that Donald Trump is legally still the President, and who openly state that no evidence presented to them, regardless of what it is, or where it comes from, will ever change that steadfast conviction of Faith in a man who possesses not a single trace of it..

Let that sink in for a minute. No matter what evidence is presented, they’ll ignore it in favor of their alternate reality, and I am sad to say, that’s not how the Universe works- if it did, I’d finally achieve that threesome with Milla Jovovich and Angeline Jolie, taking place in that Jacuzzi full of Cool Whip, that I’ve had on the drawing board and playing on an endless loop in my head, for the last 15 years.

Therein lies the rub- for all of their talk and rampant posturing regarding how much they want to be exposed to the “truth”, these cultists react to the purest examples of it, very much in the same way that Superman would react to Lois Lane, if she requested he wear a Kryptonite condom on their wedding night. The reason for this disconnection from rationality is quite easy to explain, if one looks at where most of these purposefully ignored minority of the conservative sub-set hail from, that being the purgatory that exists somewhere between their being openly mocked, and deliberately avoided, whenever possible.

Pre-Trump, these disciples of all things extremist and asinine, were easily dismissed with no more than a steely glare, an over-dramatic eye-roll, or in the most severe cases, an official complaint to one’s HR department. But come the 2016 election, the commonest of the rabble found themselves emboldened by their new champion, a man devoid of humanity, compassion, tact, intelligence and class, who espoused whatever bats**t crazy lie came into his head at the time, and they loved him for what he represented. Not fresh ideas and policies, for he had none to speak of, and not for the promise of a new era of American prosperity and influence, either.

No, what they loved, and still do I might add, are his dog-whistles, his racism, his misogyny, his disdain for intelligence, honor, truth, and compassion, his xenophobia, his bigotry, his sense of faux Christianity, his gas-lighting, and his blatantly blinding hatred for the same people they hate as well, Namely, those who are better educated, more successful, open-minded, compassionate, literate, questioning, and whom actually live their Faith, not the tainted version offered up by the modern-day Conservative movement. And emboldened by such, along with his rhetoric, they came out from under their rocks, as if they were vampires emerging into an eternal night.

To their dismay however, when they did claw their way up and out, not only were they unable to go all the way with their plans to turn America into a Banana Republic version of Salem’s Lot, they found that the majority of its citizens were clad in shimmering Silver, armed with Holy-Water-loaded Supersoakers, and the halls of its most hallowed institutions had Glade garlic scented air fresheners plugged-in every five feet. Undaunted, they screamed at the night sky, only to find to their slowly dawning horror that the eternal night OAN predicted, was just a particularly dark and overcast day, and as the rays of the Sun broke through, found themselves either forced back under those very same rocks, or mewling online that Facebook was biased against the Undead. 

I’m obviously kidding of course, as we all know that these morons don’t have a clue, much less a plan, as the debacle on January 6th clearly indicated beyond a shadow of a doubt. Speaking of which, this leads into the last thing I’ll be addressing regarding Mary in this screed, the reason why her posts were/are disappearing off her page. I’m almost embarrassed to admit, that I may be partially responsible for that. Sort of. In a way. Even though, I can’t directly do anything, as I’m “blocked” from her page. Ergo, I don’t have the capability to report or alert Facebook about the numerous inaccuracies and falsehoods that are allegedly posted on her page, even if I wanted to, and trust me- I would definitely want to.

But that doesn’t stop other people from doing so, and then telling me about it, via other conduits open to me outside of the clearly defined boundaries of Facebook, and its associated social media platforms. And those very same people, other than providing me with raw source material, also keep me informed as to what they had gleefully, and rightfully, reported to FB’s fact-checkers, be they human or programmed algorithm. Granted while this amusing interaction has provided me a two-part story-arc, and more than a few chuckles at her expense, my interaction is exceedingly limited, both by comparison and Facebooks own profile protection protocols.

However, I’ve been informed, and that more than once, that my efforts in confronting other conservative nincompoops had inspired them to do the same. And the best part? If the former president-in-name-only and definite seditionist. couldn’t be held responsible for inciting a deadly riot that saw one cop murdered and four of his deplorables fully embracing Darwin’s Law, then most certainly, I can’t be held liable for other people taking it upon themselves to call cultists goddamn jackasses, as they report fraudulent postings in tandem, now can I?

So, as to the reason why your inanity is vanishing off your page Mary, I’ll hazard an educated guess or two, as the thoughts strike me. First, when you signed up for Facebook, you agreed to follow their clearly stated rules, one of those being the following: Facebook reserves (and has) the right to remove any or all posts that violate its terms, and your pre-approval regarding this process, or FB giving you prior notification, is not required. The boundary line for undertaking this action is delineated into the following categories, and if the removed postings so happen to fit within the following definitions: targeted threats of violence, personally threatening speech, such as “doxxing”, violent or offensive imagery, or what could be reasonably considered “hate speech”, along with the expected push-back against sexually explicit imagery, as well.

But as of late, there’s been a revitalized attempt to quash the spread of malicious misinformation, whether it be political, medical, or cultural, and because conservatives are seemingly the main source of such, it’s driving them absolutely insane. Keep in mind, they themselves, have stated that they don’t care what Reality says, as what matters to them is what they believe to be so, and in regards to the accuracy of what that is, they could honestly care less, as long as the ability to weaponize it, can be utilized efficiently.

And the most obvious reason for those said missing posts Mary, is quite simple- there’s a multitude of people who are happily reporting your idiocy as fast as you post it, and then, in an act comprised of pure schadenfreude, randomly sending me the captured screencaps of it. You know, because if there’s anything us Liberals enjoy more than watching you scream your bumper sticker ideology to the empty air, it’s having an unexpected laugh at your expense. And given your devotion to the seditionist who would sacrifice you in a heartbeat to save his own skin, we’re going to be laughing at you and your unamerican ilk for quite some time.

You wanted to make America great? Or at he very least, instill your twisted version of what you think American exceptionalism is? You failed. We however, started the process by kicking your president’s ass to the curb, and then we’re done disinfecting the White House, the reckoning of holding accountable every single one of you treasonous bastards begins, and that guarantee is set solidly in the Constitution of the country you failed to usurp.  

We’re going to do to you what you and Trump tried to do to our Democracy- count on it. And if I were to offer some form of cautionary warning regarding what’s about to befall your pathetically mewling movement, I’d quote the book whose teachings you guys fail to follow, and that your president uses as a prop.

From Revelation 20:11-15: “Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. The earth and the heavens fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life.

The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.”

I wonder where your name is jotted down, Mary? In its pages, it’s margins, or on the Post-it note God’s going to toss once he’s done using it as a temporary bookmark? Someday you’ll find out, I guess, as we all will. But my gut tells me that where you’re most certainly going won’t ever need to provide you with a coat, because you’re never going to experience being cold ever again.

“Here’s an easy way to figure out if you’re in a cult: If you’re wondering whether you’re in a cult, the answer is yes.” – Stephen Colbert, I Am America


The Con-versation Pt.1 (It Can’t Happen Clear)

    

“The main thing that I learned about conspiracy theory, is that conspiracy theorists believe in a conspiracy because that is more comforting. The truth of the world is that it is actually chaotic. The truth is that it is not The Illuminati, or The Jewish Banking Conspiracy, or the Gray Alien Theory. The truth is far more frightening – Nobody is in control. The world is rudderless.” – Alan Moore

Hello Blogiteers!
What a day for a dayscream, is it not?

2021 has finally arrived, and despite our national nightmare swiftly (and hopefully) coming to a close, the idiocy it spawned remains with us, and even worse- still possesses unlimited access to the internet. And while there will always be those that type out inanities at the same rate that I can eat a box of perfectly chilled Ding-Dongs, it’s still a test of personal endurance even on the best of days, when it comes to dealing with these shining examples of truly selective inbreeding.

For the sake of forwarding my POV, I won’t be addressing the level of education that some of these scurrilous schizophrenics have or have not attained, but the lack of one definitely is not always a key factor at play in regards to the paranoic conclusions that most of them draw in regards to how the world at large actually operates. Even the most intelligent among us and whom otherwise would appear normal, have willingly joined what at best, an outright cult of inanity from time to time. In order to kick off this chronicling of abject stupidity, I’ll start with a definition (or two) of today’s’ subject at hand:

A Conspiracy is defined as: The act of conspiring. An evil, unlawful, treacherous, or surreptitious plan formulated in secret by two or more persons; IE, plot. A combination of persons for a secret, unlawful, or evil purpose: He joined the conspiracy to overthrow the government. An agreement by two or more persons to commit a crime, fraud, or other wrongful act. Any concurrence in action; combination in bringing about a given result.”

A Conspiracy Theorist is defined as: “Someone who believes in a conspiracy theory (= the idea that an event or situation is the result of a secret plan made by powerful people.”

Examples of this typically erroneous belief system with their calculated odds attached, would be that the 1963 JFK assassination involved more than one gunman (75%), that a New World Order overlorded by the Illuminati / Vatican / or a Satanic cabal of pedophiles are the ones truly running the planet (30%), that there are numerous subliminal messages in advertising, music and Disney cartoons (25%), that 9-11 was an “inside job” (2%), that the hot-dog packaging to hot-dog-bun packaging ratio is an evil plot overseen by Lithuanians (100%), that UFO’s exist (12%), or that somewhere, hidden in a privately held vault, there exists an as yet unseen cut of “Highlander 2: The Quickening”, that’s actually worth watching sober, no less.
Chance of that by the way, is ZERO-f**king-percent, Sean Connery’s manliness be damned.

Granted, there has always been, and always will be, proven evidence for conspiracies that DO exist, but the very nature of a conspiracy is that it remain undetected, for if it is, it’s no longer a conspiracy so much as yet more proof as to why you should have spent the extra coin to hire a competent cabal organizer – you know, one with those solid deep-state references that FOX, OAN, and Newsmax like to bleat incessantly that only Liberals possess? You get what you pay for, and all that. Many a possibly successful crime spree has been thwarted before it even starts, by someone who out of a sense of misguided loyalty, hires their half-witted cousin to drive the getaway car, versus hiring that out-of-state pro who makes Frank Martin from the “Transporter” film series come off as no more skilled than Clark Griswold from National Lampoon’s “Family Vacation”.

Just saying.

On a side note, it turns out that according to a poll dually conducted by Nielsen and Pew Research, that FOX’s demographic is 98.9% White, 59% Male, with an average age of 69, of which, 61% possess no form of higher education. So… old, White, poorly educated, and willingly self-isolated from other sources that might challenge their erroneous ideology? Yep. I can’t for the life of me, figure out just why these very same people swallow every fascist fortune cookie that the Republican party passes out as if they were tax write-offs to corporations.

Regardless, conspiracy theories have always been good for the cheapest of free entertainment, not-so-deep drunken discussions at 3a.m., as well as efficiently, and sometimes permanently, derailing both personal reputations and political upwards movement beyond repair. And in my case, concerning what could have been my future in-laws almost two decades ago, an opportunity for them to espouse their ignorant racism under the odious guise of showing “concern” for the “troubled youth” of the inner cities. Think of any person of note or infamy, and pause to reflect upon what you “know” about them, dwelling on just how you came to acquire this vital intelligence in the first place- odds are you didn’t get it from any source that can boast a collection of Pulitzers, am I right?

I thought so.

But here’s the Damocles Sword of it all- while it’s relatively harmless fun to debate whether or not if Bigfoot, UFO’s, the Loch Ness monster, the Illuminati, and Denise Richard’s acting chops actually exist, it’s quite the other side of the coin to carry such arrogant idiocy forward in relation to approaching the world of the Real, regardless of what subject is being disseminated for the public entire. If you need solidified proof, look no further than the political propaganda that has corrupted the trust in regards to the sanctity and security of our democratic institutions, and tainted the charter of the free press within this country over the last few years.

And the reality that the damage already wrought by such may be somewhat irreversible, is truly something that should strike the chord of ice-cold fear in the heart of any rational person, both here and abroad, and not just because some basement-dwelling, Hot Pocket consuming, right-wing Proud Boy wackadoo with a number of *George Lincoln Rockwell tattoos may act upon it.
*[George Lincoln Rockwell was an American neo-Nazi, who after being discharged from the US Navy for his extremist views in 1959, founded the American Nazi Party. Among his charming attributes was the belief that the Holocaust never occurred, and that the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. was a compliant asset for (sigh) Jewish Communists who started the Civil Rights movement as a means to rule over the white community.

He slurred ed African-Americans as a “primitive, lethargic race who desired only simple pleasures and a life of irresponsibility” and supported racial segregation. On August 25, 1967 in the parking lot of an Arlington, VA laundromat, Rockwell was murdered by a former member of his own party, which just goes to show that even an inbred NAZI can get it right every now and then.]

What I mean by this, is the thought that believing in the Deep State or the New World Oder doesn’t carry much of a social impact if it’s just your local man-bunned barista who espouses it, but when that same virulence is proudly borne by an elected representative or a celebrity who has both the ear of the public and unconstrained access to all the forms of the Media? Well, at that point, the bets are off as to what harm can be fomented when that particular *Lemarchand Puzzle Box is loosed upon the pustulant pinheads of the world.

*[A Lemarchand’s Puzzle Box, first seen in the 1987 horror film Hellraiser, is a puzzle which when solved, serves as a key to accessing an interdimensional plane of existence, whosedenizens are truly demonic, and is definitely one of those things you should never try to analyze or casually play around with, no matter how smart you think you are, or how well-intended you may be.]

Just leave it where you found it, and walk the hell away. Trust me on this. And the very same should be said about anything you’re told that doesn’t come from a trusted and verifiable source, and no, an American flag avatar laden website run out of what used to be an active meth lab doesn’t count, shockingly enough. One might think that this would be glaringly obvious in this, the Golden Age of Informational Access, but as the past presidential election has just brutally shown, it is sadly not, and it’s only going to get worse.

To set the stage, let me offer up just a few quotes regarding such courtesy of the visionary sci-fi author Isaac Asimov: There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way throughout political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that “my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”

We have a new buzzword, too, for anyone who admires competence, knowledge, learning and skill, and who whishes to spread it around. People like that are called “elitists”. That’s the funniest buzzword ever invented because people who are not members of the intellectual elite don’t know what an “elitist” is, or how to pronounce the word. As soon as someone shouts “elitist” it becomes clear that he or she is a closet elitist who is feeling guilty about having gone to school.”

“I believe that every human being with a physically normal brain can learn a great deal and can be surprisingly intellectual. I believe that what we badly need is social approval of learning and social rewards for learning.”

Nailed it. With ten-foot-long mother**king spikes, no less. And typically, right through the heads of certain people who, due to their usage of aluminum foil as a means to block the mind-control rays consistently blasted at them by agents of the Deep State, have made the cover for the annual stock report of the *Reynolds Group so many times, that they’ve achieved honorary mascot status, if not the fawning respect of their fellow GOP / QAnon cult members and enablers.
*[Reynolds Group Holdings is an American packaging company that produces a variety of widths and thicknesses of aluminum foil in the U.S. under the Reynolds Wrap aluminum foil brand.]

However, this intellectually vacuous demographic of density most certainly doesn’t see their conservative idiocy campaign as being anything less than a noble beacon for those floundering in the far-too-bright, if not the painfully caustic, spotlight of Reality. But honestly, should we expect a course of sane and sober thought from a mass of morons who are literally one tiki-torch away from burning down their local Chucky Cheese, because Alex Jones, a right-wing wackadoo and  magnet for dumbf**ks, may still yet one day, tell them that’s where the government’s “weather weapons” and the chemicals that are “turning the frogs gay” are stored?

Both of those by the way are actual things that Jones has claimed exist, along with a host of other publicized assertions, such as the particularly vile one that former First Lady and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, along with several trusted associates of hers, were solely responsible for running a… (Wait for it) “demonic sex-trafficking ring” inside a local pizza shop, located in Washington, D.C. Although Jones was not responsible for this conspiracy theory, which became known far and wide as “Pizzagate”, Herr Hedgehog gave it enough publicly administered oxygen to inspire one of his devoted followers, a mental midget by the name of Edgar Maddison Welch, to enter the Comet Ping Pong Pizzeria in late 2016, armed with both a .38 handgun, and a AR-15 rifle, from which he dispensed several rounds, despite there being no evidence of observable sex-trafficking whatsoever.

Fortuitously, no one, including several children that were present, were hurt by Welch’s brain-dead act of sheerly delusional, yet entirely sober dipshittery, and he was eventually sentenced to
four years in prison. The sentence was based on not only the obvious stupidity of the act itself, but the extenuating circumstances preceding it, such as driving more than 4-1/2 hours from his residence to the restaurant, in order to liberate the nonexistent victims, akin to how Travis Bickle rescued Iris, a child prostitute in the 1976 film classic, Taxi Driver. It requires noting that despite the warnings of others not to proceed with his pinheaded plan, Welch regardless set it in motion, rather than taking the logical step of contacting qualified law enforcement instead with his unfounded concerns.

Jones for his part, and most likely as a means to distance himself from what could have easily turned into a mass shooting, issued a videotaped statement via his website known as InfoWars, which to many, came off less as a heartfelt declaration, than it was a palpable non-apology masquerading as such. To bolster this opinion of mine, I present to you the full transcript that Jones posted not-so-coincidentally, on the very same day that Welch was convicted

(VIDEO BEGINS)

JONES: “Alex Jones here with an important note to our viewing, listening, and reading audiences. I’m going to read to you from a statement that is also posted to Infowars.com that I wrote yesterday.

    Last fall, before the presidential election, a large number of media outlets began reporting on allegations arising from emails released by WikiLeaks that appeared to come from John Podesta, who served President Clinton and Obama and was the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

    Dozens of those stories and articles raised or discussed theories that some of Podesta’s emails contained code words for human trafficking and/or pedophilia. Stories also included allegations connecting members of the Democratic Party with a number of restaurants allegedly involved with a child sex ring. These stories were cited and discussed in social media and went viral on the internet.

    One of the persons mentioned in many of the stories in the media was a Washington, D.C., restaurant owner named James Alefantis, and his pizza restaurant Comet Ping Pong. It is fair to say that Mr. Alefantis is a prominent individual who has been mentioned as a power player in Washington. Mr. Alefantis and his restaurant were mentioned in many stories published by a lot of different outlets. Mr. Alefantis was quoted in many subsequent stories, and he denied any involvement in such reported child sex rings. These denials were reported in the national media and many other outlets and news websites.

    The volume of stories was substantial, generating national headlines and came to be known across the country as “Pizzagate.” We at Infowars became part of that national discussion. We broadcast commentary about the allegations and the theory that the emails contained code words. We raised questions about information in Mr. Podesta’s emails and the Comet Ping Pong restaurant. We believed at the time that further investigation was necessary. In December of 2016, we disassociated ourselves from the “Pizzagate” claims and theories, a position we reiterated last month after being contacted by Mr. Alefantis.

    In late February of 2017, we received a letter from Mr. Alefantis asking that we retract certain statements that he says were made in seven of our broadcasts between the last week of November and the first week of December in 2016. We have attempted, through our lawyers, to contact Mr. Alefantis to discuss with him what sort of statement he would like to see made.

    In our commentary about what had become known as Pizzagate, I made comments about Mr. Alefantis that in hindsight I regret, and for which I apologize to him. We were participating in a discussion that was being written about by scores of media outlets, in one of the most hotly contested and disputed political environments our country has ever seen. We relied on third-party accounts of alleged activities and conduct at the restaurant. We also relied on accounts of reporters who are no longer with us. This was an ever-evolving story, which had a huge amount of commentary about it across many, many media outlets.

    As I have said before, what became a heightened focus on Mr. Alefantis and Comet Ping Pong by many media outlets was not appropriate. To my knowledge today, neither Mr. Alefantis, nor his restaurant Comet Ping Pong, were involved in any human trafficking as was part of the theories about Pizzagate that were being written about in the media outlets and which we commented upon.

    I want our viewers and listeners to know that we regret any negative impact our commentaries may have had on Mr. Alefantis, Comet Ping Pong, or its employees. We apologize to the extent our commentaries could be considered as negative statements about Mr. Alefantis or Comet Ping Pong, and we hope that anyone else involved in commenting on Pizzagate will do the same thing.

    Here’s what we have done to clarify to the public. Months ago, we took down the majority of broadcasts and videos including ones that only passingly mentioned Pizzagate. This happened months before we were even contacted by Mr. Alefantis. Mr. Alefantis objected to portions of seven particular radio/TV broadcasts. We have taken down those seven broadcasts and we have attempted to take down any broadcasts that mentioned Mr. Alefantis or Comet Ping Pong. We have attempted to do so not just on our website but also on social media sites such as our YouTube channel. If Mr. Alefantis has any other objections, we invite him to let us know. Two reporters who used to be associated with us are no longer with us. In a recent broadcast, I invited Mr. Alefantis on our program to state what he wanted to, and I again do so here. He has given interviews to many media outlets, and he is welcome to come on our show.

    In issuing this statement, we are not admitting that Mr. Alefantis, or his restaurants, have any legal claim. We do not believe they do. But we are issuing this statement because we think it is the right thing to do. It will be no surprise to you that we will fight for children across America. But the Pizzagate narrative, as least as concerning Mr. Alefantis and Comet Ping Pong, we have subsequently determined was based upon what we now believe was an incorrect narrative. Despite the fact that we were far from the genesis of this story, it is never easy to admit when your commentaries are based on inaccurate information, but we feel like we owe it to you the listeners, viewers and supporters to make that statement, and to give an apology to you and to Mr. Alefantis, when we do.

We encourage you to hold us accountable. We improve when you do.”
(END VIDEO CLIP)

JONES: And again, ladies and gentlemen, that was — we got distracted off by MSM on this stuff in D.C. when it was all going on in New York and that’s why day one, I saw it, I saw the media, and I said, “Get off that.” And I did that because we’re not psychopaths, we actually look at what is reality and then focus on that. We don’t go like MSM with their misinfo and just cold-bloodedly spew lies, this person’s a racist, this person’s this, this person’s that. Just because it gets us ahead in what we’re doing, we’re all about integrity, and that’s why we make mistakes by covering MSM, focusing on it, and the huge debate. We will absolutely own up to it, and make right for it, as we just did.”

In other words; “Sure, we can’t actually come right out and fully accept the blame for our pushing a baseless and wholly insane fantasy as being credible to the point that somebody could have easily gotten killed for our doing so, but we’re also not going to say directly that the story itself had no merit to begin with in the very first place, despite that fact being obvious to anyone who hasn’t made huffing paint more of a career path, and less of a hobby.

Despite the fact that multiple media outlets had broadcast denials, due to the story itself being batshit crazy, we who work tirelessly at the same place that maintained  that the massacre at Sandy Hook was a “False Flag” operation, weren’t going to be dissuaded from whipping up our base into a mindless frenzy just because it wasn’t true. Granted, even now, we publicly posture that we did nothing wrong, because “we’re not psychopaths”, despite all recorded evidence to the contrary, and besides- it’s all the other media outlets who are really at fault here, don’t you know?

Now, here’s a story about gay frogs operating underground rave parties so that they can turn your newborn baby into a communist socialist who will join Antififa, and murder you as you sleep.” 

Notwithstanding the dubious sincerity of this piously shallow act of self-flagellation, his actions before (and since) the incident are really what should be put under the societal microscope, in order to determine the consequences for such future irresponsibility. This critical focus should be applied not only to him, but to the others of his ilk as well. This wasn’t a case of differing personal opinions; this was an act of targeted harassment, crafted solely to further an inane political agenda, and such careless actions should warrant an equitable punishment for doing so, no matter what mealy-mouthed rationalizations are eventually dispensed.

Notwithstanding this opinion, Jones is not the only cog of conservative maladjustment powering the far-larger juggernaut of mass delusion, a societal aberration that started sweeping across this country, just about the same time the populace within it dared to place an African-American in the formally all-White House as their nation’s duly elected leader, One cannot be a cult leader, even albeit a cult of morons, without the willing culpability of said morons after all, and when it comes to tapping the stores of such in this country, it’s no surprise that Jones found the metaphorical shelves to be literally overstocked.

The reservoir that I’m alluding to, is the current so-called conservative movement currently boiling over the edges of America’s formerly stalwart melting pot, and the singular reason why I label it as “so-called”, is because it has as much in common with the true roots of conservatism as Melania Trump has with the comparisons to Jackie O, or that I do with the art of diplomacy. In essence and my personal opinion, I’m not known for my tact, Melanoma’s a mail-order call-girl, and when it comes to the success of the modern-day Republicans’ abominable point of view infecting my fellow Americans, I’m thinking that somewhere in the fiery bowels of Hell, even Hitler himself has to be dually jealous and impressed for the toxicity of its message becoming interwoven into what was once considered the impenetrable fabric of our nations’ humanity and normalcy.

How we went from the era of trickle-down Reaganomics to being reluctant bit-players in a 28 Days Later cosplay, isn’t that hard to dissect, if one looks at both the annals of History and the A-holes of histrionics currently amassed as the Trump base. We’ve seen this culture of diseased thought before. We’ll see it again. And that, only because a far-too-large chunk of Americans have both the memory and intellectual capacity of a goldfish speed-balling paint thinner. And most certainly, they not only possess all the anger of a middle-aged “Karen” discovering that African-Americans have the same right to openly shop at a Sprouts just like she does, but that they’re the ones who bought the very last bottle of Kombucha as well.

Oh, the horror these desperately despicable deplorables have to face almost every day. It’s truly a miracle that they’re able to get up, put on their white hooded ensemble, and drive their Trump-flag-festooned trucks to his latest ego Viagra dispensation, masquerading as a political super-spreader rally. Bravery beyond compare, let me tell you. As is to be expected, when one dares pass comment on the inanity of these lemmings of lunacy, the very same people who decry what they have come to see as a rapidly escalating anti-cancel culture, hypocritically become… well, full-on cancel-culture warriors themselves, using the anonymity of the internet in a blatant attempt to harass, threaten, and intimidate, the targets of their ire into a state of compliant silence,

You know. Just like the Founding Fathers would do, if they were ignorant dumbf**ks prone to believing in the worst distillation of bats**t craziness?

Speaking of which, I’d like to add yet another local loon log that I discovered out here in my neck of the woods, onto the flaming pyre of my innate criticism, but before I get around to doing just that, I’d like to first share with you some other unique individuals, who consistently prove just exactly why we as a nation, need to so adequately, fund both the public educational system, if not unconstrained access to birth control. And once again, this cornucopia of callowness is gleaned wholesale off the ol’ internet, which as time passes, seems less than a way to connect with your fellow humans, and more of a moral yardstick as to whom you should actively avoid meeting now, or in the future. This is mainly due to the fact that the majority of them possess a grip on actual Reality akin to the one you and I might have when attempting to body-hug a school of agitated Hagfish.

As it’s already fairly obvious, I won’t bore you with how much time a week I spend traipsing on through the murky Darklands of the World Wide Web, but I’d also like to note that I’m not as immersed up to my neck in it as you might think, either. My approach to such is akin to that of a harried soccer mom at a Walmart after work- I get in, get what I need, and don’t waste time getting distracted by the human freak show that attempts to pass itself off as today’s new normal. But I have to admit that sometimes… even I have to slow down and stare slack-jawed, at the human train-wreck that has devolved into the embodiment of the modern-day GOP.

First, there’s the train car full of those that cannot spell, utilize grammar properly, or openly express their muddled process of thought without pinning the CAPS key to the floor, as if it were a drunken prom queen unwillingly trapped in the back seat of the star quarterback’s car:

Truly rational people all, am I right? I tells ya’, nothing plucks at my heartstrings quite so hard as seeing just what unbridled patriotism becomes when sifted through the warped filter that is the right-wing brain trust, let me tell you. But these fine examples of what happens when the public school system fails, also have one further leg up over us godless, socialism-loving, science-believing, book-owning, elitist Libtards, and it is this: apparently, they’re also “nicer” than us. I know. It came as a shock to me as well, but since I did read it on the internet, it must be true, right? In fact, here is such a statement, sans any form of evidence of course, that says it’s so:

Proof enough for me, as well as you, I’m sure. No. It really isn’t, you say? Well then. Let me in my limited capacity as your host, serve up even more shining examples of conservative tolerance that we as the Radical Left, could learn a thing or two from:

Ah… such warmth. Such intellectualism. Such Humanity. Such civility, and dare I say it, so much “niceness”. Such an excellent example of why one’s ability to access the internet should come with a required IQ test to ascertain if theirs exceeds that of a barely sentient rice cake. Now, while this may seem as a harsh overreach regarding knee-capping the burgeoning issue of handcrafted misinformation tainting the national consciousness, it’s worth a shot, if only to protect what little may remain of the collective soul of our certainly gravely wounded Republic. Now to be fair, lying and politics are long intertwined bedfellows with solid boundaries cementing their mutual friends with benefits relationship, and there’s no room for playing Devil’s advocate in relation to this inarguable fact.

It would be hypocritical of me to assert that only the GOP has sole franchise rights when it comes to the art of discordant dissembling, but I’d also opine that when it comes to testing the elasticity limit surrounding said activity, Republicans as a rule, have been caught with their hands in the metaphorical cookie jar so often, it’s truly stunning that the entire Party aren’t Type-1 diabetics at this point. However, even given this prior track record of disingenuousness, the last four years’ volume of their red-meat dog-whistling has been nothing short of awe-inspiring, if not thoroughly ear-shattering.

In short, we as a nation and as it’s citizenry, have been subjected to, either from the GOP, or Trump himself, the following sackcloth-and-air fabrications:

Trump won the most Electoral College votes since Ronald Reagan, the size of the inauguration crowd was the largest in American history, that “thousands” of people were bused across state lines to vote in 2016, that he faced “a historic delay” to get all of his cabinet nominees confirmed,that the murder rate was the highest it had ever been in 45 years,that terrorist attacks across Europe were “not even being reported”, that Kuwait had issued a visa ban on several Muslim-majority countries after his immigration order,that two people were shot and killed during Obama’s farewell speech, numerous (and ongoing) lies about voter fraud, that he had not paid off adult film star Stormy Daniels, that he would divulge his taxes, that Mexico would willingly pay for his fantasy border wall, that climate change didn’t exist, that he alone would bring jobs “back” to America, and that there were roving immigrant caravans hell-bent on entering the US,

There was also amusingly, several moments of unbound delusions, where Trump asserted that “nobody knows” more about social media / healthcare / infrastructure / technology / cybersecurity / campaign finance / TV ratings / ISIS / domestic and foreign policy / trade / green renewable energy / taxes / money / construction / unmanned drones / and for some strange reason, Democratic Senator Cory Booker, than he did.

This pile of already flaming-at-the-time garbage, was of course, just a small part of a previously immense conflagration that included far-worse transgressions that directly led to the possibly preventable deaths of 325K+ Americans thus far. Deaths by the way, that have only spotlighted precisely how little that the GOP and it’s beyond redemption leadership, care about the people they so facetiously swore to serve, if not protect. Two things that Trump did get right though, were his expertise with Debt and Lawsuits, of which he carelessly bragged: “I’m the king of debt. I’m great with debt. Nobody knows debt better than me.” and Who knows more about lawsuits than I do? I’m the king.”

So, I will give him those caveats at least, tone-deaf as they were.

However, the icing of incompetence atop this multi-liar cake, would have to be the blatant attempt to stage a coup d’état for the sole purpose of keeping the GOP’s death grip on judicial and legislative power, with the enablers of the Trump cult slavishly, happily and most disturbingly, openly, serving the role of his loyal ersatz *Führerbegleitkommando.
*[The elite squad comprised of Hitler’s personal bodyguards.]

Given Trump’s increasingly frantic desperation to both stay out of the NY prison cell most likely waiting for him, and the fact his fragile ego can’t handle being branded a “loser”, it’s no wonder that we find ourselves on this dark path for the first time in our 243-year-old history, and when the dust and spray tanner have settled, we need to make certain that it never happens again, come Hell or high water. But until that day finally happens, we’re going to have to listen to all of the crackpot theories and fabricated falsehoods that the GOP and its f**ked-up faithful will attempt to spread, even if the depth of their validity is as thin as a sheet of phyllo dough.

Case in point: the Hunter Biden “scandal”.

The GOP narrative: In October, the New York Post published what it claimed were copies of emails discovered on the laptop, which allegedly showed that Joe Biden, who was serving as vice president at the time of the alleged emails, and whom was a candidate at the time of their publication, had been tainted by his son’s business ventures in the country of Ukraine

John Paul MacIsaac, the owner of The Mac Shop, a computer repair shop based in Wilmington, Delaware, claimed that in April of 2019, a man who identified himself as “Hunter Biden”, brought three liquid-damaged laptops into his shop, choosing to leave only one behind for repairs, and never returned to retrieve it. Eventually, MacIsaac turned over a copy of the laptop’s hard drive to both the FBI and Brian Costello, an attorney for Rudy Giuliani, who as we all know, is Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, along with being America’s favorite mentally-cracked Uncle. Mac Isaac said he turned the hard drive over to Costello because of “fears for his safety”.

MacIsaac, who is known to be a devoted Trump supporter, has changed his story more than once in regards to what he claimed the chain of events were, ranging from how he initially got in touch with the FBI and has pushed the narrative that he duped the hard drive out of the concern that he might be murdered for “leaking information”. He has also puzzlingly claimed that he wasn’t able to positively identify who had actually dropped off the laptop, because he is “legally blind”. but said the laptop bore a sticker from the Beau Biden Foundation, named after Hunter’s late brother, the former attorney general of Delaware. In lieu of actual proof, and the incriminating sticker aside, there were two security cameras in his shop that could have aided the inquiry as to the validity of his claim, but wouldn’t you know it- the crucial footage from that specific day was automatically deleted before he realized how important it was.

Nevertheless, he still adamantly contends that the customer in his shop that day had most assuredly been Hunter Biden himself. So to recap; a legally-blind, pro-Trump supporter says that the son of the then Vice President and now President-elect, walked into his repair shop, casually dropped off a treasure trove of evidence implicating both in potentially embarrassing, if not criminal activity, without leaving so much as a quantifiable trace of his physical presence there whatsoever, and then never came back to claim it, because… reasons, I guess. And the only proof that he might have been ever there, just so happened to be deleted from existence “accidentally”.
There’s a descriptive term I’m looking for here, regarding this tale of an insidiously unethical Bogeyman of privilege that much like the “immigrant caravans” Trump once railed about, found itself to be a non-topic among
the Trump Klan (pun intended) the moment it was clear that the election was truly over. Now what could the term for this be? Wait a sec, I’ve got it… that would be “gaslighting”, which is to Trump as cocaine is to Charlie Sheen- an addiction, a lifestyle, and the means by which he keeps his bitches subservient to his every whim.

Speaking of which, here’s a posting from one of his loyal familiars, that being a modern-era Step(hanie) Fetchit, who is more than comfortable with selling out her race and gender, hoping to garner the fawning approval of a primarily White conservative base, who at best, will never regard her more than as a token “Black friend” who’s not been let in on the joke they’re openly playing on her.

The fact that she labeled this tripe “compelling” as if it was anything less than a nonsensical fever-dream, while having the gall to rehash Hunter’s now-conquered drug addiction as a parting swipe disguised as “advice”, just goes to prove that when it comes to licking her Mango Massa’s boots, she’s more than willing to swallow all the way up to Trump’s cankles.

Heads up, “Cand-ass”- you can parrot their debunked conspiracy theories, their anti-minority sentiment cloaked as political discussion, and continue to claim with a straight face that in no way, shape, or form does the pox of systematic racial discrimination exist, despite the fact that you once filed a profitable lawsuit against Stamford High School in Connecticut, alleging you were the victim of it. But your Blackstage pass is a limited access one, even if you’re totally cool with being paraded out like a minstrel show of yore, for the chance yet again, to shuck n’ jive for the very same conservatives who, if you moved in next door to them, would call the cops if you so much dared to use your backyard to host a family BBQ.
[For further evidence of Owen’s hypocrisy, check out: https://newsone.com/3848636/candace-owens-receipts-con-artist/ – it’s definitely an eye opener.]

And as for telling the “kids” not to ”smoke crack”, that’s actually good advice coming from you for once. Maybe you should pass that tidbit along to Don Jr, right after you remove your lips from the one that delineates Trump Sr’s ass from his face. Just a suggestion. But I didn’t come here for the sole purpose of calling out hypocrisy only to the powers that be, I’d also like to do it for my local contingent of cravenly chowder-heads as well, because if anything, I’m widely known for my magnanimity when it comes to keep the floors of my literary abattoir open to all those who dare show me their throat. I mean that metaphorically, of course, since it’s been a while that I’ve had the creative opportunities presented by an unused crawlspace.


Interestingly, this particular slice of bark from a family tree that allegedly resembles a wreath, has been on my radar for quite some time, but after squaring away a series of cultural and politically themed screeds, I then found myself using a hypocritically home-grown faux-Christian as a chew-toy, in order to shake some accumulated cerebral rust off the ol’ writing juggernaut. This naturally led to yet another story-arc, where I tackled a bigot stuffed so full of mendacious mayonnaise and vitriol of vanilla, that he could have easily served as the main appetizer at a Proud Boys buffet. At that point, I needed a detox of sorts, so I took a brief diversionary course into the land of Sci-Fi television, and got back on course with an observational essay concerning the denizens of Parler.com, a website that shows exactly what happened to all those people in your high school who to this day, consider Leni Riefenstahl’s “Triumph of the Will” as their “It Gets Better” video.

Now, before any of you start thinking of reminding me of Godwin’s Law, I’d suggest that you conserve your breath, because honestly, it really doesn’t apply here. To clarify, Godwin’s Law, (AKA: Godwin’s Rule of Nazi Analogies) stems from a 1990 observation made by American attorney and author, Mike Godwin. The law states: “As a discussion on the Internet grows longer, the likelihood of a comparison of a person’s being compared to Hitler or another Nazi reference, increases.” This is uncannily true in most cases of online engagement, but not here, as the people screeching the loudest about Nazi-esque behavior occurring unchecked, are also frequently the ones actively supporting such actions to be undertaken in the first place.

And yes… I’m looking at you, my Trump worshiping conservatives. Inaccurate assessment, you say, wondering what actions I’m referring to? Try ones such as: demonizing minorities, anti-fascists, the educated, Feminists, abortion advocates, and the LGBTQ community, and the Free Press as “Enemies of the State, just because they dare to call Truth to Power, and demanding unwarranted investigations of them, because your team got caught manufacturing deceptions that a four-year-old could dissemble without breaking a sweat. And in a thuggish gambit that everyone with a working intellect could see coming from miles away, the classic power Fuhrer move Trump and his lackeys failed to pull off when they attempted to overturn a fair and democratic election, was something straight out of Hitler’s stage notes.

Granted, those notes were most likely written in German, just after the paranoiac anti-Semitism turned his brain into rancid Sauerkraut, so that might explain why this comically absurd coup attempt was so badly staged. The parallels that could be drawn between Nazi propaganda and a totally-not-inspired-by-Nazism-at-all Trump branding campaign, just reinforces my firmly held opinion that if the GOP could hire Hugo Boss to whip up some new uniforms for the Trump faithful they would, but that idea had to be scrapped, due to the fact his supporters can only afford off the rack at Walmart, and nowhere else.

By way of comparison, here is the self-declared Übermensch and subsequent charcoal briquet, representing pre-1945 Germany, fiercely resplendent, cloaked in glorious nationalism, and looking all badass:

And here, is the absurdly flattering depiction of his American cosplaying equivalent, who for once in his life, doesn’t look like a ham sandwich that was boiled in dollar-store bronzer:

I only say this because… well, what a captivating image. Resolute. Confident. Radiating an aura of untarnished virtuousness. And most notably, portrayed with an idealized physique he’s never possessed outside the collective wet-dreams of a MAGA rally. One minor exception however, is the underlying context where both of these fascist f**ks are concerned. While the implication is that both are dynamic leaders, if not men of action, only one of them is truly portrayed as being a stalwart “Man of the People”, which Hitler honestly believed he was.

This personal certainty is exemplified by his leading an amassed army of his countrymen, of whom we’re assured, will be victors, regardless of what enemy they may face. But when it comes to Trump…

We couldn’t possibly expect the guy with the “best brain”, the “best words”, the “highest IQ”, the “best education”, and the not-freakishly-small-at-all hands to share the spotlight, even if it’s to further his own crusade of narcissism, now can we? Sure, in the end, Hitler was a murdering sociopathic hypocrite, (and a vegetarian, no less) but our Herr Twittler just may be giving him an earnest run for his money, when all is said and fortunately, no-longer-able to-be-tweeted. Minus of course, the steamed vegetables, unless you’re taking Ivanka and Jared into account.

But even still, he’s maintained the support of at least 74 million AiNO’s [Americans in Name Only] which is both pathetically sad for Humanity, and terrifying for Democracy, as the assembled Coup Klutz Klan of faux “Patriots” demonstrated on January Sixth, in Washington, D.C. And my newest BFF, named Mary Cecelia Walker, apparently believes that the abominable act of cravenly sedition, set in motion by her traitorous President on January 6th, using the curs of lesser character he has on tap, was a perfectly dandy idea, if not way overdue.

However, as you will come to discover, the only time that connection of onomatology ever gets made, is when people find themselves endlessly asking:JESUS CHRIST, WHAT THE F**K IS WRONG WITH YOU, LADY?!!?” The main impetus for this query stems from her political leanings, which at best, come off less than being ill-informed, so much as they present as an entrenched mental illness. This opinion of mine, I heel, is clearly illustrated by this screencap from her main social media account:

Even I have to admit, when it comes to the art of pure dumbf**kery, my newest inductee into the Hall of “What The F**k Is Wrong With You?”, is conservatism’s Jackson Pollock, and not just because her social media ramblings read as if the voices in her head were drunk when she decided to let them post her dribbling online. Granted, while I will never be able to thank them personally for the rich comedic cornucopia, they have provided me for the last several months, I’m pretty sure there just has to be an amiable paranoid schizophrenic out there in the wilds of Trumpland who might be willing to do it for me telepathically, if only I asked nicely enough.

I do love how she characterizes Mike Pence as a “snake in the grass”, because he surprisingly, followed the law of the land, and not the Fascist fallacies of a vulgar man-child who thanks to his unhinged rhetoric, and base of dog-whistle-following f**ktards, fostered in one of the darkest days in this country’s history. I won’t dare speak for anyone save myself, as I’m apt to do from time to time, but I would forgo Ding Dongs for a year if I could get one of these willingly complicit traitors to rationally explain to me, how occupying a national landmark by force, walking it’s halls with the flag of an enemy we defeated over a hundred-years ago, while replacing the American one with the vile banner of a personality cult, looting its contents, threatening it’s elected officials and demanding without just cause, that its democratic process be undone, qualifies as “Patriotism”.

Go ahead. Take all the time you need.

But where our Mary of MAGAdalene truly shines, is her ability to swallow not just everything she reads on the internet as if she were Linda Lovelace servicing John Holmes, but how she also takes it immediately to heart as Gospel without even bothering to do the merest of fact checking first, and that, regardless of how insane it may sound, or actually is. I’m ever so sorry for the 70’s porn-funk soundtrack currently playing in your head right now, but I can assure you that I’m not engaging in unwarranted hyperbole solely for shock’s sake. This woman’s metaphorical fellating of absurdly paranoid and unsubstantiated fantasies is so over-developed, even Sean Hannity is in awe, if not a perpetual state of professional jealousy.

And somewhere, out in the gated communities of Texas, Ted Cruz sits alone, softly crying in his garage, drinking a room-temperature beer, because no matter how much he practices, he just can’t master his intellectual gag reflex the way Mary has. But enough of my poking fun at a woman so allegedly politically dense that she makes depleted Uranium present as anorexic. To that end, I say we get to the meat of the hamberder as it were, and serve it up with not only a great big slice of humble pie, but a steaming cup of covfefe to wash it all down as well.

As I said earlier, Mary is an Artist on par with Jackson Pollack himself. The key difference, being whereas Pollack once found himself so hammered beyond all rational thought on alcohol, that he wound up urinating in Peggy Guggenheim’s fireplace, Mary’s personal hammer of choice is the internet insipidness that she and her fellow MAGAts willingly bathe in as if they were honored guests at a spa day hosted by the *Countess Elizabeth Bathory herself. Unsurprisingly, given her adoration of a mango-tinted man-child, it really should come as no surprise that Mary has the same issue with accepting the Truth of things as her Wheezy Mussolini does trying to speak it.

*[Countess Elizabeth Báthory de Ecsed was a Hungarian noblewoman whom was known for her bathing in the blood of young girls, whose murders she had arranged, believing that it staved off the appearance of aging. And yes… that is bats**t crazy.]

However, much like the multitude of her fellow faux-patriots whose lauded degrees were downloaded off the internet, the one Mary has acquired is an amalgamation of erroneous factoids, asinine opinions, and topped with a fear that only White suburbanites can manifest out of thin air, and yes- she’s going to share her paranoid ignorance, regardless of how much damage it has done, and continues to do, to her demographic of syphilitic monkey-brains. Note I said “monkey-brains”, and not “Americans”, because Mary gave up the right to self-identify as one, when she willingly sided with our Mad King and his cravenly court of sycophantic enablers.

So, as it is with most of her fellow seditious scumbags, our not-so-proud-Mary here is also an ardent denier of the COVID-19 crisis, that so far, has killed 400,000 of her fellow citizens, which of course, couldn’t possibly be laid at the feet of her treasonous twat crush. Said twat-waffle of course, being directly responsible for both the current state of carnage, and the proliferation of hypocritically arbitrary patriotism, but Mary isn’t going to let some inconvenient Reality screw up her tin-foiled, if not oxygen-deprived worldview, no siree Bob. She’s 100% on board the Trump Train, and not just because she’s going to most likely wind up on the “no-fly” list someday.

That observation aside, I think it’s past time that I share with you and the world at large, the wit. the wisdom, and the wanton wackadoo inanity, that shapes Mary’s intellectually isolated perception of Reality, as we ask ourselves just why the one that exists outside her front door seemingly scares her so much. And to do that, I’ll lay out some of her posts regarding the all-too-real conspiracy theories, that dually, serve as the central theme of both her life, and this particular screed:
No, he did not. Not even close. 64 lost legal challenges, the ratification by the electoral college, the multiple recounts in contested states, and the temporarily paused by attempted sedition Congress proved that, so shut the h**k up, you jabbering jackass. And for the love of mythical God, stop using words that you don’t know the meaning of, and regard as boogeyman code, for no other reason than you’re an ignorantly paranoid idiot.
This isn’t so much a conspiracy, as it is Mary being one of those self-entitled Karens we want to see either being launched out of a trebuchet, or taken down face-first, by a flying tackle from a store security guard who’s been regularly abusing steroids.


That’s not how those phone apps work. That’s not how any of it works, you escapee from a loon farm. The only person that’s tracked by cell tech, is the people who own the phone to begin with, and yes, that includes you, if you just so happen to possess one. It already tracks your calls, texts, web-surfing, along with recording everything you say, so that particular Hale-Bopp comet of yours, has already flown by. And it didn’t require an app to do it.

Yes… removing statues of traitors to the United States is exactly the same as launching a world war and targeting an entire culture for genocide. Who knew? Apparently, the shrieking voices in Mary’s otherwise empty skull did, and they were ever so nice enough to give us a head’s up regarding it.

Sigh… this one is so f**king stupid, I’ll just let it speak for itself, because any joke I might make regarding it, would pale in comparison to this asinine absurdity.
This incident, that supposedly occurred at Mary’s local Walmart out here in the high desert of New Mexico, was due to the fact that in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, cash was considered a possible carrier for the virus, and therefore, regarded as “unclean” by the essential workers in the store. Keep in mind, Mary traveled there with her cell phone (AKA: personal tracking device in hand, only tp obsess that her Visa card may be utilized for insidious purposes. More about this in a bit, as to why this was, but let’s move on for now.

Ok… if being vaccinated is anything like being raped, then yeah, I’d pass on the “cure” too, with a fair amount of relief. However, since it’s not, I can only conclude that Mary is either being a tad bit over-dramatic, or she really didn’t properly comprehend what they tried to teach her in that high school sex-ed class she flunked.

This strip-mall located “doctor” by the way, also talks about “Demon Sperm”, so… yeah, we can put a pin in this one, I think. And no, you really don’t want to know more.
Ah… YouTube, Home of cat videos, and now- , “stunning” and not-crazy-at-all evidence that supposedly validates everything from Bigfoot to nonexistent voter fraud. If only Rudy Goofyliani knew of this valuable resource, Trump might just have been able to actually win one of those 64 legal challenges that he lost. After all, if he can grab pussy half as good as he’s bragged about, how hard would it really be for him to snatch a glorious victory out of the jaws of Defeat?

Oh for the love of mythical Christ… if this woman’s mental grip on Reality gets any weaker in regards to how she sees the world entire, we’re going to have to superglue one of those special helmets to the top of her skull, and that, most permanently. I for one, have never given serious pause as to the necessity for bubble-wrapping someone’s personal environment in order to guarantee their physical safety, but I’d opine that if the need ever arose, Mary may just be our first test case.

Human clones? Transfer of memories? Hiding images in DNA? I wasn’t aware that Blade Runner wasn’t so much a dark and brooding cult classic, as it was something that an open supporter of treason potentially dabbled in on the side.

But the best of this tin-foiled twittery is yet to come, and trust me, this post by Mary’s concreted social media consciousness is one for the ages. And even though she’s not responsible for its bats**t as f**k content, her dedication to making sure it was disseminated in the first place, just further validates my assertion as to why in the hopefully not-too-far future, she’ll be an unwilling resident of a place where both she, and the plants in its lobby, will ideally, get watered and turned towards the sun twice a day.
Now because I’m a thoughtful and caring person, I won’t directly post a link to this pile of fallacious flotsam, mainly out of genuine concern what it might do to your remaining faith in Humanity, but if you’re of the mindset that it’s time to throw that metaphorical towel in the octagon before shuffling off this mortal coil, I cordially invite you to go all in with no outside concerns or regrets. Personally, I only managed to last about six minutes, before I had to go pour myself a succession of stronger and stronger shots, starting with Jack Daniels’s, and finishing up with that blue liquid displayed only in barbershops.

However, I will give you the Cliff Notes as it were, of what this fraudcast transmitted on 12/12/2020 was “predicting” for an hour and twenty minutes, and it is this, as transcribed directly off a website that I can only charitably describe as Loon Base Alpha:
CIA assassination squads are active in America, taking out election fraud witnesses. We are all now living on an active battlefield. Millions of Americans being held as Prisoners of War by Democrat governor lockdowns. Media hit pieces and smears have morphed into acts of journo-terrorism. Censorship by big tech has now reached the level of domestic terrorism. Trucker blockades coming. Siege warfare against blue cities will begin. New executive order alters chain of succession at DoD in case Secretary of Defense (Chris Miller) is killed.

Biden, Harris to be named in DNI Ratcliffe’s Dec. 18th report… huge implications, Trump can leverage against Biden to try to force Biden to concede. Gen. Perna Operation Warp Speed / Vaccine D-Day briefing: Perna says “vaccine D-Day” is “the beginning of the end.” China is surrounding the United States via Canada and the Caribbean, and plans a combined land invasion and missile attack in the future.

Forensic audit of Dominion voting machines confirms their algorithms alter votes. Absolute proof now exists that the election was stolen via rigged tabulation software. Sidney Powell readies criminal RICO / Racketeering case against Dominion conspirators.

Sigh… that’s an awful lot of words to prove to everyone that you may be allegedly crazier than a soup sandwich prepared by a s**thouse rat. Just saying. At this point, even the definition of mental illness fails to adequately cover this level of self-delusion, and I’m starting to think that the possible fallback of prescription drug abuse, might actually be an upgrade of sorts, to explain just why these people live in a fantasy world so unbelievable, that even Walter Mitty himself would tell them to either step up their dosage of aripiprazole, or add a few more sessions of group to their weekly schedule.

But Mary is no one-schtick pony, boys and girls- she’s got quite the range, much like COVID-19 does now, or as HIV *[first known as GRID] had back in its day when it wasn’t considered worth combating, until straight white people started dying from it. On a related note: if there is a God, which I strongly doubt, I hope Ronnie and Nancy are strapped to an always rotating rotisserie in the bowels of Hell, being consistently anally-basted with the saltiest of the tears neither one of them shed for the victims they ignored.
*[Gay-Related Immune Deficiency]

Moving on… at the time of this writing, the COVID-19 pandemic crisis that was exacerbated by the mango man-child Mary adores, has claimed over 400T lives, not that such terrifying losses matter to her, if it means she has to actually think or act in regards to the well-being of others long before her own self-importance, that is. Nope, COVID is just another one of those insidious and treacherous plots concocted to make the former President look bad, and to keep both herself and her fellow unseeing citizens under the thumb of… well, I’m not entirely sure who the bad guy is supposed to be here, but I’m sure neither does she.

My bad. It seems I spoke too soon. Apparently, it’s the same Leftist / Socialist / Communist bastards who form the modern-day Democratic Party. Granted, while those may appear as four different and separate political ideologies to those of us, who’s brains aren’t comprised of rancid cottage cheese, to our BFF Mary, they’re all the same thing, regardless of what books, history and Realty say. I do love however, how she regards a public safety warning from our governor as a communistic edict, given the fact that she obviously has no clue what one of those is.

For the sake of clarity, this woeful woman lives in a township so small and understocked with distractions, that people from there, come to mine to have something to do, and the breadth of our “downtown” can literally be walked in under five minutes. And mind you, this assertion comes from someone who requires a cane to do so. We ain’t Dallas. Not by a long shot.

Here we see her getting upset that the EBS was utilized to warn people about the dangers of the COVID-19 crisis in New Mexico, and to offer some crucial advice regarding such, which Mary feels is a “misuse” of its intended purpose, which as we may all be suspecting by now, she most likely doesn’t know the parameters of. But then again, she may also be one of those people who think that 911 is the number to call whenever she spots someone openly wearing a “Black Lives Matter” t-shirt in her neighborhood, Where Reagan once saw a shining city on a hill, this woman sees Antifa crawling out of her hamper. Which is odd, because they’re more apt to be hiding under her bed instead.

In this post, Mary questions the reality of whether New Mexico was actually being affected by COVID, stating that there were only “18-20 cases reported by Memorial Day”. Overall, given what was going on in most of America at that time, this doesn’t sound so bad, and it wouldn’t have been, if her numbers were even remotely accurate, which to no one’s surprise- they weren’t. The actual tally was six dead, and 175 infected. Just a scooch off, I’d say. And given the possibility that every infected person could (in theory) infect three others, the conclusion one could draw from this, means that an initial total could have been as high as 525 persons, I’m thinking her math skills may be just as sharp as the ones she uses to do critical research.

It’s always adorable when someone can combine their paranoid ignorance and thinly veiled racism into one unit, is it not? For lucidity, let me just state that the city where Mary lives has as much of a chance of seeing a violent riot, as I do of seeing Milla Jovovich naked outside of a magazine, or Resident Evil movie.Oh look, it’s noted constitutional scholar Sarah F**kabee Slanders with yet another erroneous and false assertion regarding the document she used as a tampon during her tenure as Propaganda Minister for Donald Trump.… oops, I meant to say “Press Secretary”, Truly, I did. Not only is Saran and her lazy lying eye 100% wrong here, it’s also one of those pesky things that can be easily fact-checked using the merest of research, which as we’ve come to expect, Mary never bothers to do.

To note; The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” To be more concise, the 10th gives states all powers not specifically given to the federal government, allows them the authority to take public health emergency actions, such as setting quarantines and business restrictions. In other words, suck it Sarah- the government IS responsible for the health of its citizens, even its most willingly ignorant ones, such as Mary, and the compensated to be corrupt ones, such as yourself.

FFS… really, you dips**t? When soldiers are on your doorstep forcing you to wear a mask at gunpoint, then this cartoon will actually validate your previously unfounded paranoia. See, where I live, we have a city-wide mandate stating that masks must be worn while in stores, or in any other social situation where one may come into direct or indirect, contact with other people. You don’t have to wear one in your car, or in your shower, or in your home, no matter what the maskholes like to claim nonstop. A precautionary, if not wholly rational, set of guidelines to help possibly arrest the spread of a deadly virus. But for Mary? It’s equivalent to being under NAZI rule. How do I know this, past the implication of the asinine cartoon she posted? Well…

You “have a photo”, you say? Well then… could you produce it for us? And if you can, then why not post it to begin with? It wouldn’t have anything to do with the fact that overall, the local police in New Mexico haven’t enforced the mandate unless the violation of such is egregious beyond the pale, would it? Nah, that can’t be it. But then again, demonizing the police is just par for the course, when it comes to the addled belief system of a mentally-deficient nimrod who is certain that CIA hit squads are “taking out” non-existent voter fraud witnesses.

With no due respect Mary, I’d suggest that this will never be a viable concern for you, because I’m of the mindset that if you do have any friends, they’re most likely either imaginary, or just as f**ked in the head as you are, so in regards to your absurd stance, I’m certain you’ve got nothing to truly worry about.

Once again, you delusional dumbass- THAT’S NOT HOW THAT WORKS. THAT’S NOT HOW ANY OF THIS WORKS. How is it you can spend this much time using tech, and still have no clue what it can and cannot do? I can only imagine the unintentional hilarity that must present itself watching you try to reheat your pizza using your coffee maker.

“Hey everybody with a collective IQ of seven, let’s all get together in a concentrated group to protest having to be socially responsible and wear a piece of cloth over our faces for five minutes at a time, as we call those who do, “Snowflakes”, That’ll show the people in charge of protecting the public health exactly who they’re dealing with- WHO’S WITH ME?”  Easy answer, Mary. Other goddamn selfishly ignorant jackasses like yourself, most of whom will become intimately familiar with the intubation process, somewhere down the road.

And what would Qanon-style quackery truly be without America’s favorite White Supremacy rent-boy, the one and only Tucker Carlson?

Tucker, who it’s alleged by many, will most likely one day be found dead after his regular afternoon session of autoerotic asphyxia goes horribly right, is no stranger to the world of virulent misinformation and unhinged propaganda, having won the coveted centerfold slot for the annual “Racist of the Year” issue of White Incel Seditionist Magazine, no less than twelve times.

But leave it up to the only man who can make Ted Cruz appear Butch, to slither the extra mile in order to fellate the fires of Fanta fascism. So, let’s have some fun with it nonetheless, and dissect this latest blathering from the bottom boy to Sean Hannity’s middle, in the only way I know how. That being, the manner in which Charlie Sheen gets through an average weekend. Line by line.

TC: “Fauci is the High Priest of  the Covid Cult.
AB: This assessment brought to you by the Republican altar boy that gets passed around more than a carton of cigarettes does in prison.

TC: “A paper mask is his scared garment.”
AB: Says the guy who is just dying to wear his KKK cosplay outfit on TV just once,

TC: “Cable television is his pulpit.”
AB: There is so much unintentional hypocrisy in this one statement alone, It may just have given me an aneurysm, if not triggered my gag reflex.

TC: ”The people of Washington bow before Father Fauci.”
AB: This from a complicit tool who never takes off his knee pads as to where Donald Trump is concerned,  and who has never experienced the same level of respect from strangers because he’s a douchebag, but carry on, you fascist Republican leg humper.

TC: ”They throw their Patagonia fleeces before him to ease his way as he passes.”
AB: I seriously doubt that, considering how much one of those costs. Keeping in mind thatwe’re all about recycling and Green energy, does anyone really think we’re going to toss down abrand-new coat that cost $120.00 into a dirty street? I get it Tucker- you’re willing to drop your boxer shorts on command to service the GOP extremist fringe, but the rest of us have managed to keep our dignity. You should try it sometime.

TC: ”They consider him holy.”
AB: Um… no, we don’t. We’re just smart enough to listen to an actual doctor, versus an Adderall addict who once suggested that we inject bleach into our lungs, strangely enough,

TC: ”Now, the city’s mayor Muriel Bowser has made it official.”
AB: I hate to break this to you, but that’s not how Canonization actually works. In order to become a Saint, one must do the following: First, the subject has to be dead for at least five years. This is so the emotional whirlpool around the deceased can settle, thereby guaranteeing that ghe arguments for achieving sainthood can be evaluated objectively.

After the five-year limit has been reached, the bishop of the diocese where the person died can open an investigation to determine whether or not the person lived a life of virtue and service. If it turns out the person has, the bishop then asks the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, which is the branch that advises the Pope regarding saints, for his authorization on opening the case. If this is granted, the individual can then be called a “servant of God”. The Congregation for the Causes of Saints analyzes the acquired evidence of the candidate’s sanctity, and also seeks to certify that people have been inspired by the example they’ve set.

If the Congregation supports the case, it is then kicked upstairs to the Pope. If the Pope agrees that the person lived a virtuously heroic life, they are then labeled as “venerable”. To reach the next stage, known as beatification, a miracle must occur that has to be ascribed to prayers made in the name of the deceased individual. This is seen as proof that the individual resides in heaven, and therefore, is hence able to influence God towards the benefit of others.

However, these alleged occurrences must be “verified” by evidentiary proof before they can be certified as miracles. After which, the candidate is bestowed as being “blessed”. The lone exception to this process, is for those who died for their faith, and consequently, they can be beatified, as they are deemed to be a martyr.

The concluding step in affirming a deceased person as a saint, is known as Canonization. To acquire this hallowed title, the verification of a second miracle accredited to prayers made to the intrant up for consideration is required. Once again, Martyrs are the lone exception, as they need only a single substantiated miracle to achieve sainthood.

And while Fauci has dome many things in his career that can be called virtuous, the odds of being able to successfully running the Pope’s gauntlet is not in hs favor. But then again, his odds of achieving mythical God’s imaginary favor is far better than Trump’s face ever gracing Mount Rushmore, so there is an upside after all.

TC: ”Bowser has declared December 24th– formerly the date of a notable Christian holiday- “Doctor Anthony S, Fauci Day.”
AB: “Notable Christian holiday”? Does anybody want to tell F**ker that Christmas has as much to do with Jesus and the glorification of his birth, as I have to do with organizing the Cowboys for Trump monthly high tea? The actual origins of our modern-day Christmas,
originally evolved from the pagan practice of celebrating the winter solstice, and not celebrating the mythical Son of God, Jesus Christ. To note- there is NO credible evidence anywhere as to when the prophet turned Lord or All was born, and therefore, Christmas is yet another one of those pagan revelries hijacked by the Christian faith, and rewritten to conform to their beliefs alone.

However, don’t you fret, because I have it on good authority that Santa is real, so you still have that going for you. Unfortunately, it was Jesus who told me this, and since he’s imaginary, you may want to take this declaration with some salt. But on the upside, I recently stopped mixing my Rum with paint thinner, and since I’ve done that, I don’t have those kinds of conversations any more. But I also think now is the perfect time for a break from this screed, and this spot is as good a place as any to stop, methinks.

However, I’m not done with this alleged seditious supporter of idiocy just yet- in fact, I’m just warming up, and when I pick up the baton, we’ll be delving into some as yet undiscussed hobbies of hers- alleged blatant racism and Islamophobia, her love of fake news, and of course, her cultish devotion to our recently disposed mango man-child moron, the one and thank Odin, the only, Donald J. (for “jackass”)Trump.

It’ll be fun. It’ll be enlightening. And it will definitely aggravate you as well.
Trust me… I am a writer, after all.

“For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”- Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark


The Parler-ticks of Dashing. (Where Do They Gloat from Here)

“We got the message / I heard it on the airwaves / The politicians / Are now DJs / The broadcast was spreading / Station to station / Like an infection / Across the nation / Though you know you can’t stop it / When they start to play / You’re gonna get out the way / The politics of dancing / The politics of, ooh, feeling good / The politics of moving, aha / If this message’s understood”
– The Politics of Dancing, song lyrics by Paul Fishman and released by the British band Re-Flex, in 1983.

Hello Blogiteers!

It’s finally (sort of) over. Thank God / Satan / Odin / Allah / Shiva / Zeus / Anubis / Hades / Ares / Ra, SpongeBob Squarepants and any other imaginary deity that can guarantee that not only will this country never have to deal with the Constitutional crisis that it just barely survived, we’ll also be graced with the lack of the visible presence of those inadvertently spawned by a cabal of absent fathers, and who’s best attributes were discarded prematurely on the inside of their mothers thighs.

While this wasn’t the main impetus fueling the crushing voting turnout that so happily unseated the domestic and international nightmare that was our Oompa-Loompa-tinted Wheezy Mussolini, it is still a joyous, if not unexpected, mirthful, consequence of such as well.

Now to be sure, it’s still too early in the game to predict what these collective Gravy Seals of Meal Team Six are apt to do, since they’ve just found themselves eternally cast in History as both a walking joke and cautionary tale, but if they attack as well as they debate, plan abductions, boycott companies, and showcase their critical thinking skills, I’m pretty sure that we’ll be safer than a prepubescent girl hanging out with Michael Jackson at Neverland Ranch, and probably far more consumed with unintended maniacal laughter, too.

Because when it comes right down to it, how seriously upon first sight, would you take a group of ideologically challenged xenophobic pinheads who willingly dress up and walk around in public like this?

I’m not trying to imply that this fine example of what happens when you fail to adequately fund both public education and access to birth control is some of the best unintentional comedy that this republic has seen in decades, due to the damage they’ve done to the fibers of its moral fabric, but c’mon…

even I have to admit that the level of ironically unaware self-ownership is epically off all the known charts previously entered into the public record. Despite the results of the godawful scheißshow that was this year’s presidential race, these human analogs for a bitterly undercooked pork and liver sandwich aren’t going anywhere or for that matter, away, anytime soon. The Jinn has been set upon the world entire, and it isn’t going to get back in its lamp willingly, now that it’s gotten a taste of power and the cultural influence resulting from the application of said catalyst.

This mélange of political inanity, racism, misogyny, bigotry, faux Christianity, stunningly hypocritical double-think, and an unfounded sense of pride in being blatantly ignorant, have all melded into a distillation of the worst aspects of Humanity, and while these qualities primarily comprise all that is, and all that will ever be, in regards to the abomination that is our outgoing dickless demagogue of dipshittery, it has also unfortunately produced a legion of cultishly devoted followers so educationally and morally imprudent, that even Caligula himself would be embarrassed to be seen in public with them.

And then there’s this sub-basement of larded losers we’ll still be dealing with for years to come.

It would be rather effortless to dismiss these not-so-Proud mamas-boys (and daddy’s-girls) as nothing more than imbecilic societal failures, even though this is not without some merit when seen within the grand scheme of things, but we should also take care not to smugly disregard what they may be capable of, if allowed to ferment unchallenged in the dark. Keep in mind that for every group of morbidly obese Jim-Bobs cosplaying urban soldier waddling in the wilds of Michigan or in the backwoods of Idaho, there’s a subset that’s actively planning terroristic acts with all the intensity of a fourteen-year-old boy checking out his first ill-gotten copy of Playboy.

Or given the technology of the current age, his first uninterrupted experience watching pretty much anything Pornhub has to offer. Or XNXX.com.

Either/or.
Different strokes and all that, no pun intended.

And while the majority of his pustulant disciples may retract their testicles of diminutiveness at the merest mention of ANTIFA, BLM, or an open library book, these future mental illness case studies and current FBI watchlist honorees, are more than excited at the possibility of picking up the metaphorical gauntlet in the so-called “defense” of their warped values as personified by the orange-tinted candy-ass they’ve pinned all their pathetic masturbatory fantasies of cultural domination to, but I digress.

This ain’t your daddy’s Republican party anymore, not that it has been for quite some time, but there’s definitely an arguably dark and deep chasm that’s developed between Ronald Reagans’ overly delusional “Great Society”, and the fascist-love-fest that the GOP has been willingly shilling hats, t-shirts, hate, divisiveness, and conspiracy theories for, since just before Barrack Obama was elected. And in their opinion, that wasn’t due to his serving as an example of how far American societal attitudes had matured, but to destroy everything that they held dear, such as the Bible, the Second Amendment, and protecting American hamburgers from the besmirching of Grey Poupon Mustard.

None of this is, or ever was, even remotely close to being true, but that’s how it was, and continues to be, packaged to a perpetually terrified white voter base no less than four years after the fact, as they believe a series of racist dog-whistles consistently blown harder than Melania’s next in line sugar daddy before the current one finds himself in jail, or if there is truly  indeed a God, before she not only sees her Einstein Visa revoked, but finds herself deported back to the makeup section of whatever passes for Walmart back in her native Slovenia.

Well that, or maybe we could just try calling her home-world and see if we can finally convince them to come and pick her back up, the next time they’re engaged in an act of what for them, serves as intergalactic cow tipping.

Let’s face it… It’s worth a shot. After all, they did take Andy Kaufman and Elvis back, which in retrospect, seems like a gargantuan mistake on our part. Just saying. But in our limited defense, it’s not like we had any prior warnings that Andy Dick and Nickelback were eventually going to show up.

There’s an old adage that goes “Evil never dies. It merely waits. And it grows stronger in the dark.”, so the most dangerous attitude we can take is to pretend all is well now, just because we hopefully managed to find the last Horcrux of Lord Moldyshorts. The reasoning that these cravenly cultists will go away quietly is not only overly optimistic, it’s also delusional as well, given their past and future desperation to maintain their death-grip on culturally political relevance.

Along those lines, an observation regarding evil penned by author Tess Gerritsen in her novel The Surgeon, notes that: “Evil doesn’t die. It never dies. It just takes on a new face, a new name. Just because we’ve been touched by it once, it doesn’t mean we’re immune to ever being hurt again. Lightning can strike twice.” While this may sound trite, given the fact that this wisdom is contained within a novelization based on the TV show “Rizzoli & Isles”, it does have a rather lengthy lineage of historical precedent as to its veracity.

For my part, the essence of what true Evil is, has always struck me as having the same dynamics of movement that mercury possesses. It flows effortlessly, regardless of whatever obstruction has been placed in its path, until its absorbed, and then the not-so-fun process of sickening the body begins in pure earnest. Whereas the previous symbols of Evil couldn’t be shown casually outside either carefully selected company or invitation-only locations, such as a Klan BBQ, an Idaho Compound, or a Republican family wedding and/or Fundraiser, the most recent visual incarnation of malevolent intent has singlehandedly managed to ruin both the color red and the former banality from which it sprang. I am of course, referring to this pile of merde one wears atop their empty skull to advertise their personal idiocy.

This symbol of wretchedly ignorant patheticness and faux-patriotism aside, the majority feeling within this country regarding the apocalyptic road show that has been the Trump administration and as to how its supporters will be viewed in the future, can be best summed up with the below meme, I think.

Speaking of which, given all that has happened within this flaming dumpster of depravity over the last four years, ranging from scandals of incompetence to outright corrosive corruption, the following question must be asked: “why are there any people left who still support this deacon of dumbf**kery in the first place?” Fortunately, I have the answer, and it comes literally from the horse’s ass… oops, I meant to say mouth. Mouth, I say!

This explanation of a belief system that for everybody else remains the closest thing we as a country will ever have to experiencing what a collective bad acid trip would feel like if we didn’t know the dealer personally, was best summed up by my newest right-wing BFF and twice-written-about human analog for sentient vanilla wafers, who issued the following insight for those of us snowflakes who just can’t grasp the concept as to why an otherwise normal human being would be so deliriously willing to lay down for a man who wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire. Once again, boys and girls, may I reintroduce the wit and wisdom that emanates from the lips of a man so proudly White, that he makes Mayonnaise present as the most exotic of all flavors…

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the one, and happily, the only… KEN CYKALA!!!
[A lone dog barks… a tumbleweed rolls by… somewhere close, a pigeon yawns…]

People? We’ve talked about this… when a guest like Ken shows up, you take his hood, his robe, his tiki-torches, and his pro-White supremacy memes, all while ignoring the fact that he smells like gasoline and bigotry, because that’s the job of a good host. And whatever you do, don’t let him know that none of the kitchen staff is white- we really don’t need him going full Kevin on us over his Turkey sandwich being handled by somebody he’d let mow his lawn, but not date his daughter. But as usual, Ken does serve a valuable purpose of sorts, and this time, it’s not to be just as an inadvertent subject of mockery. In Ken’s own inimitable words, which I will respond to in my usual style:

Ken: “If you are a liberal and can’t stand Trump and can’t understand why we want to vote for him let me fill you in. We don’t understand you either.”

AB: With no due respect, that’s just one singular item on an ever-growing list of things you don’t fully understand Ken, but I digress, because there simply isn’t enough room on the Web to go through all of what puzzles you here.

Ken: “You’ve done everything in your power to destroy this country by tearing down our police,”

AB: Yes, what a terrible position we’ve taken, holding the representatives of our civic safety personally accountable for murdering unarmed African-American citizens. That is, when they’re not abusing their mandated authority as they’ve been doing in ever-increasing incidents, as witnessed and recorded by the very persons they took an oath to protect.

Ken: “our cities, borders,”

AB: Would that be the cities that dare to allow minorities to live in close proximity to White persons like yourself, Kimberly? If so, I’d suggest you move to Idaho, and buy yourself a nice secure compound with really high walls, so that the scary darkies can’t remind you of their presence on this planet. And the best part? There’s plenty of alleged white supremacist morons like you, who are already entrenched like ticks living there already, so you’d feel right at home.

Ken: “and our history-systematically destroying our schools,’

AB: Oh no! Did a school actually tell the truth about how this Republic was founded on the racist and genocidal skeleton of eminent domain? Are the kids learning about slavery? Or our systemic racism? What about how we recruited some NAZIs, and let others escape Justice entirely? Perhaps they’re being shown why the Confederate flag is a sign of sedition and not culture? Gasp! I wonder if they’re experiencing what capitalism has come to represent as they attend school via Zoom, while their parents stress out as to how they’re going to pay for food, the mortgage, and all their other bills, as our legislators refuse to do anything for them or about it, But don’t worry, because the billionaires got a much-needed tax break, and that always trickles down, am I right?

Maybe they’re being taught to think critically, and to review all available evidence before making decisions based on nothing more than hubris and ignorance? Sure, that’s sort of worked out for you, not having to actually think and all, but most of us like seeing the next generation using their brains to their fullest potential. Mainly, so they don’t turn out as ignorantly bigoted, hateful, and pathetically useless as you.

Ken: “brainwashing our kids to make them think that socialism is the answer to everything.’

AB: Does anyone else see the unaware irony in this statement? Good. I was staring to worry. The guy who was educated in the public school system supported by taxes, who drives to work on tax-supported roads, and uses utility infrastructure underwritten and maintained in place by citizen-funded revenues, and who posts his idiocy on a social platform that operates under the same, wants to give us a lecture on the evils of using other peoples’ money to help those very same people live their best lives… let us all pay rapt attention. And don’t forget to take notes.

Ken: “Demonizing religion and faith,”

AB: Says the very same person demonizing any other religion that doesn’t qualify under his faux perception of what “real” Christianity is, and who needs to whine obliviously about how unfair it is that we won’t let him pimp Jesus out as a convenient excuse to be an abominable person. The sacred heart bleeds. And just for the record Ken, we don’t have any issue with you practicing your faith, what we take issue with, is you perverting the Word to justify your hurting of others who’ve done nothing to you, and pretend it’s Religion.

Ken: “glorifying abortion,”

AB: Ah, the pro-life dilletante who’s okay with cops murdering African-Americans, our President throwing immigrant children in cages, taking away food and financial aid from those who require it, and believes that BLM’s job is to fix all of the social ills that have vexed the African-American community for decades, regardless of whom or what is actually responsible for them, is morally offended by a personal and legal decision that he will never have to make, since he lacks both a uterus, and the inherent right to tell a woman what to do with her own body.

What Ken and the rest of his Handmaid’s Tale reenactors tend to overlook and on purpose, no less, is that even if they managed to end the legal practice of abortion, it won’t, in fact, actually cease to be. All it will do is end the practice of safe abortions. Hypocritically, these so-called Warriors for the Unborn are also the same demographic that fight against teaching sexual education in schools, and providing birth control access to those who want it, two measures, that actually decrease the rate of abortion and unwanted teen pregnancies.

Adding to this hill of less than noble aspirations, is the fact that once these children are born, people like Ken are the first to line up, sharpen their pitchforks, and light the tiki-torches of unfounded self-indignation, to malign those who carry the burden and guilt that Ken thinks Jesus would assign them. You know… if he had actually said anything about abortion in the first place? And Ken, NOBODY anywhere, at any time, or under any circumstance, has ever “glorified” abortion. They, unlike you, just understand that its not their right to demand that their voice be counted regarding what is in essence, nobody else’s goddamn business to begin with.

And if you are still ticked off about the act, then maybe you should consider the awkward fact that your mango man-crush with bone spurs of clay, is alleged to have paid for a few himself, although given his history of forcing sexual partners to sign NDA’s, the truth may never be known.

Ken: “violence and thug culture.”

AB: To be sure, if there is one thing the GOP is known for, it’s promoting the ideals of Peace. Just ignore a homegrown militia taking over governmental offices, or the Trump supporters showing up heavily armed and wearing riot gear to “patrol” voting stations, that is, when they’re not forcing campaign buses off the road in Texas, running protestors over in Charlottesville, or trying to subvert the Democratic process by threatening election workers. And when it comes to calling for a civil war if the Fanta Fascist isn’t reelected, nobody does it laughably better than these than hardcore followers of the teachings of Gandhi, as evidenced by the compiled photo of pure Zen depicted below. And keep in mind, they’re not going up against an opposing crowd of protestors here, they’re this pissed off at seeing a news crew inside a rented venue full of their own kind.


In fact, given how genteel his followers are, it’s almost embarrassing to even mention how many incidents of targeted violence they’ve been responsible for over the course of the last few years, such as physical assaults, vandalism, and race-based hate crimes, all in the name of their manatee man-child. But on the upside, at least they’ve taken a lot of the heat off the ghost of Tupac Shakur, so there is that.

Ken: “From calling us racist,“

AB: This observation brought to you by the very same man whose Facebook page reads like a combination Proud Boys toilet training manual and cookbook, but please carry on with the posting of your racist memes, false race-based statistics, and masturbatory paranoid fantasies about BLM, as you whine about how you’ve been unjustly tarred as a bigot, Vanilla Lice.

Ken: “to ridiculing us for having the audacity of saying Merry Christmas,”


AB: No, you’ve been ridiculed for seriously claiming that you’ve been ridiculed for uttering a saying that even devout Muslims use just as frequently as you do. Other than the fact that nobody on Earth has ever mocked anybody else on Earth for saying “Merry Christmas” for any reason, this may quite possibly be the stupidest metaphorical hill that you’ve ever chosen to willingly die on. It’s so goddamn asinine to be honest, that rather than make a joke at your expense, I’ll just move on instead, knowing that the odds of you accidentally killing yourself heating up your Hot Pocket just went up about a thousand percent. And here I was, thinking that the probable cause of your ultimate expiration was going to involve the blatant misapplication of a reversed leaf-blower during a moment of self-pleasuring.

Ken: “or having a flag and celebrating 4th of July and standing for our National Anthem.”

AB: Once again, nobody on Earth has ever mentioned being offended by your Fourth of July celebrations, Ken. Well… except maybe the ones that certain alleged fans of your dogma hold on the front lawns of African-Americans at 3 A.M. in the morning, that is. And as for the whole “not standing for the National Anthem” garbage you Trumpanzees push as if you were Ecstasy dealers at a Midwestern college? It’s almost ironic, considering how often you guys fall for everything, so maybe you should just sit this round out, pumpkin.

Ken: “Or the Horror- wearing a MAGA hat out in public; so much for your tolerance!”

AB: Weird that smugly walking around with a symbol of racism, misogyny, willing ignorance, and treason perched on top of your otherwise empty skull, would elicit such a strong reaction from people whose souls and intellect actually work the way they’re supposed to, is it not? And I’ll keep that plea for tolerance in mind, the next time your candy-asses are whining about gay marriage, the civil rights of African-Americans, Islamic mosques, the #metoo movement, BLM, Antifa, and women having autonomy over their own bodies and health decisions.

Out of respect for both the free-time and the sanity of my readers, I won’t even rehash all the hilariously unsuccessful boycotts you dips**ts have launched, just because some corporation dared suggest that perhaps, the non-white, non-Christian, non-male demographic that sadly has to coexist side by side with your allegedly racist ass, has the same rights as you.

Ken: “We are voting for Trump not because he is the most charming character on the block; but because we vote for policy over personality.”

AB: No, you voted for Trump because you’re a cabal of sociopaths who’s willing to bleed if the people you consider inferior to yourself, find themselves theoretically suffering more than you, due to the machinations of a man so narcissistic, he’s had the inside of his eyelids mirrored. And as to your claim of “policy over personality”? the only policy you’re hoping for is the one that reverses the 13th Amendment, and also grants you a sizeable discount when you get your white hoods and robes dry-cleaned. And as to the subject of personality, I’d suggest you endeavor to acquire one that wasn’t rented previously by David Duke.

Ken: “We are sick and tired of your divisive, destructive, ignorant and intolerant behavior and beliefs parading around like some kind of “wokeness”” .

AB: For the sake of clarity Ken, I wasn’t aware that the Left was the side primarily responsible for mass shootings, sending pipe bombs to Congresspeople, drawing up plans to kidnap Governors so that they could be tried in a kangaroo court, setting ballot boxes on fire, calling the cops on African-Americans doing nothing more that living their lives, arming themselves to the teeth when they go out for a cup of coffee, storming en masse into election counting stations and demanding that democracy be usurped, and blindly following a mushroom-dicked megalomaniac who needs to have ego rallies every two weeks, because even his own wife won’t f**k him without a check being cut first, but please continue with your self-owning soapboxing, as we all could use the laugh at your expense when it comes to the inherent hypocrisy masquerading as your opinion.  

Ken: “We are voting for Trump because of you!”

AB: Yep. It’s all our fault, and not because you’re a bunch of hatefully racist, whiny faux-patriotic bitches who, because of a chromosome-deficiency resulting from their family tree resembling a wreath, possess all the critical thinking skills that the progeny of a union between a urinal cake and a venereal disease might have. And let me be the first to thank you so much for pointing this out to us, so that we can work on our flaws and become much better people. Hopefully in time, we can become just as racially paranoid and intellectually dim-witted as yourself in the long run. One can only hope. And if you actually believe that we’ll endeavor to do this, man have I got a bridge with a matching statue to sell you, because it’s become fairly obvious given your support of this throat cancer made walking flesh, that you’ll pretty much buy anything.

All of Ken’s unhinged ranting aside, it’s yet another nail in the coffin for the proof that even with Trump being taken out of the equation and his obsessively craved spotlight, we’ll still have the previously mentioned issue of intermeshed idiocy to deal with for possibly decades to come, given the current statistical models available for our perusal. And thankfully, I am not alone in this opinion, as the world’s view of our newly deposed Glorious Leader can be best summed up by how the lauded Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in Berlin decided to recently display their still smarter than the real thing wax sculpture of America’s spray-tanned s**t-spewing poster child for unchecked sociopathic narcissism to ever inflict itself upon others:

Damn. That move was so stone-cold, I could chill my drink just by walking past it. If anything, I think this act of exhibited contempt just goes to show that when it comes to the international community at large, Trump’s disastrous tenure has garnered the same respect that the director’s cut of “Bolero” did at the 1984 Academy Awards. And on a related note, Bo Derek was outright robbed when it came to the award for Best Actress that year, let me tell you.

But then again in retrospect… maybe not.

If I were to speak in my limited defense however, I was fifteen at the time, so a movie starring the hot chick from “10” cavorting around in the buff yet again for my late-night illicit amusement as her hair and makeup remain perfect throughout? Why yes, please. I’ll gladly sit through a film that makes 1984’s ignored cinema gem *“Ice Pirates” play like Shakespeare for that. And Ice Pirates actually co-stars Ron Perlman, so how cool of an unexpected bonus is that?
*[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-YZ8WOU1-w]

(All kidding aside, a great and super-cheesy 80’s flick, which I’d rank as being right up there with another 80’s diamond in the rough, Battle Beyond the Stars, which you can watch for free on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnvhVZOHDX8 )

Getting back on track, Trump immediately went to the subterranean closet where he’s hidden both his tax returns and marriage vows, and pulled out his box of threadbare classics, ranging from unsubstantiated cries of voter fraud to threats of legal action to stop valid ballots from being counted, which let’s face it, was what we all expected, given his fear of what prosecutorial actions are about to come his way, and that right quick. Keep in mind, this election has set a record for the highest voter turnout in 120 years. According to the US Election project, a nonpartisan site that tracks voting, an estimated 160M out of an eligible voting base of 239M cast their ballots this election cycle.

To give you some perspective, currently we’re seeing a 66.9% turnout, versus the 73.75% set by the 1900 election. That’s right kids- the last time voters turned out in a mass like this, was the very same year that the Zeppelin was invented. Ironic that one century saw the proliferation of an enormous bag of gas as a means to move the Industrial Age forward, and in this, the Era of Technology, we saw the removal of the very same, to achieve a similar goal. And even stranger, the failure of both parallels can be summed up in one photo:

Although to be fair, the Era of the Hindenburg might have had a few less NAZI’s to deal with, compared to whom Trump ultimately inspired, admired, and gleefully hired. The legacy that he will leave behind is one of presidential failure on a colossal scale as yet previously unseen, and the bitter truth he’ll serve up for his White Supremacist base is their knowing beyond reproach that the White guy they hired to destroy the achievements of a Black one, only showed that he and more importantly, they, were impotently inferior to completing the task. This however, does not negate the hard work that will belabor this country for years to come, as I have to wonder exactly how one manages to excise the vile residue of Trumps influence, and the people who are still swayed by it, off and out of, our country as it now currently stands.

The reality is that his base of bitchy bloviating blockheads aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, and not just because the ability to reintegrate them back into a civilized society may prove to be damn near impossible, but because of the lingering pandemic, that dually fostered by inaction and personal stupidity, bars them from traveling to anywhere that previously, might be willing to have had us. These people have had a taste of relevance, imaginary power, and feed off the palpable sense of fear that they can sometimes generate, so should any of us think that they would be more than willing to crawl back under the rocks from which they originally slithered?

By way of example, do any of you out there think for a second that this guy is truly open to a measured and logical debate? Especially when you just know that he touches his guns just as much as he touches himself, the only difference being that when he uses both hands during target practice, he doesn’t consider it as a three-way worth bragging about to his reflection.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking the act of self-love, but when you have to begrudgingly do it because your inflatable girlfriend consistently fakes springing a leak to avoid you touching her, odds are probably pretty good you’re walking around with one hell of a chip on that ham hock you call a shoulder. Combine that with an unfounded sense of being deceitfully socially marginalized, and that smoldering anger is equivalent to an entire case of Mentos and Diet Coke just waiting to go off, sadly f**king up that studio apartment they rent from their Mom in the process.

Hilariously, but not at all unexpected, the moronic mob that proudly wore this T-shirt to public events both formal and casual…

and who shrieked it as one of their rallying war cries, is now demanding that we don’t treat them harshly, something that I plan on doing with such frequency, that I may have to turn pro just to justify the tax deductions I’m going to claim regarding my efforts come April.

But I will, for the sake of my personal grace, offer them one piece of heartfelt advice in order to ease their pain somewhat. And the best part of doing this, is knowing that to a one, they already own several items of clothing boldly emblazoned with my repurposed message of sympathetic self-determination, that they can wear to cheer themselves up every time they get down in the Trumps. What was it they always liked to say, grinning with a smile only seen on the faces of serial killers when they run across a drunken coed, as they showed just exactly why most of them couldn’t open a Pop-Tart package without an adult’s help? Ah, yes… “GET OVER IT.”-17 goi-

Trust me, after a few months of sporting this scarlet slogan of shame, all of these people will be right as rain, rest assured. I for one, can’t wait to see the amount of disingenuous rationalization that’s going to occur aa these sub-Americans try to convince us not only that they’re ready to sit at the adults table yet again, but that we can trust them with the sharp knives once more. Now, while some people with far better souls than mine may be genuinely open to this idea of reconciliation down the road, I however, am never going to forgive those who willingly enabled this sociopath from the very first day that he took office, until the end of his presidency, which started with a ride down a golden escalator and ended with a savagely embarrassing press conference, located between a crematory and a dildo store.

Which hands down, is one pf the best political analogies ever witnessed in American politics, and serves as the best encapsulation of what Trump truly represented during his time in office: unavoidable death, and elements of sleaze that have no place in polite conversation, or our governance. The reality has always been that most former Presidents receive future accolades after their term/s of office, but I think Trump may be the rare public exception to this expected cornerstone of our now somewhat slightly damaged republic. Therefore, the question that arises is this: what glorification that his name could be attached to, is one that America would accept without protest?

Scratch a Presidential Library, as he’s never read a book, much less actually written one in his entire life, and I’m pretty sure that those halls of academia aren’t supposed to have an adult streaming section focused primarily on the cinematic works of Stormy Daniels, to begin with. There won’t be any sport stadiums clamoring for his name on the side, given his abominable comments regarding African-American athletes, nor will there be any cultural institutions knocking on his door, given his disdain for anything intellectually deeper than the veneer on his dentures.

And when it comes to the realm of successful personal endeavors, if this shell of a man couldn’t sell steaks, vodka, magazines, airplane services, a board game, or maintain faithfulness in his marriages, I seriously doubt he has the wherewithal to sustain his public presence far beyond the 2,102,400 minutes he’s already inflicted on the American people during his Reign of Error.

The only thing we still may have to suffer, until either cheeseburgers or New York’s AG takes him out, is his holding yet even more low IQ ego-stroke rallies, where he spreads both ignorance and COVID-19, as if it were glitter at a preschooler crafting party. And while he may no longe may have the national spotlight, he will still possess his nationalized front of *treue Kultisten that are not only still under his sway of influence, but are more than willing to finance his Ponzi scheme of creating a “defense fund” to challenge the valid election that unseated him.
*[“Loyal cultists”.]

However, any donations under 8K goes to “Save America,” a Trump leadership PAC, or political and the Republican National Committee, and under Federal Election Commission rules, both groups have broad leeway in how they can use the funds. In theory, Trump’s PAC could spend money on other candidates, pay for personal expenses, of which, travel and hotel stays would be covered using this so-called “defense fund”. The breakdown is thus: if somebody donates 8k, the Save America PAC would receive 5K, and the RNC, $3,300K. If the same said donor contributed $500, $300 of it would go to the SA PAC, and $200 would go to the RNC, with zero going to the fund that the donor believes that they’ve actually contributed to.

This fundraising effort is yet another insincere fraud upon a pile of previous frauds enacted by Trump to bolster both his ego and his failing empire, one that he built on the most unstable swath of moral marshland that he could find, using other people’s money. And despite his self-claimed business acumen, this newest flaccid deceit will fail as spectacularly as his term in office did, for he simply has nowhere to go but down, and his enemies both real and imagined, will make sure of that, if for no other reason than the Schadenfreude that will come of it. And while the rest of us might go to ground when faced with certain future prosecution and the after-effects of a legendarily humiliating defeat, both of which can literally be laid at his feet alone, Trump simply can’t do so, because quite honestly, his Ego doesn’t know how to gracefully egress.

Opining as someone who has “successfully quit” no less than 176 times, the act of drinking daily six-packs of Coke and engaging in consistent chilled Ding Dong gluttony, I can’t imagine that the process of stepping away from your role as a cult leader can be accomplished quite in the same way that one can stop smoking cigarettes, by going cold-turkey. Especially when it’s a widely known and accepted fact that you’re a slovenly s**t-spewing raging narcissistic sociopath to begin with. Trump approaches Fame very much in the same way that Iggy Pop once did heroin, except for him, the act of forcibly withdrawing from the public’s eye is a fate possibly far worse than even the most terrifying of horrid deaths.

Speaking of withdrawal symptoms, it seems that the Trump faithful are going through some of their own, but unlike those kicking heroin, the resultant hope for these Rage addicts isn’t to improve their situation by reentering society, but to flee via the World Wide Web to another land where they, and others of their ilk, can hide inside their bouncy castles of reinforced intolerance instead. Imagine that… the very same self-declared conservative bad-asses who mocked Liberals for needing a “safe space”, have finally come out of their Mom’s basement as the truly craven candy-asses we’ve always known them to be, and are migrating en masse to the biggest pillow fort of Pussitude ever coded, that being the Facebook clone known far and wide as Parler, or as many are currently calling it; “MeinSpace.”

Other lovingly bestowed names for this cravenly assemblage of sheer asininity, are as follows: Fashbook, OnlyFash, 4Klan, HickTok, Plenty of Fash, OkStupid, MoronMingle, KlansMenOnly, Flakebook, Meindr, CrySpace, and a newcomer that I’m both behind and against, that being “Reichbook”. The reason as to why this is so, is not too complicated to ascertain. On one hand, I loathe consistently seeing my surname associated with these contradictory *Cronenbergs, and on the other… well, it was superlatively summed up by my best friend, who noted wryly on my FB page that; “I don’t know, an entire social media network dedicated to you seems on brand. 😉
*[David Cronenberg is the Canadian horror film director best known for the cinematic cult classics, “Videodrome“ and “Scanners”. In popular slang, a “Cronenberg” is a grotesque, often mutilated being that resembles something one might find at a Trump rally.]

Undoubtedly, he may have struck the nail on the head with that one, but at least I could easily guarantee that my version would have far less NAZI sympathizers on it than the current FB does, and that Parler is hoping to attract to its website, which seemingly caters to the type of person who when they do get laid, it’s either due to an act of incredible charity or the forcibly applied use of chloroform. And most likely, that f**king will be done with their socks on, no less.

When you factor in the realization that their bank account balances are far too low to hire a professional for the evening, or in their case, a 20-minute pity-party at best, it becomes obvious as to why these terrified twittering twats have no choice but to claim the moral high ground as they once again hide under the internet’s bed, and wave their Chinese-made flags of cowardice and ignorance. For those of you who still aren’t hip as to what this alt-right Facebook is, here’s a brief synopsis, courtesy of yours truly, referenced from a previous blog I wrote about one of its alleged members, a local from around my neck of the woods who is the end result of what would happen if one took a jar of rancid mayonnaise and gave it both life and Internet access.

So, if I were to loosely paraphrase myself, I’d probably note that Parler, which launched in August 2018, is a website that hilariously claims to be all about nonbiased “free speech”, yet it’s content typically consists of far-right canonized mistruths, antisemitism, and conspiracy theories that are best suited for an audience dressed in tin-foil. Or maybe they could print up some special shirts for their newest members, as it seems the classic brown ones are back in vogue among them these days. Just an idea, from me to you, my *entzückende Soziopathen.
*[You know the drill. Google it.]

But who exactly, is their stereotypical audience? That would be hardcore Trump supporters, conservatives, and oddly, Saudi nationals- three separate but concurrently warped demographics that abhor the purest aspects of Free Speech and Reality to begin with. So, if my case need be proven to those skeptics still remaining within the range of my writing it appears that if I were ever inclined to commit suicide, all I need do is climb to the top of this collective’s group Ego, and then hurl myself down to the level of its IQ, and voila… mission accomplished, and not without with leaving a fair amount of splatter behind as an achievement, I might add.

The last time I ever heard of this many members of a Fascist swingers club fleeing to a symbolic sovereign nation with no discernible extradition treaties, was right after World War two, when Argentina experienced a huge influx of German tourists asking desperately to overstay their visas by just a few decades or so. Now, this might be debated as almost admirable if it were honorable dissidents or the like seeking Sanctuary, but these, the most cowardly yield of the Trumpkin patch are so not that, as we shall come to see.

On its thin as veneer surface, Parler markets itself as an alternative to Facebook’s notoriously uneven and arbitrary monitoring algorithms, as reflected in these screenshots from the site:

However, when it comes to its declaration of being a truly open free speech platform, the actuality of what it considers as such may be a tad bit murkier, the proof provided courtesy of the previous postings. To note;

Customize what you see and who you interact with by filtering out sensitive material, bots (or accounts that identify as bots) — or even particular keywords you’d rather not see in comments to your parleys. Whatever you’d rather not see on your profile or feed, we give you the tools you need to do your own “shadow-banning” – while still leaving everyone else free to decide for themselves what they wish to see on their profiles and feeds.”

I don’t know about you, but for me, there’s nothing funnier than unintended and ironically hypocritical self-owning humor. Especially when you keep in mind that the people who get off calling Liberals “Snowflakes” for being overly sensitive to abominable speech, are fleeing by the flag-waving truckload to a website that unlike FB, allows them to literally filter out words and thereby ideas, that they don’t like, or more importantly, are openly terrified by the thought of. If there is a saving grace, its now knowing with no uncertainty just whom the most hateful of our fellow citizens are by their own declaration, and for that, we should offer them our gratitude for their self-identification, so that we may avoid them in the future.

Please note that I said “avoid”, and not “ignore”, for if left unsupervised and unregulated, Evil and Ignorance tend to grow unhindered when in the dark, and we’ve all seen enough horror movies to know what happens when somebody’s curiosity finally drives then to go see what’s been making all that noise in the unlit basement, haven’t we? What we as individuals, and America as a whole, needs to understand is that this exodus is really not a retreat, so much as a regroup, and the consequences of such will rear its ugly head down the road, and not long after we‘ve come to believe that the hate-mongering mythical Hydra has been laid to rest. And while you think I might be referencing this particular Hydra;

I’m actually thinking of this one;

given how Parler’s newest devotees were (and still are) so eagerly willing to blindly accept the marching orders of a craven not fit enough to look at the Cosmic Cube AKA: The Tesseract, much less hold it.  And sure, while that’s an issue of his lacking personal character, it’s also due to the fact that his hands are so damn tiny to begin with.

[SPOILER: It so does not go well for him, so take a note, Donnie. Just saying.]

What’s equally parts pathetic, amusing, and somewhat terrifying, is the reality that he and his cult still think that they can retain their semblance of governing power by falling back on the classics they’ve employed since the 2016 election-  threats of violence, judicial interference, unfounded charges of voter fraud, or in the most recent example of their literal disconnection, sticking their heads in the proverbial tar-sands, and fantasizing that Trump actually won reelection, despite the round of recounts proving otherwise.

This course of action was to be fair, not unexpected from the Cult of Personality that Trump has fostered, but it does prove that the truly hard work facing the new administration of swiftly repairing what damage has been so successfully wrought by Trump and his enablers, hangs above their heads as if it were the Sword of Damocles. This in my opinion, is exactly what the GOP planned when it became apparent they’d have to give back control of the country whose fellow citizens they maligned, terrorized, and outright murdered thousands  of, through incompetence and hubris.

Rest assured however, that his base doesn’t, and never will, see it that way. For in their perverse estimation, they are the true “victims” in regards to their current state of affairs, which they themselves helped create, and continue to feed, even at the risk of their own personal safety, whether that translates as ethically, financially, or spiritually. In fact, as the untenability of their situation has become more crystalline to even the dimmest among them, their desperation to avoid its oncoming fallout becomes ever increasingly more frantic.

Witness the “patriots” protesting outside ballot counting stations, their “Million Man [more like 10K, actually] MAGA March” in DC, and the continuing bleating about launching a “Civil War”,  and that tells you just how frightened they really are about themselves being cast aside in favor of the core values that they long ago turned their backs on, if not leveraged their souls in lieu of.

Even more indicative of this collective meltdown were the postings on social media as the tide turned against Trump, even in states that he once had a political death grip on. And like any cornered and wounded animal that might have internet access, his base lashed out with all the classic hits, such as: “Voter fraud”- none proven or detected. “Fake news”– it’s amazing we never had any until we got a fake president, huh? “Illegal votes being counted”– also, no proof of this. “Dishonest and corrupt media” – say the people at FOX, the paragon of honesty in journalism. “Mail-in voting is unsafe”– which is why the majority of Trumps cabinet, including Trump himself, used it to cast their ballot. “George Soros paid…”- I wish, as I could really use the extra money. “Hillary did…”– no, she did not.

And in a blast from the past, the favorite GOP boogeyman of the last twelve years, 44th President of the United States, Barrack Obama, who is allegedly responsible for the worst crime in the history of politics, that being “Obamagate”. Even though nobody, including his accusers, can explain exactly what so-called crimes were actually committed, and against whom. But that didn’t stop my newest BFF Ken Cykala from reaching into his Deep State gift bag, and pulling out a meme that has literally nothing to do about anything, because when it comes to spotlighting what happens when you stuff vanilla-scented bigotry and a stuck caps key into an Aaryan sausage casing, and let it loose upon the world entire, Ken’s the poster child for the cause:

Ken: “WHY DOES OBAMA HATE AMERICA AND EVERYONE SEEMS OKAY WITH THAT, BUT TRUMP LOVES AMERICA AND PEOPLE HATE THAT!”

AB: I’m not sure Ken, maybe it has something to do with the fact that Obama wanted to improve education, end wage inequality, grant healthcare access, solidify civil rights and justice equality, and promote our image abroad as a beacon of hope, versus your losing one-termer mango man-child who purposefully did the opposite, due solely to his spiteful obsessiveness with a Black guy whose legacy he couldn’t surpass, using both of his freakishly small hands and a truckload of debunked propaganda.

Weirdly, I wasn’t aware that quadrupling the national deficit, using the Oval Office as an unhinged bully pulpit, hiring your unqualified kids to key positions, installing boot-licking sycophants to run cover for your illegal endeavors, praising dictators, saluting their generals, overlooking the murder of an American resident by the Saudis, lauding NAZIs and White supremacists, ignoring your presidential responsibilities, refusing to address bounties placed on our soldiers by his Russian puppet-master, lying nonstop, imprisoning children in cages, and oh yes…

Mismanaging and ignoring a pandemic which [at this time] has killed close to a quarter-million Americans, and forced the permanent closure of over 100k American small businesses, was an act of “love”. If this is how Trump expresses his sense of romantic affection, I can only imagine the true horror unveiled when he “hates” something with every fiber of his flatulent ferret-topped being. It’s way past the time Ken, when you should have realized that he’s an abusive boyfriend, and you’re just one in a long line of disposable side-pieces that he loves to smack around when his Ego gets bruised. That is, when he condescends to notice you’re even alive in the first place.

There’s been several queries bandied about regarding what Trump and his fans endgame truly may be, but it’s not that hard to figure out- he wants to stay out of jail and remain drunk on power, and they basically want to see that happen for him, even if it comes at the cost of their own (but preferably others) safety and/or wellbeing. Need proof? Just read Ken’s recent declaration below that he’s perfectly okay with our nation and its citizenry, which includes HIMSELF, being put at grave risk, because he seriously believes his mango-man-crush was treated far worse than anybody else in presidential history.

To quote: “Will no other President (the Bushes, Clinton, Obama) were treated the way Trump was treated.” Misspelling aside, it’s almost embarrassing to point out that Lincoln, Garfield, and Kennedy might disagree with that, having been assassinated and all, but I guess he also thinks right-wing media and its pundits referring to the Clintons as serial murderers while their audience went on to post images online depicting Obama being lynched and declaring he wasn’t a true American, was what Ken considers the height of civility, huh?

I’m not entirely sure what Ken’s parents did to him during his formative years to justify his continuously embarrassing them in public, but I’m starting to think that particular debt’s been paid back in full, with compounded interest, by the very nature of how this sack of rancid milk continues on in his bigotry. But here’s the rub that Ken and his kind either don’t realize, or want to accept, and it is best phrased by the character of Tony Stark, billionaire playboy/industrialist and Marvel superhero Iron Man, in a cinematic exchange with Asgardian villain Loki, in the midst of a pivotal battle taking place in NYC:

“You’re missing the point! There’s no throne, there is no version of this where you come out on top. Maybe your army comes and maybe it’s too much for us but it’s all on you. Because if we can’t protect the Earth, you can be damned well sure we’ll avenge it!”


As the sadly not at all singular example of Ken clearly proves, there’s a lot of hateful Red Hat Brigade meatheads still out there, who may even possibly be prone to violence, just waiting for another opportunity to present itself, but in the end, they are inconsequential to what this country is and what it really represents. And no matter how they protest that their president is or has been treated “unfairly”, the truth is that he has not only brought all of his woes upon himself, but could also care less about whom he uses or hurts to save himself, and he’s proven it almost every day for the last four years, without pause or redemption.

However, there is a positive slant to all we have experienced, and the recent election cements that optimistic POV of mine, past reproach. Sure, he should have been defeated in a brutally crushing landslide, and the fact he did not is worrisome, but despite all the threats, gaslighting, political intrigues, and attempted voter suppression by the GOP, the system still worked. Even when faced with the multiple bogus court challenges and pointless ballot recounts that Trump tyrannically demanded, in a a pathetically spiraling attempt to stave off the inevitable, which is the unarguable fact that:

HE LOST, YOU CANDY-ASSED SNOWFLAKES, AND COME JANUARY 21ST, JOE WILL BE YOUR PRESIDENT, WITH A MIXED-RACE VP AS A BACKUP, AND THERE ISN’T S**T YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT. NOT NOW. NOT EVER. AND REGARDLESS OF WHAT THREATS YOU MAY FANTASIZE ABOUT, GET USED TO AT LEAST FOUR YEARS OF US REMINDING YOU OF IT, EVERY DAY.

TO NOTE:
HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST. HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST, HE LOST.  

And thanks to his unwarranted recount demands, we got to see that event happen over and over again, which in my book, never truly gets old.

Please feel free to cope with it in any manner that you wish, as by fleeing FB, you’ve willingly ticked off the “most cowardly” box on the safe-space-snowflake checklist, so what’s one more embarrassingly revealing flaw of character on the pile you’ve worked so hard to previously establish? Not surprising however, is just how many of these Rethuglican refugees from Reality have also as of yet, not deleted their FB accounts, despite their assertion that they’re leaving if for good. The reason for this has nothing to do with keeping in touch with family or friends, or even wanting to stay tenuously involved in the relevant discussion taking place, it’s all about them getting their daily fix of acrimonious endorphin.

Understand that by surrounding themselves with like-minded individuals, the odds of their coming away with an “I owned the Libs today” story is close to zero, thanks to the false equivalence that they themselves have constructed, and they need that interaction to add a sense of depth to their otherwise empty and soulless lives. Without that, they truly are, and most certainly have, absolutely nothing of note to either offer themselves or brag about to their comrades at large, and they know it, which is why they refuse to surrender that tenuous thread, regardless of how it contradicts their so-called principles

Piece of advice, my Warriors of Wussiness? The threat to you isn’t coming from the outside, because betrayal isn’t an act set in motion by your enemies. Given yet even more of the hypocrisy they’ve become infamous for, I can’t wait to watch what happens when these political piranhas realize with slowly dawning horror that the calls from the masked killer were coming from inside their doublewide the entire time. These Disciples of Douchefer have not only started eating their own, they look forward to doing so, despite the fact it’s what will lead to their ultimate destruction in the end. Let’s face it, you know things have gotten weird when it’s the Trumpers who are the ones chanting “FOX Sucks!” louder than the liberals.

There’s numerous jokes going around about betting squares regarding what the next cultural morass of 2020 would be, and I personally went all in on the murder hornet thing, but Trumpites going after the openly propagandistic arm of their cravenly Cheeto-in-Chief, but here we are, sans the murder hornets, but painfully overstocked in the crazy-as-f**k cultist department.

But then and once again, since these are the people behind the million-moron movement, maybe we as a society, shouldn’t be all that surprised that they may not only have a few screws loose, but possibly may have also over-tightened a few select ones as well, now should we?

That last image says it all, I think: mentally obese, fueled by jingoistic paranoia, and blinded by the faux aura of a person so repellent, that even the unlucky residents of the 5th Bolgia in the *8th Circle of Hell, don’t want to be associated with him.
*[In Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno”, Malebolge is the name for the eighth circle of Hell. When translated from its native Italian ino English, the titler stands for “evil ditches”. It is described in Dante’s Inferno as a large, funnel-shaped cavern, which has been divided into ten concentrical circular trenches or ditches, each dedicated to a particular sin.

The 5th ditch is filled with boiling tar. and is reserved for barrators, who committed the sins of graft by profiting from their political offices. They are to remain eternally submerged within the boiling tar or else face being stabbed by demons armed with pitchforks. Wow, Cartoons actually got that part right… who would have guessed that?]

But this putrid pack is not as cohesive as it once was, as evidenced by the numerous advocacy-based groups of either former or still current Republicans who’ve not only taken to condemning him publicly, but like *The Lincoln Project, have also undertaken to directly attacking him using the very same media he both loves and abuses to endlessly manipulate his base of fetid offal, most of whom can pass as human, thanks to their closet full of badly-tailored human skin suits.
*[The Lincoln Project is an American political action committee assembled in 2019 by a group of both current and former Republicans, whose goal was to thwart the re-election of our currently refusing to concede, Loser-in-Grief, Donald Trump, along with the other complicit Repugs who were running to maintain their positions as well. Adding to their metaphorical flip of the bird to Trump as it were, the committee announced its endorsement of President-elect Joe Biden, in April of 2020.]

Now, while some political pundits have decreed this as a moral victory for the ages, let’s not forget for any amount of time, that these very same people waited almost four years to reinstall their cojones and ethical compass. Why this is so, may present itself as a matter of conjecture for the crowd at large, the reason for this is definitely quite clear to me, thanks to my sense of inherent cynicism. Granted, in the past, it’s true that most Republicans would openly vow they’d only vote a straight ticket with some degree of pride, it’s fairly obvious that most participants involved with The Lincoln Project are willingly exploring their Bi(den)-curious side as of late, an exploration of self that I find rather insulting at worst, and disingenuous at best.

Let me explain this pessimistic assessment, if I may. As I see it, if you still openly self-identify as a Republican, and haven’t been protesting this morally decrepit administration and the Cheeto Führer who’s lead it follows, then you’ve either been asleep or distantly complicit. In my opinion, most of these so called Bravehearts are actually indeed, the most scurrilous of turncoats, who are not to be trusted. Republicans have always tended to be a demographic that along with modern-day so-called Christians, truly don’t give a damn about anyone or anything, until it affects them personally, and only then, will they go after the issue with the same fervor that they display when they see that their gay neighbors across the street are flying a Pride flag in their front yard.

In my personal opinion, this current crop of people chanting “It wasn’t us”, are no better than Jeff Flake, Mitt Romney, or John McCain- three morally ambiguous politicos who all grew a spine either on their way out the proverbial door of governmental employment and into the private sector, or off this planet, as McCain did. Once Trump made their lives or political futures uncomfortable or untenable, they couldn’t jump in fast enough to “protect America”.

To be clear, I am in no way attacking McCain’s military service record, or tarnishing his atrocious experience as a POW. After all, unlike Trump, he not only answered the call of duty when asked to, he honored it far beyond what was expected of him. That said, I truly despised him as a politician, given his willingness to overlook certain abominable aspects of his party, his bravery in wartime notwithstanding.

What these so-called people of conscience are trying to protect first and foremost, before the rest of us or even this country are taken into consideration, is their social status, political capital, and personal reputations, and that’s it. Yes, there have been more than a few who’ve been fighting Herr Comb-over since day one, but the majority of them have not, opting instead to sit on the sidelines, nervously waiting to see which side emerged victorious, before choosing whom to ally themselves with for the final push. In other words: too little, too late.

I’m glad you found your keenly dropped sense of patriotism my faux Americans, but you can take that newfound buyer’s remorse of yours, and shove it sideways, because you weren’t unaware of who he really was when he slithered in. You were tested. And you failed. Not just your country, and your fellow citizens, but everyone you claim to care about, and yourself as well. I’m sure that you feel that absolution should be granted upon you, now that you’ve shown up far too late on this side of History’s fence, but I’m also as certain, that if Trump had gotten his way, you’d still be wearing his hat, waving his flag, and chanting “Lock Her Up!” with all the passion demanded of a lobotomized monkey at one pf his *erbärmlich Nuremberg-esque rallies.
*[“wretched”]

As far as I’m concerned, you should never be allowed to have a seat at the adult table again, because you proved you weren’t mature or selfless enough to warrant it in the first place. But look on the bright side… at least you’re free of the responsibility and burden of ever having to be trusted again by anyone whomever was naïve enough to place their faith in you to begin with.

So, to recap… a multitude of candy-assed dickless demagogues who’ve been screaming “Get over It!” since 2016, ignore their own edict, willingly flee to a safe-space so overly padded and protected against the possibility of their being exposed to reality and opposing points of view that one could fall upon it from a low-earth orbit and not suffer a scratch, as they post memes and false narratives from under the Internets bed that they seriously believe will reverse the outcome of the Presidential confirmation.

All of this, as their Cheeto-tinted Jim Jones refuses to concede an election that he lost fair and square, and amusingly, after demanding recounts… LOST BY EVEN MORE VOTES, YET AGAIN, which let’s face it, makes this the most glorious case of reinforcing the self-destruction of one’s Ego that has ever been witnessed. Prior to, and continuing during this mass exodus, a smaller group of Republicans decided to publicly step across party lines, out of fear for either possibly being held complicit for their roles in the enabling of Trump, or due to the resultant political residue his long-overdue fall may have upon their careers in the long-term.

Did I miss anything? No? Cool. Just wanted to make sure I was on point, as when it comes to the activities of the Petite Penii Stadium Patriots, a wary eye is necessary, In a pack, they may present as a snarling mass of muscle, but when faced mano-a-MAGA? Blubbering bigoted balls of bloviating. Considering that even his previously loyal attack terrier FOX News is calling out the lies he propagates without fail, it just might be about time for someone to go check the current temperature in Hell… just a thought. I’ve said it before, and I know I have to say it again, but I don’t get nearly enough credit for not having a backyard dotted with shallow graves… yet, that is.

However, these rats hiding in the theoretical shadows of the s**thouse they call Parler, fail to compare to the Mini-louse currently hiding within the walls of the people’s house, safely behind guards and barricades, neither of which will protect him from America’s judgement come January 20th of 2021. Moreover, I am also really enjoying the fact that every day during his numerous hours spent utilizing his “Executive Time”, he literally gets to witness the metaphorical wall being quickly erected between him and his rapidly diminishing power in regards to a position of authority he never should have been given access to in the first place. Not only did he lose the election and the popular vote by a margin of 6M, his far better respected opponent won by the EXACT NUMBER of Electoral votes that Trump did when he “defeated” Hillary Clinton in 2016.

At the time, he lauded the achievement as a “tremendous win”, but now that it was shared by his desired replacement? Well obviously, it must be rampant “voter fraud”, right? Even worse, his hand-picked judges are ruling against him left and right, reporters once cowed by his bluster are openly mocking him to his face, his once-loyal subordinates and lackeys are jumping ship, his main media squeeze FOX no longer kisses his ass, and even the OAN and his Twitter account are being threatened by the very same platforms that once let these both run roughshod.

Can you even imagine what that must be like to experience? It has to be akin to a condemned prisoner watching the local townspeople slowly erect the gallows that they’re eventually and happily, going to hang you on. And worse, not only is it going to be televised worldwide, but feature entertainment and celebrities that to this day, won’t even acknowledge the fact you invited them first to your housewarming party four years ago. That’s gotta hurt, to say the very least.

Man, when even Nickelback or Andy Dick won’t return your phone calls, you my friend, are done.

Irrespective of the fact that the light at the end of the tunnel is Lady Liberty’s torch, this collection of covidiots and drunken regret still maintains he will remain in power, notwithstanding of what Constitutional Law and the votes cast by their fellow Americans say. It’s not that they can’t accept his loss because of their limited intellect, it’s that they don’t want to accept his loss because it challenges their limited intellect. They can claim America is on the road to ruin or Hell, which as we all know, is paved with cruel intentions, but it’s all for naught. In the end, their vision of America is not the America that will evolve from its time spent annealing in the hellfire that Trump and his followers spread far and wide as they did their idiocy.

Speaking only for myself, I love the concept of an America where people are provided with the basics of what they need to be happy and taken care of. Access to affordable healthcare. Social programs for the needy. The end of corporate welfare. Universal basic income. And the rich finally paying their fair share of taxes too, an idea which should also be applied to churches. People who vote have to pay taxes, I see no reason why religious organizations who attempt to influence the laws of this land shouldn’t do the same. Unlike the alt-right gaslighting us all regarding the “evils” of our society taking care of each other, rather than corporate masters, as they whip up false narratives about minorities, I’m a big fan of what America already has to offer, beside those things we’ve all come to take for granted.

Things such as: a multicultural society that has not only brought us the underappreciated gift of taco trucks, but forward progress and unlimited diversity as well. I love that there are towns where drag queens read storybooks to kids in public libraries, and nobody gives a damn. I love that American atheism has never killed anyone, or brainwashed people into believing that they are truly moral only if they hate somebody else or their lifestyle, without logical cause. I love that I and everybody else, can write or say whatever we like regarding this country and its actions, because let’s face it- every now and then, we need to call Truth to Power to those who are supposed to serve us, and not the other way around.

And I love the fact that even when grave mistakes in judgement are made by the citizens of this country, they can still be reversed by harnessing the will of the People, as this past election just proved. However, that still won’t change the minds or adjust the attitudes of the 73M + who still voted for the man who is already being accurately viewed as America’s worst president, and regardless of what proof is presented, their slavish faith in him will remain as indissoluble as the first time they witnessed him and his mail-order bride coming down that golden escalator.

But despite this pessimism of mine, we should still take heart as to what the positives are that this seemingly inexhaustible mass of mental-morbidity will provide us over the years to come:

Cautionary tales. Endless jokes. Sentient walking punchlines. Proof as to why libraries, public education, and birth control access should all be funded 100%. Even more damning evidence highlighting exactly why the Evangelical Marys’ of MAGAlene should be kept from ever accessing the vital machinery of creating American policy. And most certainly, the end to the use of the maxim that “Anybody can be President”, as if anything, the boundaries of which, have been stretched far past the point of what was originally intended by the Founding Fathers.

What I am anticipating however, is the apt to be convoluted rationalization by these covidiots as to how the candidate they painted as wholly senile if not unpopular with the American people, still managed somehow, to oversee a shadowy cabal of conspirators plotting to “steal” the election away from the trustworthy man of the sheeple who once claimed in regards to the popular vote of the race he eventually won, that 3M people voted illegally, and that he had proof of this, yet for some odd reason, never presented it to the public.

My guess is that this evidence is being kept in the very same place where his marriage vows and tax records are stored.

Literally, I cannot wait to see how that desperate gambit plays out, given the fact that Trump’s legal challenges team, assembled by repeatedly watching select late-night-tv commercials, has either been laughed or rebuked harshly out of court no less than 35 times. Thirty-five occasions BTW, where they have yet to provide any proof of the voter fraud that their terrified toddler keeps insisting cost him winning the election that he and his boot-licks maintains he won by “a lot”, no matter what the numerous closely observed recounts and court losses have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt.

But one strange aside… despite Trump’s unfounded claims of voter fraud, that term has yet to be used in any of the bogus cases he’s set forth before the courts, and even his own attorneys have consistently played the “inconsistencies” card when questioned by judges, rather than prove the case for what Trump publicly says they’re fighting.

Why is that, do you think?

Well, it’s pretty simple, overall. First, there are penalties to egregiously bearing false witness in open court, but not so much in public, as long as you stop short of what could be considered actionable slander. Second, Trump’s base of red-meat fans couldn’t be as easily dog-whistled into a state of mindless and unquestioning frenzy if they knew (or believed) the actuality of what had really occurred, and third, it is most assuredly certain that he couldn’t charm his brainwashed sheeple to willingly open their checkbooks to finance his lifestyle one last time if he conceded defeat without giving them a scapegoat first.

Leopards can’t change their spots, and grifters can’t stop grifting, and all that. One thing I do get however, is their love for the conspiracy theory that Trumps team of ambulance speed-bumps have been touting as the “truth”. Not because it fills in hypothetical gaps with any credibility, but because it’s so bats**t crazy, it can’t be proven one way or the other. Oh wait. Yes, it can actually be disproven quite easily, because there’s no evidence to support the claim whatsoever, and as I noted a moment ago, IT’S COMPLETELY F**KING INSANE to start with.

This steaming pile of a Giuliani fever-dream that is being disseminated, is that the 2020 election was stolen because a left-wing software firm, connected to Hugo Chavez the deceased (since 2013) dictator of Venezuela, abetted by China and with the willing participation of a handful of set-in-place Democrats and disloyal Republicans, illegally switched hundreds of thousands of pro-Trump votes via a system utilizing corrupted software, thereby illegally swinging the election over to Biden instead.

One recently dismissed (and just as quickly disavowed) member of Trump’s legal team Sidney Powell, went so far as to claim that the algorithm” concocted by said conspirators, “broke down” because Trump’s public support was so strong, that Democrats were forced to use a far more insidious Hail Mary pass of sorts, altering the vote with mail-in ballots that were “slipped in” during the dark of night. Trump himself went on to dump even more fuel on the conflagration that was started under his direction, when he granted a 45-minute call-in interview to his long-term on-again, off-again friend with boot-licking benefits, Maria Bartiromo.

The interview, which could only be charitably be described as “unhinged’ at best, as Trump railed against everyone and everything under the sun, took place during her show “Sunday Morning Futures”, airing of course, on FOX, serving as the atypical sewer conduit for Trump’s lies, half-truths, and expected level of self-aggrandizement that would make even Gene Simmons blush, as Trump dropped yet another one of his never-to-be-proven falsehoods regarding the election he fairly lost, that being: “This is total fraud, And how the FBI and Department of Justice… I don’t know… maybe they’re involved, but how people are getting away with this stuff…it’s unbelievable.”

So, the people that are supposedly involved in this, the biggest political crime in American history, are as follows: a software company funded by American capitalists, China, a handful of set-in-place Democrats and disloyal Republicans, the elected officials of several states, ranging from common poll workers to governors, and a dictator that’s been dead for seven years, and all of this was done in plain sight, but yet somehow left no actionable evidence, as if it were a surprise pop quiz involving Schrodinger’s cat.

And oh yes… the Media is complicit as well, because it won’t report these unfounded claims wholesale without seeing some evidence first.

Regardless of what Reality, the courts, or the ballot trail says and proves, his cult will always play the victims of cruel circumstance, and will continue to ham-fistedly defend their world view to bolster their collective delusion, and nothing short of a lobotomy will change that. And we should all just accept that we’re going to be stuck with these jingoistic jackasses for far too long after the dust from Trump’s flaming train wreck of a presidency has settled upon the sticky floor of the porn shop bathroom stall where his Presidential Library will be located.

Be it far from me to dare suggest that we spend any of our free time in the future engaged in trying to annoy, torment, pester, plague, badger, harass, heckle, persecute, irk, bullyrag, hex, vex, beset, bother, tease, belittle, bother, or taunt those poor pathetic wretches who may still be sporting his hat, his flag, or his bumper stickers with pride, for I’d like to think that as a civilized society, we’re above the trappings of being or acting that basic. Wallowing is their niche, and I say we leave them up to their necks in it.

Sure, we’ll still have to keep an eye on them even as they hide under Parler’s skirt, but like all movements abhorrent to what makes us both human and Americans, the moment they rear their ugly as sin faces and start vocalizing their dumber than dirt protestations, they’ll end up spitting out said inanity through a mouthful of what used to be their once firmly-rooted teeth, because not only will we be ready, we’ll be waiting, fully armed and forewarned.

But not until we’ve sold them all of our gently used “Not My President” memorabilia, and turning a hefty profit, of course. There’s no law after all saying we can’t be pragmatic, now is there? After all, it would be the purest use of the capitalism they claim to adore so much, and I’m always up for using the common ground against a common enemy, so there is that.

However, I would like to end this newest of screeds on a somewhat comedic note in reference to bracing for the ongoing idiocy we’ll be dealing with for years to come, and in order to do that, I’m going to once again highlight some wholly unintentional humor recently posted by my favorite example of what an Aaryan Nation toy company might produce as an inaction figure, and yes, I meant that deliberately. Let’s welcome our honored guest with the same warmth as one of those cross-burning fires he’d happily use to cook a hot dog, because in the end, while he may be an alleged racist, he’s also quite the pragmatist… ladies and gentleman, I present to you one more time, my favorite bloviating bigot, Mr. Ken Cykala!!!

I tells ya- this guy is never anything less than a cornucopia of cluelessly tone-deaf comedy, and the best part? He doesn’t even have to work at it. I’d even go so far as to suggest that his father would be so proud, if only Ken knew who that sorry bastard actually was,

Yup… racism in America was on its last legs, and facing its own mortality, so close to being dead in fact, that we as a nation, were able to openly mock it in a satirical film released in- wait for it… February of NINETEEN SEVENTY-FOUR. It’s truly amazing what you can learn when you unplug your brain and open up your ears to the rambling of bigoted inbreds, isn’t it? I simply had no idea that between 1974 and 2008, racism was a “thing” no longer, due to the fact that a comedic film’s tongue-in-cheek take on the issue had dispensed it a nearly-fatal blow.

Just like how the propagation of Nazism ended with the release of “The Great Dictator” in October of 1940, and the well-known fact that we all breathed a collective sigh of relief when the Cold War and the threat of the USSR was stopped dead in its tracks when “Dr. Strangelove” saw the light of a brand new day in 1964, but the best was yet to come, when the scourge of organized crime became nothing more than a memory, thanks to 1972’s “The Godfather”. And when one takes into account how the mythical Overlook Hotel was destroyed in the Television mini-series adaptation of Stephen King’s “The Shining”, I can only assume that malevolent ghosts are also something we no longer need worry about either, thank Odin.

Who among us can forget that breathtaking moment when “American X”, premiered in 1998, and the decades-long reign of terror foisted upon America by its homegrown White domestic terrorists ceased? I guess the KKK members that openly endorsed and embraced Trumps run for president and subsequent racist policies and stance, are all just enthusiastic reenactors of historical drama, and all those Confederate flags we see at his rallies, belong to die-hard fans of the band Alabama.

But just for the sake of playing Devil’s Advocate, here’s a few minor events that happened during this bucolic period of the Utopian racial harmony that Ken falsely ascribes to, starting with:

the Boston desegregation busing crisis, NAZIs openly marching in Skokie, Illinois, a series of racial-based riots in Chicago’s Marquette Park neighborhood, NYC’s Blackout riots, the murder of José Campos Torres at the hands of the Houston police,
which resulted in an all-out riot one year later.

There was also; the riot in Miami following the acquittal of four Miami-Dade Police officers in the death of an African-American man by the name of Arthur McDuffie, the deliberate bombing and subsequent partial destruction by the Philadelphia Police of a residential neighborhood occupied by an African-American militant group known as MOVE, and a truckload of other incidents that I won’t / can’t list here, due to space and time constraints, if not the fact I still need some semblance of my sanity to remain somewhat unblemished.

What’s even more hypocritically hilarious however, is the well-documented history I’ve previously presented here in Artbitch regarding the numerous bigoted statements that Ken kas posted online, that underscore the fact that he doesn’t care about actual racism, he just wants us to believe he does, so that he can continue to use the issue as cover for him to push his agenda that Whites are the true victims of it. Let me sum up, if I may. Ken is not only wrong as usual, he also once again, shows just why his mother should have swallowed, and failing that, why his father would have been better off buying top dollar drinks for the other girl he first saw at the end of the dive bar he was slumming in.

Sure, I may have discovered all of this easily accessible history just by doing a 28-second Google search, but I can’t expect Ken to do the same, since he’s been ever so busy building his “no liberals allowed” pillow fort in the ever so brave reinforced fortifications of Parler. I’m not entirely sure what one should offer to such a cravenly individual hiding far as he can from Reality as a housewarming gift, but I’m sure a cartoon-themed nightlight to keep the scary black people from sneaking up on him and stealing his binky while he sleeps, would probably be the safest bet.

Do they actually make one that looks like an Aaryan SpongeBob? I have so much research to do on Amazon, methinks. But don’t worry- I kick serious ass when it comes to my giving people what they need. Oh wait, my bad. I meant to say that I kick ass when it comes to telling people what they need to hear, and not what they want to hear. It’s truly a gift. In all honesty, I actually sort of suck at the whole present thing, but I’m sure Ken appreciates what I have to say nonetheless, even if I show up sans desired gift at the front door of his pussified Parler palace in pink.

I just have to ask: how goddamn f**king stupid do you have to seriously be, even when you already identify as holding a racist worldview, to give credence to the belief that the blatant bigotry generated and displayed with great hostility towards an African-American, was the “fault” of the very same person, and yet still claim with a straight face, that prior to this, that America was no longer suffering from racism? How dare a Black man be legally elected by the will of the people into a position of power that for 232 years, has been the province of White men alone?

The nerve of that guy! Next thing you know, he’ll be asking for the right to vote and to share your water fountain as well. I don’t know what concoction of chemicals or prescribed drugs Ken may be allegedly abusing in order to come to this dizzying corruption of pure logic that he has, but whatever they ostensibly are, I would opine that they make Crack look like a cheese danish, by way of comparison. Ken is to the promotion of racial harmony what Donald Trump is to the showcasing of marriage fidelity in my opinion, so his take on what constitutes it, is about as valuable as my advice as a partial amputee is in relation to teaching the art of Irish step dancing.

But that’s sort of my point. No matter what we do, we’re stuck with these morons, their ignorance, and even worse- their conspiracy theories and unfettered access to the internet. So, we can either get pointlessly angry over it, or get comfortable laughing hard at the absurdly evil, as we should.

They want to still attend their pathetic Ego rallies starring a ranting packet of insecure and delusional Kool-Ade? Let them. They want to flee to Parler like the candy-asses they are? Help them pack, and clean up FB in the process. Just remember to keep a wary eye, and if they dare stick their heads above the merde they so happily wallow in, feel free to drop an ACME anvil on it, and move on. In the end, we’re all going to be fine. After all, this country survived both World Wars, the Great depression, and the rebooted Mission Impossible TV series, so the track record for success is already there for us to follow.

At best, these sub-Americans are the newest *“Poisson d’avril” recipientsof our upended political landscape, and at worst, a self-replicating cancer that still may threaten our far too fractured society for decades to come. A thought that should chill the communal soul, if given more than a passing glance, and one we should definitely not ignore at the risk of own peril. This fermented in the dark before, and most certainly will do it again, if left to the machinations of those who would rather take the easier path of just ignoring it outright, as they so happily did prior to the election of Barrack Obama, the eternal boogeyman of the GOP, and the Slenderman of Trumps nightmares.
*[From the French: “April Fish”, which were pranks played on those persons who refused to adopt the new Gregorian calendar introduced by the Council of Trent in 1563, and which is widely considered as the origin for the April Fools’ Holiday we now celebrate.The term comes from the prank of placing paper fish on their backs, symbolizing both a young and easily caught fish, as well as a gullible person.]

But to quote from the James bond movie Quantum of Solace, as a means to craft a relevant analogy for the situation at hand;

Mr. White: “You really don’t knowanything about us.It’s so amusing because…we are on the other side, thinking, ‘The Ml6, the CIA, they’re looking over our shoulders. ‘They’re listening to our conversations.’ And the truth is you don’t even know we exist.”

M: “Well, we do now, Mr. White, and we’re quick learners.”

Mr. White; “Oh, really? Well, then, the first thing you should know about us… is that we have people everywhere.”

However, when it comes to the pro-Trump, pro-conspiracy, and pro-crazier-than-a-s**thouse-rat movements within this country, that’s the gospel truth. They really DO have people everywhere, and up until recently, we really didn’t know anything about them either, past the point of accepting without question that they were just this side of being full-blown sociopathic twits. And that was on our best day, I might add. But now? We know their playbook. We know their moves. We know how they mobilize. We know their tropes.

And of most importance, we now know exactly how to assist them being the cause of their own self-destruction, by our allowing them to weave the very same rope that they’ll inevitably garrote themselves with, secure in the delusion that we aren’t paying attention again. All we ever need do is keep the light of what is the reality of things shining upon them, and just like the roaches that they emulate, they’ll either scatter to the four winds, or run off a cliff, as lemmings of lesser intellect have been rumored to do. Sure, they can attempt to run and hide in the shadows of the Web as they did before, but this time, that ploy won’t be nearly as effective as it once was, and they only have themselves to dually thank and blame for that.

In the end, the easiest way to keep an eye on your enemies, both real and perceived, is if they’re all conveniently gathered in one place, so gratitude must be extended to Parler and all the other sites catering to its ilk, because you just made that task a thousand times easier, if not more fun for those of us who truly enjoy shoving the Disciples of Ignorance back under the rocks they originally slithered out from. Harshly as all legalities would allow, that is, as I for one, wouldn’t want to trigger any of these so-called Americans into launching a tirade they poorly cribbed off of a bumper sticker.

But in their limited defense, tirades and running away to self-isolating safe-spaces is all they’ve ever had. And being cowards, it’s the only thing they’ve ever been good at.

“The Seven Social Sins are: Wealth without work. Pleasure without conscience. Knowledge without character. Commerce without morality. Science without humanity. Worship without sacrifice. Politics without principle.” -Frederick Lewis Donaldson


Gentrification prefers Blands. PT.5 (Money for Nothing)

“Make your marketing so useful people would pay you for it.” – Jay Baer

Hello Blogiteers!

It’s been one of those years where the hits just keep coming, do they not? First, my former employer decided at the beginning of last summer that we were “too slow” at work and cut my hours in half, right before they went and hired a full-time person without even thinking of offering me (the person with seniority) the option to restore any of those lost hours, which is perfectly fine, since the general sentiment in the workplace at that time was that the head of our so-called out-of-state boss should be displayed much in the manner of how William Wallace’s was, after his minor disagreement with the English.

However, while that shared attitude provided cold comfort in regards to the loss of a warm, if pathetically small paycheck, I’m assuming as only one can, that I’m apparently independently wealthy and don’t require the trivialities that come with everyday life, such as the ability to pay for my Ding Dongs. Or electricity. Or rent. In addition, the company I found myself regrettably associated with also felt that its perfectly fine to be late with said paycheck four times in three months.

Thank God I have that rather lucrative sideline business running 80’s mix-tapes to the Sandinistas, or I’d be screwed. And as to the nature of my dismissal, I’m rather proud of the fact that I wasn’t fired for poor performance, or being rude to a customer, or even that old go-to of running naked through the corporate hallways wearing nothing but sparkly gold go-go boots and what I have been told is a dazzlingly warm smile. Nope, when it came right down to brass tacks, I was fired for being something even worse… a diabetic.

Hold on just a Ding Dong eating minute, you say- isn’t firing someone for having a chronic disease illegal? Why yes… yes it is. And my former supervisor may be the only person on this fk’d up planet who doesn’t know that. I won’t go into the details, as we’d be here all day, but in essence, my former supervisor stated rather directly that I was, and I quote: “a burden on the business”, and that I “should go on disability”. After that, the dialogue dissolved into some rather unpleasant language more suited for an 1890’s cathouse, and due to the fact I don’t generally work blue, it won’t be repeated here. But if you’re currently surmising that most of that lexicon rhymed with “flucker”, you’d definitely be on the right path.

As you might suspect, I have a few key issues with this flawed perspective, and I’ll start with this amazingly rude and wildly inaccurate assessment. First, I’m not disabled- to me, that means that I’m physically challenged and require the use of a wheelchair, a cane or a walker… anything along those lines. And to be clear, I’m not dissing those who have those issues, and yet nail it like a badass. I’m just not in that unique category, and I hope never to be.

Second, while I’m observably comfortable talking about my illness up to a limited point, it still remains a rather private issue among my friends and intimate confidants, so when it came to a superior freely offering opinions as if they had the right to do so, that’s where I draw the freaking line. Since this particular person took on the mantle from my previous (and way more professional) ex-boss, I have endured a litany of harassment in regards to my chronic illness. The suggestion that I needed to go on disability was a consistent irritation in regards to doing my job, and had been going on for months by the time I was fired.

A note for later recall- if there’s one thing I truly despise, it’s having to listen to the opinions of internet scholars and doctors, especially given that I’m the one who since my diagnosis 19 years ago, has been walking around and doing the labor within this somewhat defective meat-suit.

To further help set why this aggravated me past the pale, you have to also understand who was audacious enough to dismiss me as a disabled wretch, that being a somewhat obese individual, who in order to be able to work themselves, required a knee brace, compression gloves, and a constant flow of topical salves for their bad back. Yep… I should definitely take medical/life advice from them, and then when I’m done doing that, I’ll ask Donald Trump to give me the finer points of how to maintain an open and honest dialogue in regards to a life partner.

Getting back on track, it’s not like my doctor or I actually know anything that can’t be solved with aromatic oils and crystals, right?

To be fair, due to a condition known as diabetic neuropathy, a form of nerve damage, I do have some obvious issues that I can’t easily mask- my hands have a slight tremor, I have balance issues, and I also suffer from low blood pressure, which is surprising, given my renowned affinity for being a fire-spark. However, I still did my job, and if they were unhappy with me, they could have just fired me with some bullshit excuse, rather than attempting to rid themselves of my presence via attrition and later on, slander.

Factor in the complications that arise from an out of touch manager reacting with insensitivity to the necessities of testing & dosing my blood sugar as diabetics need to do, and it’s not too hard to understand why my health started going off the rails. Initial snarkiness aside, the arrogance this overly demanding craven exuded after they took command, poisoned the well of what was once a fairly tolerable work environment- while the job itself always sucked, the atmosphere of camaraderie balanced it out, and while the place never would have been mistaken for running like a Swiss watch, it definitely didn’t improve under their inconsistent management style they brought so ineptly to the table.

If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the kitchen, my late Oma used to say, and if you do flee, don’t whine like a bitch as you do it. As an illustration of such, it wasn’t uncommon to have to listen to a laundry list of complaints about their boss one day, and then walk into a love-fest the next. The best analogy I can give about how things were being dictated is for you to picture a decapitated chicken running around in circles with a clipboard, freaking out about trivialities, as they steadily composed a never to be sent email blasting their immediate superior.

Add in the unnecessary commentary about my health, and it isn’t too hard to see why I used to refer to my commute as “taking the road to where all my dreams have gone to die”. In contrast, my last boss never yelled, never lost their cool, and the only thing I can say that was a negative to their character is the fact that they really didn’t like peanut butter.

I know… I thought it was weird too.

The only respite I have in regards to the issue of my illegal discharge is the knowledge that I’ve filed complaints with OSHA, the EOEC, and the Industrial Commission [more on that below] in regards to a workman’s comp claim- measures which I hope will knock both my former supervisor, and the company they work for, down a few pegs. I guess we’ll see if there really are protections for people like myself, and whether it was worth rolling the dice or not.

On the upside, having all that downtime has allowed me to whittle down my “honey do” list, and catch up on some overdue reading and research, so there’s that. The second and more worrisome concern, is that while working said job from Hell, I injured my supraspinatus, which is one of the muscles around my rotator cuff. The length of time that it takes for the injury I suffered to heal is six to twelve months on the average, and having to do the physical therapy required to fix it just bites.

The people I’m working with are awesome, but from the POV of a guy who gave up working out over a decade ago, I’m fairly convinced that the Dark Lord Satan himself designed my exercise and rehabilitation program, and then recruited my therapists from the Sith Racquetball Club. If true, that just hurts, because I thought we were tight.

Seriously Lucifer… you were so much cooler before you went all mainstream.

C’est la vie, I guess. So as one can assume, I have been all shades of bitchy lately, and I’m not the type who enjoys pain in any form, given the fact I’m already dealing with a flare-up of my diabetic neuropathy on top of it all. To be brutally honest, saying I’m a bit vexed right now would be a colossal understatement. Nothing aggravates me more than having to be on the sidelines when I’m all fired up and raring to go, but thanks to this stupid injury and my previous health issues, I’ve been somewhat locked-down for months.

Speaking of being locked down, I also find myself in Facebook “jail” for the next month, because apparently white supremacists are allowed to say whatever they want, but God forbid, us actual humans respond negatively towards it. I’m starting to think their algorithms spend an inordinate amount of time listening to Skrewdriver and visiting Stormfront.com. One can only hope that when Schmuckerberg is in front of Congress, they have him for lunch, raw. And as if things weren’t truly bothersome enough already, I’m also dealing on and off with an utterly disturbed cyber-stalker of the MAGA variety, who has taken an interest in me not seen since Fatal Attraction was in theaters.

Minus the bunny boiling, this ludicrously inept Hot Pocket aficionado started with physical threats, moved onto spamming my Instagram page, tried to threaten my followers, created and then posted, pathetically transparent videos on YouTube claiming I’m a serial rapist and child predator, much to the amusement of all who’ve seen them, and capped off his asinine psychosis by redirecting my website traffic to a pharmaceutical website, which took GoDaddy all of 15 minutes to fix. If I did have to comment in regards to these truly impotent Trumplethinskins, they are willing to put in the hours to defend Cadet Bone Spurs, AKA: President Spanky, Odin love them.

As a salve towards keeping my sanity, I’ve been ultra-focused on the advocacy concern I’ve been crafting for quite some time, and despite the inevitable hurdles this sort of undertaking unavoidably comes upon, I’ve managed to make some heartening progress- it seems that a lot of people feel the way I do regarding the pathetic quagmire that passes for art advocacy in this city, and want to be involved somehow, whether it’s directly or peripherally.

Here’s the issue- the PAS may not be truly dead, but it’s doing a pretty good job of playing the part of an artsy corpse. Think “Weekend at Bernies”, except this time the cadaver is being dragged by Artlink through their mismanaged two-night-a-month craft fair, as they stridently bray about how good the job they’re not doing is going. In other words, a typical First Friday. The question has arisen via the normal lines (Email, direct contact) as to why I’m harping on the ol’ A-link if at their core, they’re essentially useless and/or irrelevant.

Why that is a valid query, it does overlook the elephant in the room- that being while Artlinks odious influence seems somewhat limited to a designated arena, their artistic circle-jerk in actuality extends far past that. The PAS as an entity is scattered like so many dandelion seeds, and I don’t see that situation rectifying itself anytime soon, no matter what certain players in this town believe. And if you don’t have a stable core, you can’t build on (or out) from that.

Speaking of which, I had the… let’s just call it luck, to run into a relatively fresh face on the scene some time ago, and while they project the stereotypical mélange of unicorn dust and elf glitter regarding the 602, I also found them to be, (if I were to formulate a sexist and rather boorish connotation grabbed off the politically incorrect shelf) somewhat “bitchy” at best.

Trust me, I hate myself for feeling like I need to compose the use of such raw verbiage, but that’s the first thing that comes to mind, and as usual, I’ll explain myself. One of the more excruciating things I force myself to do are the local “artist meet and greet” soirees put on around Phoenix, and If I were to take the position of being viciously honest, I’m much more interested in the free cheese cubes than I am about the events themselves, which typically, not only waste my time, but test my already limited tolerance for people of narrow intellect and/or use.

Why?

Well… it may be due to the fact that I loathe non-realistic, unicorn-riding, glitter throwing, rainbow painting, overly friendly, artsy leg-humping, huggingly clueless dipsticks. Don’t misread me, I’m all for people promoting the ol’ 602, but I draw the line at vapidity and haughtiness in how and when it’s done. This leads me to introduce my newest scratching post, an arrogant Art-Barbie who works for the well-organized, but increasingly ineffectual entity known as the Roosevelt Row CDC.

Don’t get me wrong, the last get-together I attended a long while back at Unexpected Gallery was surprisingly awesome, and if I were to make a bad joke, the whole vibe of the place was, well… unexpected. The art was top-notch, the lighting was great, and the sangria was free, which is always a plus. So what separated this get-together from the previous three I grudgingly attended? Two things: first, the person I’m about to verbally shred wasn’t at this particular meeting, having taken the time to go “experience” Burning Man, and second, the people I was fortunately among actually “got” what I tend to preach in regards to the PAS, that being the concept of securing financial stability within and marketing outside, the choir for a change.

More on that in a bit.

I’ve written at great length about how the development of downtown has eviscerated the PAS, aided by our so called art advocates, so I won’t rehash all of my previously noted complaints here yet again… you’re welcome. What I will say however as an addendum, is that Roosevelt in essence, could play a zombie in The Walking Dead, and shamble away with an Emmy for Best Performance by an Ineffectual Reanimated Slab of Meat. Now down to a few art-spaces of note (all of whom are still doing innovative shows), the Row’s goose has not only been cooked, it’s been diced, sliced, and compressed into snack cakes that are currently being sold in Japan under the moniker “Goosinkies” via a vending machine that occupies a space next to one that sells used panties.

[Seriously. The Japanese have some weird-ass fetishes. Google, if you dare.]

In other words, saying you represent the Row via the CDC these days has all the cachet of saying you’re besties with Vanilla Ice. It may have pulled in the babes once, but all it acquires now is scorn and jokes about your unmaintained fade. But here’s the thing- you were probably keyed in to what was hip once, so there’s still a chance you might be salvageable in the long run. It’s a marginal possibility, but it does exist, and you may even still have some fans left, even if that’s only due to pity or more likely, nostalgia.

And while some of those fans may defend you, it’s still obvious that you’re completely out of step with the truth of current events, which is the doorstep we find ourselves on regarding my newest chew-toy, whom I ironically met at a meet and greet for creatives interested in making a difference, via earth-shaking radical socialist kind of thoughts. The ones that get bearded guys named Che killed. But as usual, I’m getting slightly ahead of my self, so let me spin my tale from the beginning of things, where due to an unforeseen miscommunication, I was informed that this eventual waste of my time was targeted at the PAS. Instead, I found out it was a gathering of avid social justice warriors, and while I don’t have anything against the SJW brigade, I’m not really their particular recruitment demographic either- just saying.

While I’m by no means an isolationist, I tend to worry about my own first, long before I worry about political prisoners in El Salvador, if you get my drift. I pick the battles that I know I can fight, and more importantly, win. If you feel that makes me a bad person, you can leave your self-righteous opinion on top of the bad karma pile (next to the mail-room) as you leave my lair. So as I was pondering how to make an escape from this scene straight out of a 70’s liberal-arts college coming-of-age- movie, a round of (I’m paraphrasing) “Who are you, what do you do, and what are you passionate about?” sprung up.

Oh dear Odin… I am now officially in Helheim, and on top of it all, my Sleipnir is nowhere near within walking distance. As expected, most of the answers were relatively what you’d imagine from people committed to a cause outside of your own, not that there’s anything wrong with that, mind you- it’s just that my idea of social crusading tends to be more localized, versus global. What can I say, except that my belief in the old adage of “start small to build big” remains strong as ever. To reference a character-forming movie of my errant youth:

“You don’t want to get mixed up with a guy like me. I’m a loner, Dottie… a rebel.” [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKLizztikRk]

As I sat there, slowly tuning out as I wait for an opportunity to jump ship without anyone noticing, I heard the following: “Hi! My name is ***, I’m ** years old, and I’m with the Roosevelt Row CDC, but I don’t carry any of their baggage, so please don’t ask me about any of that… [Um… what?] I recently graduated from ASU with a Sociology Degree, and I don’t know *giggle* when I’m ever going to use it, and I really don’t know anything about the art scene, but I’m willing to learn.”

Continuing to glitter-babble, she goes on about how a church and maker space two blocks off Roosevelt is going to revitalize the currently rotting art-carcass that is the Row, and in an extra touch of Unicorn belching, adds to her inanity by implying that families and teenagers alone are going to keep our so-called art scene afloat. And as she says this, I inwardly hear the sounds of my inner cynic emitting a deep sigh as he pours himself a three-fingers shot of bourbon… thrice.

Traditionally, I’ve never been much of a drinker, but I’m giving serious pause and accreditation to the thought of taking up the habit, mainly because of helium-headed second-handers like this.

However, I do happen to be gregarious by nature, and since I like to think of myself as a fountain of useful information, I start to tell her why her take might be slightly flawed, given the fact that she just admitted publicly she has no idea what she’s talking about. As I’ve noted oft before, I really need to fire and replace my sense of optimism one of these days- due to the fact he’s been pretty much phoning it in the last few months, and after the gas station sushi incident back in February, I don’t really feel I can trust him with anything delicate anymore.

“Made fresh daily”, my ass.

As I’m laying out why her POV may be not entirely accurate as diplomatically as I can, she cuts me off, and rather snottily states that: “Um, let me finish… and then you can get all [and I quote] judgy.”

So let me get this straight if I may, a person who wasn’t even alive when I started doing art as a career, a person who just told a round-table of strangers that she knows nothing about the basic history or elements of the community she’s supposed to integrate with, a person who for some reason thinks that working for the CDC means not having to answer for any concerns regarding it, a person who despite her claim that she wants to “learn”, has just told someone with a 25 year background in the PAS that he should just shut up and not be critical about the scene he knows better than the liner notes of his ABBA albums..

To quote Shunryu Suzuki: ” If you cannot bow to Buddha, you cannot be a Buddha. It is arrogance.”

And keep in mind I’m the one saying this, so you can only guess at the beauty and depth of my intended insult. As I sit there, glaring in New Yorker, I decide that there’s no better time to leave than in the middle of her droning, as after all, I wouldn’t want Art-Barbie’s Kumbaya moment to be tainted by something so trivial as irrefutable reality. In an odd quirk of fate, sitting behind me at this event was a fellow artist who unlike me, is a tad bit more tuned in to the global social warrior network, and as such, constitutes the true demographic that this group was aiming to recruit.

As I rise, feeling that my time and intellect had not only been wasted, but insulted as well, said artist grabs me by the shoulder and informs that we should talk and that she needs to grab a beer, which is strange, since she already has a full one in her hand, a fact I call attention to. Her response?

“Yeah… I’m probably going to need another one soon.”

All jokes aside, this chica definitely knows who she’s about to break metaphorical bread with. The meeting as such, turned out to be both personally and financially lucrative, as it led to a delightful collaboration that wound up with the selling of some of my artwork. God, do I freaking love doing business. And therein lies the key difference for me: the facility to understand the distinction between being a hobbyist who plays, and a business-focused advocate who ACTUALLY works for progress, is what’s currently crippling our ability to become a serious player, and the question that arises is why is the obvious so damn hard?

 Observing with my insider overview, I can only assume it’s because the hobbyists within the PAS are enjoying their charade at presenting themselves as successful marketers or in a twist of unintended humor, an advocacy group, and with no due respect- there needs to be a culling, and that right quick. However, never let it be said that I am without a means of escaping this artistic Labyrinth we find ourselves in, as if there is one skill I possess in buckets, it’s knowing how to make a grand (and sometimes hasty) exit out of an unfamiliar room.

Let’s just say my penchant for speaking my mind has given me a lot of practice, and leave it at that.

But solutions are required, and I may have some, if I were to be so bold. Some are simple, some are obviously more complex, but the first steps into making Phoenix an artistic destination, not the pit stop on the way to somewhere else, have to start somewhere. So with that in mind, I present some concepts that hopefully, will lead to a financially stable future.

1) Working 9 to 5. It’s just not for the cubicle people.

One of the issues that most fail to consider when it comes to promoting the intangible is the amount of time it takes to advocate for it. I can only assume the complexity doubles when the prime offering is based more on a want, than a need. Granted, I wasn’t completely oblivious to the commitment that such an endeavor requires, but I never contemplated that it would be akin to a 60+ hour work-week just by itself. As one past president of Artlink informed me: “it becomes your life to the point of exhaustion, if not exclusion.”

And that gives me an idea- if the workload already equals that of a normal job, why don’t we make it an official position to begin with? Think about it: a salaried advocacy concern whose sole purpose would be to pimp the 602 full time, 5 days a week, the cost of such underwritten by either grants, or even more probable, a partnership with a community-based and art friendly, corporation. Now how is that I’ve come to a place where I feel that we should possibly collaborate with people who like the biblical locusts of old, have become a plague upon our scene? I’ll explain.

For a start, we don’t approach the gentrifying mother c**k-sucks who’ve treated the PAS in a manner more suited for a prison shower, as the past “deals” Artlink made with two of these parasites clearly illustrates. Much like haggis or an Adam Sandler movie, these vanilla wafers dressed up as humans are best avoided, and under no circumstances should you make direct eye contact with them.

Otherwise, they may subject you to their idea of architectural uniqueness, that typically manifesting itself as a metal-clad monstrosity lifted wholesale from Portland, and then rudely dropped into what was formerly a distinctive and vibrant space.

You know… standard Developer 101 protocol. I swear these beige-slugs are easier to read than the novel Dean Koontz just wrote on his way back from the bathroom. However, hope springs eternal- for every scene-eating carpet-bagging huckster, there exists it’s exact opposite, and that’s who we need to make friends with, mucho pronto. Exactly how we can do this I’m not sure, but I’d suggest we show up at their offices with cake. Lots of cake.

I tried cookies once as an opening gambit with someone who I hoped might help with the promotion of the PAS, and failed despite my best effort, so this suggestion comes from a painful lesson learned at the bedazzled feet of a narcissist who makes Kanye look humble, so pay heed. And no, I’m not referring to Amy Silverman… it’s just an amazing coincidence that the description still fits her so well*. A simple quirk. Chance. I swear. Pure happenstance. Fluke of the Universe, and so on. [*Allegedly.]

The validity of a fully funded and full-time entity making outreach to other cities, institutions, and more importantly, pre-established patron bases, cannot be underestimated, and try as I might, I can’t really see too many flaws with this idea if the funding issue can be resolved, and promoting during the workweek seems to me at least, a much more opportune time to put our wares out there than the down time of nights and week-ends. Considering that the current board comprised of fourteen members possesses only two actual Creatives while the rest are all Suits, you’d think that they’d have already figured this part out. A purely creative take on the old adage of make hay while the sun shines, and all that.

The needs and concerns of 602-based Artists within this new structure will come first, period. Snazzy T-shirts can always come later, unless there’s a groundswell to take group pics, in which case- we can always move it up on the timetable. After all, it’s not like we’re barbarians or anything.

Speaking of which, this leads to my next idea to answer the question of why these corporations would want to be involved with this new venture if it’s needs are the second prerogative to be met, and the answer brings me to my next pitch:

2) Rotation, Location, Motivation.

In order to foster this very necessary relationship, we give our new friends what they need, good PR and marketing grist, along with what they can use: public art & interior decoration. I’m thinking as part of the deal to underwrite us, we provide a stock of rotating art for their buildings and spaces- all of it for sale (or lease) depending on whatever aspect is required. They get a fresh new look every couple of months, we get a place to display work that outside of our shows, studio spaces, and closets would just collect dust and disappointment, and everybody walks away happy in theory.

This in turn, could be a fabulous teaching tool for up and comers to learn the skill-set of displaying and promoting one’s work, and the developers we’re allied with get to make use of this symbiotic relationship for marketing and the like, which in turn, draws more attention to the PAS on a scale that actually helps our endeavors, versus limiting them. If we take the approach of leasing artwork, then one could assume that this arrangement could keep a steady stream of income replenishing the coffers as well, in opposition to Artlink’s soft coercion approach, which demands money from the very demographic which can least afford it, that being the artists themselves.

If we’re going to have to “sell-out” to make a living, shouldn’t it be both for the right reasons and with the right people so we don’t have to compromise our principles even in the slightest? Once again, I’d say yes, but I’m one of those wacky people that wants to make a living doing what I would do for free.

3) The Outsiders: a great book, a so-so movie, and a brilliant marketing strategy.

One of the logical ideas that’s been kicked around the PAS for quite some time is the notion of cross-curated shows- that is, where Creatives from other cities come here, and we send a complement of our best in return. Think of it as an artsy version of Wife Swap, but with better financial results. If you can haul in big names much in the manner that Amy Young from Pravus Gallery manages to do seemingly effortlessly, you could (in theory) milk the PR cow like an octopus on speed.

New blood is always a good thing in my humble opinion, and if anything, it could add a revitalizing jolt to our flaccid and highly disorganized construct of an art scene. An interesting take on this idea comes from my fellow graffiti enthusiast Alicia Crumpton, who states: “I would love to see some cross cultural exhibitions where we take a theme and have artists from different cities create an interpretive and or representative of that theme. For examples, Delhi and Phoenix or Japanese Chicanos and Phx… In my wildest dreams, it would be a street art and graffiti festival…complete with cross cultural exchange and dialogue. Man, that would be so fun.”

But even if we had let’s say, emerging artists as our base for these shows, the same concept still applies- a fresh infusion of raw talent goes a long way towards promoting the ethereal, and it’s something we as a whole desperately need. Keep in mind that this said endorsement would go both ways- our Creatives would be exposed to potential new patrons and their relevant media, and I can’t see a downside to that, no matter what angle I observe it from. It’s time to reach beyond our borders, extend the welcome mat, and acquire some new dance partners.

And if our luck holds out, we won’t step on each others toes while doing the Rumba.

4) The Money Trail: You shouldn’t need a CPA to follow it, am I right?

One of the pertinent questions I’ve always wanted to ask Artlink is where and how they spend their money- granted, there’s the cost of printing posters nobody sees, t-shirts that nobody wears, and securing the use of a trolley that allegedly sometimes likes to visit the people that pay for it, but I digress. And when it comes to office supplies, we all know that s*** ain’t cheap. Seriously… have you looked at the price of legal pads lately? You almost need a co-signer to walk out the door with one, and don’t even get me started on the cost of truly good pens- we’ll be here all day.

What I’m asking is this- what is the return on our direct investment? I for one, don’t see that things have gotten better for the Creatives or the PAS thanks to Artlink, but then again, I’m a realist who believes that marketing artists under the cheesy-as-frak label of “articipants” might in fact, dilute the seriousness of what we as a community are hoping to accomplish. But what do I know? I’ve never taken cues from how George Lucas marketed Return of the Jedi via creepy Ewok toys, so maybe I’m the one out of line.

And as an aside, does anybody really believe that the Empire could be jacked-up by stone-age teddy bears? Sure, there’s a power vacuum left after the Emperors death to contend with, but you’d still have thousands of soldiers and hundreds of ships, just sitting there rudderless. The entire idea is just absurd, and if I ever have the opportunity to meet Lucas in an elevator, we’re gonna have a serious chat regarding this and the craptastic “special edition” he foisted upon us a few years back.

Getting back on track, I initially failed to find a public resource that listed details of Artlink’s financial responsibilities to my personal satisfaction, and truth be told, that was probably more to my inexperience in having to do what comes off as accounting from afar. Given how much they pat themselves on the back for doing what comes off as a marginal effort driven by ego rather than community, you’d think that getting to the nuts and bolts of their financial infrastructure would be a relatively easy task, but it is and isn’t.

Thank God / Allah / Buddha / Yahweh / Debbie Harry for my legion of devoted readers, who stepped up and filled the void of my ignorance. I owe all of you a blood debt. Or a cookie. Take your pick, I’m good either way. Some of these loyalists talked of past supposed misdeeds concerning the worrying mismanagement of assets, others whispered about a disgraced board member embezzling funds for almost a year after they accused the then sitting treasurer of doing the same- that person btw, was allegedly cleared 100% by the Arizona Arts Commission, where in an ironic twist, it was also discovered that Artlink owed him money, to the tune of about 88 bucks. An alleged debt that this person claims that Artlink has yet to repay, I somewhat cynically note. I wonder how many t-shirts it would take to balance out those books. A question for another time, I guess.

Speaking for myself, I’ve always been disdainfully suspicious of the “trust me / us” model when it comes to the dispersion of publicly donated funds- it’s always seemed an excellent cover for financial buggery, in my humble opinion. That’s not to say that Artlink is currently involved in any such moral morasses, but at the same time, it’s not an absolution of said activity, either- I simply just want to know how this ineffective juggernaut is fueled, that’s all.

But there is this, a statement from a “please keep my name out of this” source who was intimately involved with Artlink back in the day: “At the time there was not any improper use of funds so much as general financial mismanagement. One guy who collected the mail would never get around to depositing checks and they would be under the seat of his car for weeks and months and that sort of thing. My guess is those records are just not there…

Of course the whole experience left me with a really bad taste, so I refused to be drawn back in after I bailed out in **** and I really have no notion of what went on after I left. My guess would be, more of the same, unawareness of the management of the finances of the organization. Good luck.”

Now with all honesty, I don’t know if these allegations are true or not, nor will I comment too deeply regarding it, as I don’t have the data necessary to corroborate it to my satisfaction, but it is a refrain I’ve heard from multiple sources, just saying. As I said earlier: ” That’s not to say that Artlink is currently involved in any such moral morasses, but at the same time, it’s not an absolution of said activity, either.”

However, if I were to play devil’s advocate, I’d have a difficult time believing that this unbidden communication was an attempt to bring Artlink’s perceived image among the arts community into disrepute- because quite simply, there’s no reason for this person to manufacture falsehoods that I can discern, and Artlink seems to be producing it’s own self-inflicted wounds at a rate that even Wolverine on his best day couldn’t heal from.

Speaking frankly in regards to when past board members have talked to   me [albeit with the assurance of anonymity] the metaphorical ducks they line up tend to follow a common refrain- while there’s nothing overtly illegal going on, the organization has a propensity to play it kind of loose, despite being currently overseen by someone who has been characterized [diplomatically and not so much per se] as a control freak. Fortunately for my quest, two of my readers directed me to some pertinent info, where I could acquire the information I was seeking, via the following link: https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/860638390

So what do the records reveal? Well….

If I were a person who was somewhat cynical to begin with, I might opine that the records seem a bit “shaky”. To bolster my opinion, lets take a gander at the records from 2015 (the most recent I could find so far- I’m still looking for the newest) to highlight some concerns I have regarding their distribution of the assets donated to them. In that year, they listed their total revenue as $59,092.00, with net expenses of $66,799.00, leading to a net loss of $7707.00- if I ran an organization into the red like that, I’m pretty sure I’d be out of a job, but that’s not how this particular breed of non-profits work, I guess.

Apparently, you can still get the participation trophy for pretending to be an arts advocate group, no matter how bad your actual performance is. So where did all that money go, you ask? Well, here’s the simplistic breakdown before I start my dissection:

1) $34k went to professional fees and independent contractors.

2) $13,419.00 for their office rent.

3) $8986.00 went to printing, publication, posting and shipping.
4) $10,394.00 to other expenses.

At first glance, none of this raises any metaphorical eyebrows, but I rarely ever take things at face value, as I’m an old-school cynic. And as such, I tend to look for cracks within the plaster- it’s kind of my niche. So before I start burrowing in, I have to address a related concern- for those of you who may not be aware, Artlink is also in charge of a three-day art event known as Art Detour- it’s traditionally held right before the weather in Phoenix switches from “Hey, this is kind of nice.” to “For the love of Odin, get out the oven mitts so we can open the car door!” On the surface, it ‘s presented as a vibrant art-walk, where all of the art galleries, art-spaces, and artists studios in Downtown Phoenix are open to the great and traditionally unaware, public.

Now, I’ve previously written at length about Artlinks puzzlingly consistent ineptitude in regards to Art Detour, and while I don’t think a rehash of those issues is truly warranted, I find myself having to sadly admit they remain as a tangible sticking point, due mostly to my email lighting up like a Christmas tree with complaints about this years event, which could be arguably and charitably described by those involved as a cluster-fuck of biblical proportions.

This year’s “throw mud at the wall and see if it brings cash” concept was to carve up the wide swath of Phoenix’s creative centers into “Art Districts”, and promote them as if they were singular islands adrift on an endless artsy sea. Naturally, this went awry. Not because of a lack of effort on the part of the Creative community, but because Artlink has the foresight of Mr. Magoo in a coal mine. Shockingly, promoting one area over another led to the perception among the masses that said region was the only one open for business- what an absolutely fucking brilliant idea.

In preparation for next years’ collective dung-heap of idiocy and ego, I offer this subtle suggestion for the Artlink board entire- maybe, just maybe… YOU SHOULD ASK THE CREATIVE COMMUNITY WHAT THEY F’KNG WANT AND MORE IMPORTANTLY, REQUIRE FIRST, BEFORE YOU ATTEMPT TO COORDINATE ANYTHING, YOU G*D-DAMN TWITS, AND AFTER THEY TELL YOU, LET SOMEONE ELSE TAKE THE REINS.

You know… maybe someone with no actual experience? Because I seriously doubt that they’d fk it up half as bad as you guys did this last go-around. Once again, if there was a measure of success, it most likely will be laid at the feet of the Creative community, not it’s bungling step-sister who for some as yet unknown reason, is still allowed to play by herself with sharp objects. Sigh… just when I think I can write about something else, it’s like Artlink views my wandering literary eye with all the disdain of a spurned ex, tosses it’s absinthe into the weeds around their IKEA Villa, and decides to bring it’s well-honed “D” game.

But if there is an upside to this, their most recent episode of inelegance, it’s that Artlink actually managed to bring an entirely new cock-up to the table, and I for one, can honestly say it caught me by surprise. You have no idea how refreshing it is to hear an unforeseen fresh-out-of-the-box complaint in regards to Artlink from the Creative community- it’s akin to Santa himself dropping off a crate of Ding Dongs at the Lair of Snarkitude, just so I could celebrate Halloween early.

Look at it this way- every year, I get to hear allegations about pre-paid trolleys that don’t arrive, promotional materials dropped off late or not at all, and art-spaces that get preferential treatment due to either a board member having a show or possessing an undisclosed vested interest, so forgive me if I was starting to feel a tad bit sleepy every time they were mentioned. Granted, I don’t mean to diminish by any means that the overall impact of their ineptitude wasn’t a negative, but even I didn’t think they had any fresh screw-ups left in them, so being thrown for a loop is a prize I didn’t expect to take home. And even better? It comes with street tacos, which are just like regular tacos, but cost three times as much.

Progress. Yummy yummy progress. Speaking of which, I think now would be a great place to take a break, grab some food, and rest up for the next installment, of which I am hoping will be the last time I ever have to put pen to pixels regarding this increasingly irrelevant pretend patron of the Arts in Phoenix. What can I say? Sometimes despite my better judgment, I have the optimism of a child at Christmas. Granted, I’m not asking for a pony, but if I could at least get the entire set of Micronauts, I’d be totally cool.

And when we come back, I talk book-keeping, start retooling my website, add a new layer to Artbitch, and talk about making friends with Trumpanzees via the magic of postcards.

“Art has been hijacked by non-artists. It’s been taken over by bookkeeping. The whole thing is so corrupt. But I suppose that’s okay. For artists, everything is grist for the mill. Artists are like cockroaches; we can’t be stamped out.” – Elaine de Kooning


Gentrification prefers Blands Pt.4 (Dancing with the Czars)

“It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.” – Aung San Suu Kyi, Freedom from Fear

Hello Blogiteers!

It has been heavy lately, has it not? I dropped the past blog to mixed and somewhat apathetic reviews, dealt with some annoyingly ongoing health issues, and had somebody I formerly respected stab me in the back to the point that I could do a fairly notable impression as a *Cenobite porcupine. *[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellraiser]

But what are you going to do? My limited faith in Humanity as always remains standing, but my reverence for certain people… not so much. To be quite honest, I’ve never understood why some

of my fellow humans cave in so easily when faced with an ethical decision that doesn’t affect them directly, peripherally, or at all. It seems cowardice is the new bravery these days, much to my chagrin, and this brings me back in a roundabout way to the incessant thing sticking in my craw as of late, that being our so-called arts advocacy group known as Artlink.

Now, I’m not going to bore you with a rehash of my opinion in regards to how Artlink’s president Catrina Kahler has allegedly tossed the art community under the bus by metaphorically shacking up with the very people who are helping destroy it, but I will say one opinionated thing nonetheless- it’s time for either a palace revolt or a metaphorical firestorm that purifies. For sake of clarity, I have no issues with Catrina as a person- she seems nice, is easy on the eyes, and comes off as the type of woman I could probably really exasperate in a checkout line if I started randomly chatting her up.

In that regard, I’m pretty sure she’s not alone, and if I were to be brutally honest, she’s possibly overstocked with sympathetic allies in that department.

Regardless, I will point out the fact that Artlink is neither the hero we remember from the good ol’ days, or the one we currently require. The situation we find ourselves in demands consistent and more urgently, a truly effective game plan to present this city to the world, something I feel Artlink lacks. And for those of you that need proof of concept for this assertion, look no further than their “artist mixer” that attracted a zero sum of artists, despite there being ready access to cheese cubes gratis, alcohol, and free T-shirts. And lets face it- if you can’t attract Artists with complimentary food, cheap booze, and free black T-shirts, I’m forced to question both your popularity among the creatives, and your perception of reality…

Vehemently.

Along those lines, one ex-board member/artist recently confided in me that during their term under Catrina’s leadership, they felt more like a curiosity than an active participant. To quote: “I felt like a monkey in a cage.” This thought will be touched upon later in this screed, but this, in my humble opinion speaks volumes in regards to the disconnect between Artlink and the artistic community it claims to serve.

However, for me to say that Artlink has done nothing since it’s inception would not only be exceedingly untrue, it would also be outstandingly arrogant. Artlink’s list of accomplishments is long and wide, and to not give open credit where it’s truly due, would be an affront of gargantuan scope- even I will happily laud their (and this is key) past accomplishments. Nonetheless, that was yesterday, what are they doing today?

Well, gleefully getting in bed with the carpetbaggers dismantling the PAS, if one’s been paying attention, but I digress. Other than that almost inconsequential tidbit which quite honestly, I’m embarrassed to have to point out, Artlink is running like a fine tuned Yugo. Sure, I could note the fact that I didn’t see any advertising for this years’ Art Detour, past a few posters on Grand where all the galleries are, because who outside of that corridor needs to be made aware that a free art festival is taking place?

Nobody, that’s who. And let’s not forget the absence of local media involvement- since publicity for our two-night-a-month art scene seemingly ranks right up there with Artlink organizing their T-shirt drawer, one couldn’t possibly deem that Art Detour should fare any better- after all, isn’t it the height of true professionalism to post a volunteer call a week before an event you had months to plan?

Nah.. it would be impolite of me to make certain so-called advocates blush under the weight of their alleged mismanagement, downright boorish, if truth be told. And if there’s one thing I’m known far and wide for, it’s a sense of supreme diplomacy even when facing opposition from faux advocates who outwardly lack not only common sense in regards to promoting our efforts, but allegedly, a sense of ethics as well.

The definition of advocate by the way, is as follows: “One who supports or promotes the interests of a cause or group.” Given those parameters, could somebody please explain to me or anyone for that matter, how Artlink’s two last “deals” for Creatives in this city come anywhere close to the concept of true advocacy? This concern is followed by another query split in twain: does it seem like Artlink is truly doing the job it claps itself on the back for, and where is it spending the money it raises from it’s soft coercion? I’d say no and I’m not sure, but then again, I’m a cynic who believes in tangible  reality, not hype.

Unless it comes to how awesome Ding Dongs are, and even then, I’m kind of judgmental.

Despite my disparagement, this year’s Detour came off as pretty solid, but the success of such cannot be laid at the feet of Artlink, if word on the street is any indicator. In gathering the opinion of some of the gallery owners on Grand, my takeaway was that Artlink’s influence upon the scene is akin to that of a deadbeat father- they’re there for the BBQ’s and the make-up sex, but flee when the metaphorical diaper needs to be changed. Artlink hasn’t created a base for a financially stable art scene, far from it. Any positive change in regards to sales should be given to the galleries whose sheer force of will and endless networking have created the base from which they draw fiscal solidity.

Sadly, [depending on your POV], the biggest draw for Detour this year was a billboard depicting America’s Twittering Oompa-Loompa, President Donald Trump, front and center of an apocalyptic landscape, bordered by atomic clouds and squared-off dollar signs that call up remembrances of Nazi swastikas. Commissioned by local business owner Beatrice Moore, who has stated that it will remain on display for as long as he serves as president, the unbecoming [yet highly accurate] representation has gone viral, drawing both praise and controversy for the nature of it’s message.

Isn’t it ironic that the ones calling those of liberal bent “snowflakes”, psychologically melt the moment someone dares mock their Tangerine Jesus using either humor or more typically, actual facts? Karen Fiorito, the California-based artist who is responsible for the work, has received numerous threats of rape, death and harm to her children since the works installation, because that’s how the alt-right handles mature dissension in this, the modern era: threatening violence in their underwear, all while hiding under the internets bed.

Along those lines, a “protest rally” was organized which garnered the support of nine “Bikers for Trump”, none of whom actually showed up. Ooh, that’s fierce. You’d think a state that went for the Mango Mussolini could do way better in the cretin department than these delusional twits, but I digress. Best part? Their posting a meet-up space that’s was bulldozed years ago just because they liked the name, which was “Patriot’s Park”. A side note: you’d think people who spend the majority of their free time web-whining would be equally adept at using Google, but as I’ve often noted before, these Trumplethinskins are as allergic to facts as Superman is to Kryptonite.

According to Fiorito, the work symbolizes: “global destruction, warfare and annihilation of the planet, representing corporate power and greed and how our society has become all about money and corporatism.” The backside of the billboard however, has a very different message- it shows 5 hands representing multi-ethnicity spelling out the word “Unity” in sign language. Fiorito’s artistic decision for this aesthetic choice was due to her sense that:  “I wanted to have a positive or a flip side to the billboard,” she says, “I wanted something to be a call to unity and a call for people to come together to resist what’s happening … if we become united, we can defeat anything.”

Now, while I support both the message and the staging of this provocative work, it does raise an almost curmudgeonly grumble; the people who came down here for the sole purpose of shooting selfies with it should have been here for the main event, not the sideshow. While I and I’m sure many other in the scene are grateful for the crowds [and worldwide publicity] it generated, the discovery of our collective efforts afterwards as if almost by accident is a smear that is borne solely on the shoulders of Artlink, and no one else.

Seriously… why isn’t the majority of the scene sick and tired of this half-ass, craft-fair marketing, bulls**t yet? Why can’t we as a whole find the utmost balance between commerce and creativity?

Speaking of which, can anyone at Artlink explain why (and how) they let the opportunities of the Final Four slip by? In a week that played host to one of sport’s biggest events, coupled with the Pride Parade and the free of charge Mc Dowell Music Festival, how hard would it have been to pitch a tent near any one of these events, distribute some flyers, and hand out a couple of those T-shirts Artlink is so proud of? Call me crazy, but wouldn’t diverting some of that FREE national publicity towards our local art scene have been a good idea as a means to expand our reach?

And when it comes to the concept of allegorical expansion, where is (and what is) Artlink’s long-term game plan to benefit the PAS? I see a lot of lame-ass self-congratulatory parties taking place, but I don’t see any useful forward movement, and that’s not what advocacy is supposed to be about, but I digress. Artlink’s willing pairing with Baron Development, one of the countless influences that is sublimating our community into ethereal remembrance, serves in my opinion as a shining testament to how insipidly dense the organization has become.

I noted this alliance in a previous blog, wherein Baron Properties and Artlink announced a voucher program that would have allowed residents to purchase art pieces and receive a discount on their rent in return. The original reimbursements started at $250.00, but based on availability, could have gone higher. Incoming residents who used the art vouchers were directed to an online list of participating artists, galleries and art spaces, which included Roosevelt Row spaces such as Eye Lounge and the Phoenix Center for the Arts, and tenants had 60 days from their move in to redeem said voucher with a receipt of their purchases.

All of this announced via an ever so fluffy press release, which heralded a unique and innovative approach to the promotion of our local art scene in conjunction with our ostensible advocacy group.

Except…..  according to one of Illuminate’s leasing consultants [a lovely girl by the name of Lauren McCauley] the program was implemented “for only four or five months, I don’t remember- it was gone by the time I was hired”. Now I don’t know about you, but that remarkably short time frame hardly seems like it could have had a calculable financial impact, but that’s just my humble opinion- maybe I missed the part where my fellow artists were rolling in their pimped-out Cadillac’s, making the gentrified cash rain.

But that’s what I love about the current incarnation of our resident faux-arts advocacy group- it never fails to hastily craft a feeble attempt at relevancy whenever it’s previous one has crashed and burned like Paul Walker inside a 2005 Carrera GT. I’m sorry. That was heartless. By comparison, I’m fairly confident the majority of artists in this town wouldn’t condescend to p*** on Artlink if it were on fire, and the body of work he created is theoretically something that has a much better chance of standing the test of time, given Artlink’s meandering in regards to a comprehensive end-game.

But Odin love them, they keep plugging away* like a drunken toddler in the dark, and one can’t help but admire that kind of gritty determination, no matter what side of my opinion you choose to land on. *[Link: https://artlinkphoenix.com/artlink-announces-call-for-artist-forward-grant-applications/]

From the press release:

“Artlink Inc. is now accepting applications from Arizona-based artists for its inaugural grant program: The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF). The deadline for applications is midnight May 31, 2017 Mountain Standard Time (MST).

The program, originally announced at the 2017 Art d’Core Gala during Art Detour 29, is produced by Artlink in collaboration with a group of prominent professional artists who are serving on the newly formed Artlink Artist Council (AAC): Julie Anand, Joan Baron, Christine Cassano, Bill Dambrova, Peter Deise, Jeff Falk, Isaac Fortoul, Gabriel Fortoul, Frank Gonzales, Annie Lopez, William LeGoullon, Ann Morton, Joe Ray, Patricia Sannit, Randy Slack, Marilyn Szabo.

These established professional artists have worked 10 years or more in exhibiting and/or producing exhibitions that shine a spotlight on Phoenix; represent the diverse cultural identity of our city; and have contributed significant time/energy to either Art Detour/Artlink and/or partner initiatives that strive to elevate the profile of Phoenix’s creative community.Submitted grant applications will be reviewed by the AAC along with members of Artlink’s Board of Directors. The selected grant recipient will receive a $500 grant and/or the opportunity for an exhibition facilitated by Artlink. Additionally, members of the AAC will provide mentorship to selected artist(s).

The artist recipient will be someone who demonstrates potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways. It will be someone who is at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be most impactful.

“We’re excited about helping artists in such a direct way,” said Catrina Kahler, Artlink Board President. “This is not only financial support, but mentorship from professional artists who have been living and working in the area for years. They are excited to share what they have learned and we are looking forward to seeing the results of this innovative collaboration.””

Gotta give Catrina credit… she does know how to present a puff-job like nobody else, and as always, it just gets my claws a-tingling. Seriously. I’m so happily vibrating over here you could use me as a tuning fork, and I’m completely tone deaf. Not in the range of Nickelback, mind you, but pretty darn close. So why should I have a problem with this, when on paper, it looks like such a positive? Even I, the great and unholy cynic couldn’t possibly see any problems with this, now could I? 

Sigh… it’s as if you don’t know me at all.

To move things along, let’s get the inevitable nitpicking out of the way first. As stated above, this newest in a long line of sugared placebos was acknowledged a while back at the pretentiously monikered Art d’Core Gala, which used to be known as the Artists’ Ball until somebody thought that renaming it after something Phoenix doesn’t actually have- that being a viable core to it’s art scene, was the best way to give it legitimacy among the art cognoscenti.

We can’t create a stable financial base to support what we do, but we sure can party down with the mayor, and that’s what counts as a win these days, it seems. At this point, Artlinks’ ability to pat it’s own back for the most mediocre of it’s efforts, has almost certainly given at least one of it’s symbolic arms the length needed to give a reach-around from space. I for one, would rather work with the mayor, versus go dancing with him- that’s not meant as a slam against Greg, I’ve voted for him twice, and the last I checked, that had nothing to do with how well he does the Charleston, but I digress.

Getting back to my carping, the discrepancy between the party announcement [March 16th] and posting it on their website [May 1st] just shows the casualness that Artlink exudes in it’s response to what it’s mission allegedly is. As a fellow Creative noted on one of my FaceBook pages:

“In regard to Art d’Core Gala and those kind of art affairs… Those who attend and participate are those who support the development (“love the expansion of ASU (my alma mater- my mommie) finally downtown is becoming a ‘real’ city (now that the basement dwellers and deplorables have been driven out) and the players involved (the social movers and shakers) like members of the CDC..(our own personal police informants) and people with questionable ethics like politicians, lawyers and the rich… along with desperate wannabes there to rub shoulders with those who they hope will pay for their lack of actual talent, in exchange for legitimacy, and there you have it.

Problem is.. I don’t know what any of that has to do with Art. After all Art is who you are, not what you create.. what you create is a expression of who you are. If what you create is a lack of personal integrity, that is not art.”

My point is this: not everyone within the PAS went to or agrees with, this back-patting charade, and not everyone in the PAS is up to date in regards to what’s up with the limited opportunities available, so getting this information online ASAP should have been a priority. Factor in that the deadline comes just 30 days after it was, and hopefully one can see why once again, half-ass is Artlinks go-to cruising speed. I know it’s a bitchy grey area, but if you gloss over the cogs that comprise the machine, what are you like when it comes to the ongoing maintenance of it?

Personally, I think the retired without fanfare and utterly riotous failure that was the Baron “deal” serves as a stark case in point, but I tend to deal with the absolute, not the theoretical. As to the artists involved with this program, I’m not going to have too much in the way of snark to fling, due to either respect for who they are and what they represent, or because I have an inter-personal relation ship with them. Not too much, but some. It is me after all. To somewhat smooth over any hackles that may get raised in regards to this grouping, I’d go one step further and state with full conviction that any flaws to be blamed within this proposal most likely will rest at the feet of the suits, not the smocks, as I can’t really see anybody in this pool of talent being that short-sighted.

While I appreciate what this gifted group is trying to achieve, it would be foolish to overlook the level of distrust that Artlink has among my fellow Creatives, and that’s something I’m neither going to forgive or forget, given the past. to further expand upon the earlier words of a former artist who served on the board: “I felt like a monkey in a cage most of the time… like I was trotted out when they needed to prove they knew artists, and when I resigned, the regular dinner invitations stopped completely. [In quite the sarcastic tone…] I’m sure those two aren’t related, right?”

This insight concerning Artlinks inner machinations not only once again underscores the alleged need to appear artist friendly, it also opens a discussion on the suggested proclivity of a specific person using people they’ve deemed influential as steps on the way up to a higher plane of shoulder-rubbing, AKA “coat-tailing” within the PAS. Whether this is true or not, I simply do not know, but the stories circulating around the scene have tended to echo each other nonetheless, and since Catrina has basically dodged all attempts to have a clearly defined discussion in regards to issues I’ve raised, [as described earlier in this series] I really can’t make a purely clean judgment call as a rule.

So take it as it lays. It wouldn’t be out of character within the PAS, and I’m pretty much done with extending the welcome mat, if truth be told, given the fact she’s questioned both my honesty and motives overall. My adulterous ex-fiancé has better odds at getting back on my good side, and that’s only because she’d do that thing I really like… cooking. If the stories about Catrina are accurate, she’d cater the dinner, and then brag about how many hours she spent peeling the shrimp.

If you know her, I’m sure you know for certain. If you know what I mean. Allegedly, of course.

Getting back to the board, [hereafter referred to it’s proper name, the AAC] the talent is honestly, stunning. I’m a huge fan of most of the assembled artists, save for one person who had a wackadoo moment and threatened me over the phone several years ago, but that’s water under the bridge, as the common saying goes, and I feel no need to reopen that particular box of idiocy, no matter how tempting or overdue it might be.

I’ll just take great satisfaction knowing they’ll die alone and eaten by the feral cats they’ve adopted, and leave it at that. My current adulting level: June Cleaver. See? I can grow as a person. It’s just not as interesting.

However, I still think this alliance will either fail or fadeout within a year, not because of the given personalities involved, but due mostly to Catrina’s already noted dearth of leadership and the unforeseen challenges ahead. Now that my minor finickiness is abated, lets get to my favorite part of why I write- the moment when I start dissecting a metaphorical cow with a literary chainsaw, and turn the surroundings into an organic Pollack painting.

First, let’s start with the “prizes” Artlink is offering: a $500.00 grant, the guarantee of a long-term mentorship “from professional artists who have been living and working in the area for years, and/or the opportunity for an exhibition facilitated by Artlink.”

Now, if these were under the guidance of a consistently proficient advocacy group, I’d probably be a tad bit less skeptical of it’s overall effect in regards to the career of whatever artist receives it. In order to explain my cynicism as to these offerings, I’m going to approach them individually, so as to keep the distinctive issues between them clear.

1) Five hundred bucks ain’t worth what it used to be, now is it?

When I was born way back in January of 1969, 500 dollars was *equivalent to the buying power of 3,400.45 today. (2017) In 1991, when I started my art career in Phoenix, that amount had dropped to $902.21. [*http://www.dollartimes.com/inflation/inflation.php?amount=500&year=1969]

These days? It’s un-amazingly, just 500 bucks, and in the grand sense of things, that isn’t squat, especially where being a Creative is concerned. While free money is always nice, there’s a certain limit as to where it actually makes a quantifiable difference in one’s life, and it isn’t around the five Benjis mark, that’s for sure. Most artists live on a shoestring- the odds are pretty good that money won’t go to artistic endeavors, so much as basic necessities, and I’m pretty comfortable in my mindset concerning this.

This isn’t “financial support”, this is misdirection parsed out for the sake of appearance only. When in the past has Artlink ever seemed to care about financially supporting artists? If they did, they definitely would have made a much better deal than the one they cut with RED Development as noted in an earlier piece I wrote, and they sure as frak wouldn’t have let their train-wreck covenant with Baron be quietly phased out, either, now would they? Just sayin’. I find that it strikes strange that there’s so many business people on the board, and yet none of them seemingly know how to successfully market such an attractive commodity.

From the call: “Artlink is supported by City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, Downtown Phoenix Inc., Arizona Commission on the Arts, Phoenix Art Museum, The Arizona Republic, Dunn Transportation, Roosevelt Row CDC, Warehouse District, Central Arts District and Historic Grand Avenue”, and yet despite all that shared involvement, still requires a submission fee to: “support the administration of all Artlink efforts in supporting local artists. This includes a variety of year-round opportunities to promote, exhibit and sell your work.” but rest assured, “as we grow, we will continue to look for more opportunities.”

How encouraging. Even when they have what could be considered a good idea, they still can’t do it right, and therein lies a fundamental problem. If this group was in charge of selling toilet paper to the populace, we’d all still be using leaves, and if their product was Big Macs, everyone in this city would look like 1986 Elle Mc Pherson.  

After having spoken to two of the artists that sit on the AAC, it seems that the flaws inherent within this grant idea cannot be laid at the feet of the creative facet, but at the short-sighted and so-called leadership of Artlink, per typical motus operandi. Several ideas were allegedly cooked up by the smocks that know far better than the suits what is ACTUALLY needed in the way of assistance to the artistic community, but according to my sources, those were either ignored or jettisoned by the ones who know the very least of which they speak.

Or as I call it, a typical Wednesday for Catrina and her cabal of second-handers.

If you remember, I wrote about Artlink’s annual juried exhibition/clusterf**k a while back, wherein they somehow managed to get Baron Development to pony up 10k in prizes, for art that was overall, top quality, but hardly groundbreaking or risk-taking. I’m not going to regurgitate the intricacies, but the show was weak in it’s presentation, and it’s choice of venue [The Heard] was out of place for an advocacy group that claims to fully support the PAS. However, I am truly happy that somebody who strikes me as relatively non-material took home the Grand Prize of 5k, and that leads me to a rather pointed series of questions:

Instead of throwing yet another self-congratulatory circle jerk, why didn’t Artlink use that money to it’s supreme potential? Can you imagine the ripple effect of ten 1k grants? Or five 2k ones? Maybe an outreach of 2 5k’s, or even better, one 10k grant- that right there, would make a difference worth noting. I for one, could squeeze juice out of ten grand better than *Xenia Onatopp practicing her technique on a Canadian Admiral, and I’m completely addicted to buying books, which can get rather costly after a while.
*[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xenia_Onatopp]

Seriously. Am I only one who’s thought of this? If so, then we’re all in really deep trouble, because if I’m the smartest snark in the room, then you need to do two things right now: cash in your assets, and party like it’s 1999, because the end times are nigh, and the Horsemen are-a coming to play all the hits. If Artlink wants to pretend to help artists using the obvious smoke-and-mirrors distraction of self-serving and inadequate endowments, then it definitely needs to get it’s act together and cough up some effective underwriting to do it.

But then again, I also believe in extraterrestrials, so its difficult to see which will show up in this scene first… my odds are on the visitors with the unnerving *cookbook.
*[ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dk01eeKMD_I ]

My simple suggestion to Artlink: next time you feel the need to waste precious capital on yet another dance party, put that money back into the hands of the demographic you pretend to advocate for, and just have a BBQ at Catrinas house- you know…  the one you only get invited to if you have use as a stair-step or socially relevant prop?

This of course, now naturally leads to the second issue at hand- the so-called ‘mentorship” being offered in lieu of any truly effectual and constructive funding.

2) Mentorship, like producing a watchable DC superhero movie, is harder than it sounds.

The concept of Mentorship is regarded as the guidance provided by an experienced person in either a specific trade or within an institution, be it a business or educational concern, and in relation to where the arts are concerned. it is also an exceedingly crucial component, and I state this based on my own personal experience. One needs to choose their mentors by way of the same vigilance that mentors use to select their apprentices- that with a sense of focused caution. For the relationship to work, there must be a profound level of trust and respect on both sides, and it cannot waver.

The other two necessities are time and patience, something most Creatives are not really known for having in abundance, but that are imperative for any association to be truly successful, and that’s where I see the hairline cracks forming in this initiatives armor. To be a fairly effective mentor, one needs to carve out and dedicate a significant chunk of one’s life to the cause. As much as I hold sincere respect for the artists involved, (save for the one who’ll be eaten by cats, of course) I happen to harbor severe reservations as to if they’re truly aware how much time this aspect will consume in regards to their lives.

Once again, I’m NOT bagging on the artists in regards to their dedication or passion for this project, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that given the fact most artists typically work a day gig on top of their “real job”, finding time to be a life-coach for an inexperienced minion running underfoot is gonna be a real bitch, no matter how much energy you approach it with. This leads to another query I have: if  the role of mentorship rests on the shoulders of the group entire, how will they share custody of their artsy Padawan? I can see it now:

“You get them Monday, I get them Tuesday, the rest of you can have them on Wednesday and every other Friday, and we all draw straws on who gets to take them out for Dick Blicks and Pinkberry on the weekend.”

Yep. There’s no possible way that this plan could have any massive hiccups. Like most of Artlink’s other endeavors as of late, I’m sure this one will run smoother than Teflon on glass. After all, just because their past track record of merging inefficient marketing while throwing artists under the bus, proves otherwise, that’s no reason to be a negative Nancy now does it? Of course not. Even a monkey with a broken typewriter will eventually draft an Academy Award screenplay given enough time, so this feeling of unbridled optimism that come this same time next year, we’ll all be watching Exit Through the Gift Shop Pt.2, is *clearly in order. *[Sarcasm highly intended.]

Or more likely, we’ll be standing outside where the gift shop used to stand, staring through the cracked windows of yet another failed venture. If the Road to Hell is paved with good intentions, I’d opine that Artlink has pretty much built a 12-lane super highway by now, and that all the traffic on it is being routed through one lane, while they decide where to place the electronic billboard heralding their lack of accomplishment.

3) Did anyone else notice there’s more vagaries in this Artists’ Call than a French New Wave film?

I won’t speak for anyone save myself, but I’m a person who really likes specifics. Specific specifics, specifically. I despise platitudes, saccharine treacle masquerading as Peter Pan advice, and I, if truth be told, loathe the phrase “trust me”, with the heat of a thousand suns- especially when there’s no base to stand secure on. Why do I feel the need to state this?

Well, due to the wording and consistent lack of details that Artlink seems so fond of using in it’s supposed artist calls, I find it’s vague promises of things that may be to come a tad bit vexing. In the case of the prior deal with RED Development, it was the cheerfully indistinct “details to follow” in relation to the compensation for the artists work being reproduced as limited edition prints, and in this newest instance, it’s the phrase “and/or”.

From the call yet again: “The selected grant recipient will receive a $500 grant and/or the opportunity for an exhibition facilitated by Artlink. Additionally, members of the AAC will provide mentorship to selected artist(s). The artist recipient will be someone who demonstrates potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways. It will be someone who is at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be most impactful.”

“Artlink will schedule the exhibition based on discussions and calendars of both the artist and the venue providing the space.” This is puzzlingly followed by the reiteration in the FAQ section of a previously established point, that being: The criteria is up to the Artlink Artist Council in determining which artist “demonstrates potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways.”

Two things: is there any reason why an exhibition is listed if there’s a probable chance it won’t actually be granted, and what purpose does a replication of the judging criteria announcement serve? Is it to help clarify Artlinks stance, or to serve as a bulwark against future criticism of their not providing any actual details in the first place?

Seriously… what defines “risk-taking“, and what entails the “dynamic” pushing of one’s work? Who will set that standard within the assembled group of Creatives, and how will the differences of opinion be eventually settled? It’s almost as if Catrina and her rubber-stamping scheme monkeys attended a Tupperware party and while they forgot to take notes, they still want credit for skimming the less pertinent points of the brochure nonetheless.

I’d also highlight that there will never be a time in any artists career where they wouldn’t view free money or a sponsored show as impactful, but I digress, since it’s such an obvious point that it shouldn’t have to be made in the first place. As for the theoretical exhibition, will it be all new work, or a retrospective of career thus far? Will it be a large or intimate show? What venues will be considered- established galleries, or the bottom tier of alternative spaces, such as coffee shops?

When one factors in the ongoing scarcity of places to successfully show ones work at, [IE: make actual sales] where is there an Artlink friendly gallery that fits all the ass-kissing requirements that Artlink demands, and has the level of professional presentation that this scene so severely lacks?

Who knows- maybe they’ll just book the Heard again, and unlike before, just go completely full-ass with the incompetence throttle this time. See? I can give credit where credit is due, despite all evidence to the contrary. So what is there to do in regards to this, you ask? To be brutally honest, it would be hypocritical of me as an artist to demand that my fellow artists pass up free money that could in theory, support creative endeavors, albeit on an obviously minor level- despite what some of my critics think, I’m a big believer in grabbing opportunities if they present themselves.

Having said that, I’m also a colossal proponent for not making deals with the Devil for inconsequential gains- Artlinks advocacy on the behalf of the PAS is at best, akin to Marie Antoinette telling peasants to go suck cake. What is currently being offered are metaphorical crumbs that have fallen off the table, and we’re supposed to not only be grateful for this arrogant condescension, we’re also expected to fund it as well, something I find to be particularly infuriating.

I’ve previously mentioned the fact that despite being underwritten by a host of entities, Artlink still inflicts a form of soft coercion on the art community in the form of membership fees. If you’re not a member, you, your work, and your gallery doesn’t get promoted, period. Yep… nothing screams “successful advocacy model” than hitting up the cash-strapped demographic you’re supposed to protect and promote under the threat of exclusion, am I right? In essence, you’re out there on your own, and it’s something that allegedly happens to paid members as well, if the stories of being passed over by the trolley service happen to be accurate.

So where do we go from here? Do we continue with the tried and true way of failure, or do we start anew and try a more logical approach, one that applies the reservoirs of social and cultural marketing to it’s fullest and makes use of the vast talent pool waiting to be tapped here?

Guess which way I’m leaning. Artlink has had it’s day, has had it’s say, and has had it’s way for far longer than it required, or more importantly- it has deserved. It’s time for a true leader- whether that’s personified as an individual or a group is still up for debate and eventual consensus, but I think most would agree with my POV that the need for forceful and effective leadership dedicated to every member of the Arts community, and not just those who swear allegiance under the threat of being purposefully overlooked, is crucial.

And as an aside, it also rings true that it’s way past the time when this towns art-czars should have been unseated- their history and actions thus far have proven that they only look out for themselves and their interests, and not for us as a whole, so I think the proverbial running them out on a rail is not only required, it’s something all the disparate factions of the PAS could bond over, if handled right. The resultant cookout alone would be worth the price of our collective effort, as I know more than a few artists who make a mean potato salad, and that right there, is what true camaraderie is all about.

But what of Artlink? Well, I’m okay with either them getting their act together or getting their ass handed to them. But if the plan I’ll be laying out within the next few screeds pans out, it may turn into a and/or type of situation, to use one of their sayings, and I’m good with that too. But that still leaves the question of what happens to Catrina, does it not?

Why yes- yes it does. But don’t you worry, my loyal blogiteers- she’ll still get to dance with the mayor… she’ll just have to do it on her own damn dime for once.

And when we come back… I meet the newest Art-Barbie that Roosevelt Row has to offer, lay the basic framework for a new advocacy group, and take a look at the exciting world of Artlinks finances, to see where and how they allegedly misspend their money. And there’ll be Snark as well, but you already knew that.

“Any leader who feels the pain and fights for you, support him or you lose- but if that leader doesn’t feel the pain and fight for you, don’t support him, fight for yourself, be a leader and fight for others.” – Saminu Kanti



Gentrification prefers Blands PT.3 (Seattle’s Worst)

 “It is hard not to see into the future, faced with today’s blind architecture – a thousand times more stupid and more revolting than that of other ages. How bored we shall be inside!” – Andre Breton

Ola, Blogiteers!

How are you? I for one, am slightly depressed on several levels- one of those being the fact that a vulgar and massively unqualified mango Mussolini is in charge of this already great country until either the act of impeachment or the fall of a guillotine replaces him with his equally asinine backup, a faux-Christian zealot who at best, looks like an advertisement for constipation medicine.

Dark times are ahead, and the challenges will be formidable, but I believe in my heart that in the end, we can pull together as a unified nation and make sure that *Drumpf never gets the nuclear codes or access to Twitter ever again.
*[ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnpO_RTSNmQ ]

I’m also bummed out by the absolutely horrendous prison rape scene that was this past year, and feeling pretty confident that I’m not alone in regards to this synopsis. If I were to script 2016 as a low-budget horror movie, I’d propose one of the following two scenarios as a plotline: either a psychotic New Year’s Baby (most likely from the Disco Era- I’m looking at you,1977…) has come back to seek revenge for being forced to wear a denim jumpsuit, or there’s a group of Angels sitting around, popping open sealed scrolls, and casually handing them off to white supremacists.

Sure, I did receive a ton of praise and agreement in regards to my POV as noted in my last screed, [which clocked in at 10K+ words] but when it came to following the clarion call to transform those quiet accolades into focused action, the response was “meh” at best.  As is characteristic of the PAS, the greater part sits on it’s collective ass and grouses about our relevant issues, while doing nothing to change the situation.

Sadly, this does not come as a shock- if I had to bake a casserole comprised solely of truly effective advocacy elements within the PAS, I’d barely have enough ingredients to construct a cupcake, and an utterly whiny one at that. Due to this particularly sad state of affairs, I’m seriously taking into consideration the crafting of a new rule regarding Artbitch- if you’re going to ask me to air your concerns within the PAS, than you should also have the veracity to be an ally when the pitchfork brigade arrives on my metaphorical doorstep.

To quote Confucius: “To know what is right and not to do it is the worst cowardice.” And if I were to speak frankly as I possibly could- that quality seems to be exceedingly prevalent these days among several of my so-called colleagues. Speaking of which, I didn’t see many when I decided to attend the “mixer” that Artlink threw a while back at The Grand on Central, a brand-new coffeehouse built within the bones of the gleeful decadence that was once known as Club Amsterdam.

Overall, my walking into a allegorical tigers cage was fairly pleasant, taking into account the fact that my saturnly venomous anti-Artlink screed had been posted the night before. Thank Odin that certain members of their board obviously hadn’t read it- now whether that was due to lack of interest on their part or it’s 10K plus word count, I’m not sure, but I’ll take whatever grace I can get these days.

Plus, there was also the assurance of free cheese cubes, and that alone was worth the risk..

Taken at face value, it was a fairly positive event, where Artlink’s current President Catrina Kahler outlined the organization’s future plans and introduced it’s new logo via free shirts, one of which when graciously offered, I diplomatically refused- principles and all that, you know. Believe me, the fact that my GF Ashley stating that if I acquired any more black t-shirts, she’d leave me for someone with more than two colors in their closet, had nothing to do with it. However, it does explain that whole paisley phase I went through a few months back, so if you missed it, that’s a shame- envision Anthony Michael Hall impersonating Prince, and you’ll be right on track.

As acknowledged, I gleefully attended this soiree, primarily for two reasons- one: I wanted to see what the turnout of artists directly connected with the PAS would be (extremely light), and two: I wanted to have a chat with Mrs. Kahler, if such an opening arose, to discuss the issues I wrote about in my last missive and see if a common and civil ground could be reached. I know, I know… busted sense of optimism and all that- I really need to get that fixed when I get some time off.

Granted, while she and I did get to have a civil chat in the parking lot after the event, it was hardly what I would call progress, as it’s obvious to me at least that Artlink is trying to be something it’ll never be, gambling with people who are clearly working against them, and the dearth of PAS affiliated artists at this “mixer” should have served as a huge red flag to specific insiders that Artlink is not entirely in line with what the PAS needs or wants.

Whether it is an issue of trust or disinterest, speaking objectively, one could make the valid argument that most artists in this so-called scene view Artlink with varying levels of contempt- a viewpoint somewhat validated by the lack of appearance from the majority of Creatives who keep this art-river flowing.

I noted this in my earlier screed, where I put forth the theory that some of this disdain is based on bruised ego, or a portion of trivial misunderstandings, but the one consistent thread that prevails is Artlink allegedly ignoring art-spaces, galleries, and artists who aren’t forking over dues to the organization- essentially, it’s a pay-to-play Ponzi scheme at best, in my humble opinion.

Call me old-fashioned, but I’ve always believed that if you claim to stand for something, you actually follow through with it. To clarify what I mean, I’ll kick off my shredding-to-be with Artlinks very own organization description: Artlink keeps the arts integral to the development of our city by connecting artists, business and community. Artlink supports a variety of community-based art events, including complimentary Trolley Tours during the monthly First Friday Art Walk, one of the nation’s largest self-guided art walks; a pop-up gallery program; the Infusion arts initiative; and the annual Juried Exhibition, Art Detour, and Art d’Core Gala.”

I’ve already discussed First Friday, Art Detour, the ego-stroke that is the Juried Exhibition, and Art d’Core Gala, either in passing or at great length in previous scrawlings, so I’ll refrain from going over a carcass picked so clean, the bones shine like silver. As for the Infusion Initiative and local pop-up galleries, those are actually the only solid bricks in walls built upon Jello foundations, so I’ll just give them a big thumbs-up, as I metaphorically sideswipe Artlink’s Trolley of Exclusion program.

As with most things Artlink related, it sounds great on the surface. A trolley that you can board at multiple points around the downtown center, whisks you away to explore all that our exceedingly limited art scene has to offer, and it doesn’t cost you a dime. Even our pro-602 mayor Greg Stanton, has been a guide on one of these trolleys, and it was a blast.

Seriously. The man’s comic timing is spot on.

So how in the name of *Enki, God of the **Abzu, could anyone disparage that? Sigh… it’s like you don’t know me at all.
*[ Enki is a god in Sumerian mythology, later known as Ea in Akkadian and Babylonian mythology. He was originally patron god of the city of Eridu, but later the influence of his cult spread throughout Mesopotamia and to the Canaanites, Hittites and Hurrians. **[ The Abzu {also called engur} was the name for the primeval sea below the void space of the underworld (Kur) and the earth (Ma) above. It may also refer to fresh water from underground aquifers that was given a religious fertilizing quality. Lakes, springs, rivers, wells, and other sources of fresh water were thought to draw their water from the abzu.]

Well to begin with, one must take into consideration the following two points- the first being that things aren’t what they appear to be, and the second is that I tend to find the cracks in the armor, if you know what I mean… call it a gift. While the idea that our local arts advocacy group getting in bed with the enemy [developers] is truly abhorrent- I’m more appalled by the knowledge that they’re also excluding the people they claim to represent as they simultaneously throw them under the bus.

However, I have to admit to my somewhat mild embarrassment, I’m as equally impressed by their ability to do so. Don’t get me wrong, they continue to repulse me like you cannot believe, but I’ve gotta give props where props are due. All they need is a hollow volcano, some jump-suited minions, and a few Asian henchmen wearing steel-brimmed berets, and Artlink could finally cross that subtle threshold as truly proper villains.

Granted, my assessment may be a tad overblown, but if this were a Bond film set in a deli, Artlink would be a *BGL sandwich at best.
*[Blofeld / Goldfinger / Le Chiffre]

From my outsider POV, I can’t believe in Artlink as a true advocate for the arts in Phoenix, given both their recent decisions and seemingly private agenda. Artlink is designated as a 501(c) non-profit organization, and yet it has no problem cozying up to the very people who are killing us, all while soliciting money from the very community that generally doesn’t have any- that being the artists within the scene whom they claim to support.

The susceptible ones who do pay “dues” are tagged with the moniker “articipants”, because when you join the artsy version of the Mouseketeers, a cute nickname is imperative, I guess. Now before you start screaming about how expensive it is to market our scene and to run those trolleys, I’d counter with this query: overall, is that money being truly used to it’s best effect?

In all the time I’ve been in the scene [since 1991] I’ve yet to see this promotion that Artlink claims it does. A few posters downtown and some social media shares hardly constitute a marketing blitz, and a bland tv news spot every six months or so barely dents the surface either, given the fact that the majority of this so called coverage consists of marginalizing our efforts as either quirky or cute. I cannot even begin to tell you the number of Phoenicians that I’ve had conversations with who have no idea that we or our art-related efforts such as Chaos Theory exist.

It’s pretty obvious the carpet-bagging developers didn’t know (or care) when they slithered in, but what makes their insidious infiltration even worse is the willing help they’re receiving from Artlink regarding the act of dismantling our scene, brick by brick. And if I might, let me point out that while some developers are promoting the Roosevelt Art District, they’re not doing it to push our local culture, they’re doing it to pimp condos.

And in relation to the trolley service, can anyone explain to me how exactly ignoring a huge swath of the scene helps us as a whole? Hell, allegedly there are paid articipants who aren’t even on the map they helped pay for, and skipping over those galleries who aren’t members isn’t really the best approach to cementing your reputation as the go-to advocacy group. If you’re going to have the chutzpah to state:Artlink keeps the arts integral to the development of our city by connecting artists, business and community”, shouldn’t that metaphorical umbrella cover everyone?

I get it. This s**t requires a currency flow. A lot of it. But why should artists be the source of that revenue? With all due respect, how can Artlinks board-members sleep at night knowing that artists and galleries are being bypassed unless one pays the vig of soft extortion money? Considering the level of business experience sitting on the Artlink board, is it truly wrong of me to ask why there’s seemingly no plan in place to raise funds from entities whose interest lies in helping us rather than harming us?

Believe it or not, while I may be coming off as anti-development, I’m not one of those people screaming for things to remain the same, not by a long shot. If anything, I want to see a thoughtful restructuring of the scene, that being one where we get the respect and success we deserve, while simultaneously helping to establish Phoenix as the destination for Art, not it’s pit stop on the way to somewhere else.

To further this vision of a stable and more importantly, lucrative arts district, I’d like to propose the following: an advocacy group that truly promotes the arts and it’s creators in Phoenix, rather than one that cozies up to developers whose only interest in our scene revolves around either removing us or exploiting us for their marketing. A concern that unlike Artlink, ACTUALLY DOES SOMETHING TO PROMOTE US EFFECTIVELY.

Sorry for “shouting”, but my tank at this point is topped off, and I’d like to surmise I’m not the only one who feels that way. I may be however, the only one being so publicly vocal about as of late, and that’s just disheartening.

Even more so is the fact that I have no idea of how to go about launching such a venture, and when it comes to the minutiae of such, I’m equally useless. Kind of like Trump trying his hardest to exercise impulse-control, but without the “yuge” narcissism. Seriously, who would be in charge of bringing the refreshments? Would it be the responsibility of one person, or should it be a shared by the group kind of thing? Do we have to worry about them being gluten-free, or can we just tell that one annoying twit that he can bring his own snacks if he doesn’t like it?

And don’t even get me started on who fills out the name badge stickers- we’ll be here for days.

This is definitely one time I could use some guidance, if not a kick-ass strike team. Hell, at this point I’d even accept advice from Peter Bugg- not because I think he’s brilliant, or a visionary of advocacy, its more the comfort of knowing that whatever counsel he provided would be on loan from somebody way more insightful, and that’s what I need right now- a way to make my ethereal construct a concrete reality for positive change.

The question that nags is this: if I managed to throw this party, would anybody come? And more importantly- would they be willing do the work that’s necessary to make it a success? I’d like to say “yes”, but I’ve been around too long, and my naturally inherent cynicism isn’t so easily shed given my intimate knowledge of the dysfunctional morass that presents itself as our so-called art scene.

While the artistic community does have some serious firebrands, it also suffers from an excess of human speed bumps as well- people who claim that they want change and stability, yet won’t get off their ass to do anything about it when asked. No matter which side wins, they’ll be first in line to divvy up the spoils they didn’t earn, and that just pisses me off.

To roughly paraphrase Will Smith AKA: The Fresh Prince: “If you weren’t part of my struggle, you don’t get to share in my success.” and quite honestly, after 20+ years of lessening to my artistic peeps grouse, [myself included] that’s pretty much my new mantra. The scene is changing, our galleries are closing, and the artists, once again, are getting squeezed out and replaced with the blandness of gentrification.

Beige is the new black, it seems, and apathy the native tongue.

Now I’m not suggesting that all or most of the PAS are willing participants in the ongoing marginalizing if not outright destruction of our scene, but there are also quite the number who haven’t figured out why it’s so important for us as a community to draw a line in the sand, dig our heels in, and make these scumbag developers earn every inch they’re hoping to turn into a Chipotle.

Maybe, just maybe, if we make them bleed enough, the loss of everything that’s been built can be impeded. However- all of this is pure conjecture unless we get organized, get focused, and get to work. So I’m issuing a challenge: we need to promote who we are, what we do, and why we’re so vital to this city’s future. We need to let the world know we’re here, we’re talented, and we’re just as good, if not better, than the already established art centers.

But in order for this to happen, we need a true advocacy group that represents all of us, and one that doesn’t depend on taking dues from the very demographic that really doesn’t have the scratch. One without politics, one without soft corruption, and one that does what it says it does. In other words, one that isn’t based on the model of Artlink.

We’ve already paid our dues, to no reward. Now is the time for a new approach. As I noted earlier, I have no idea how to go about this, but I’m certain several of my readers do, and your input is needed ASAP. If you’re sick of an under-promoted, two night a month, marginalized and unprofitable scene, now is the time to come together and do something about it.

Let’s get organized. Let’s focus. Let’s freaking win. The 602 rocks. And it’s time to show it to everybody within distance and reach.

Now that I’ve unleashed the ferrets of destiny, let’s discuss another subject, that being the ongoing parceling of our city to developers from somewhere else, it seems that despite the deafening outcry from both the PAS and the Mayors office, the building that formerly housed the funkiness that was Circle Records is to be demolished to make room for… you guessed it, another obviously necessary high-end development.

To be fair, the building has sat empty for more than a few years, but even still, how hard would it be to incorporate some of it’s character into the current plan without the developer using the alleged (yet credible) threat of total destruction as a means to unethically acquire a GIPLET? Yep… nothing says “we want to be a vital part of your community” like well… going out and blithely holding hostage that which makes the community unique so you can pad your coffers.

Considering how many people now come downtown for the express purpose of photographing our public art alone, you’d think that somebody in Empire’s head office would’ve seen the PR value of incorporating the building into their project on some level, rather than risking the possibility of offending the surrounding community it has to eventually conduct business in.

Does anyone else get the feeling that if you tied strings around the necks of some of Empire’s executives, that you could theoretically use their heads as balloons? Sorry. That was rude of me. For all I know, they could be very nice people who are just trying to do their job in the way thebest know how. Granted, that would be as unethical and smugly arrogant as humanly possible,

but at least they have the semblance of a work ethic.

And despite their recent announcement to rent out ten units to Artists, I’d point out that this wasn’t an option that many were seemingly aware of when this project was first announced. I’d cynically suggest once again that PR cynicism won out over actual community concern, but what do I know, as I’m not one of those people who regards begrudging crumbs tossed our way as a victory at any level. It’s reminiscent of being invited to a wealthy kids birthday party where you only serve as a means for the host to prove he knows ordinary people- your presence is required, but essentially irrelevant in the end.

In fact, I think that once they finish building their little project over the corpse of what was once a visually striking piece of history, we should welcome them to the PAS utilizing our talents and creativity in the way we best know how. Since they’re threatening to destroy some irreplaceable character, all for the sake of yet another undeserved tax break, I say we return the favor in spades- after all, as Artists it’s our innate responsibility to use our abilities to creatively shape the world as we see fit, and I’d hate to think that we would ever be lax in our aesthetic duties.

Besides, is there a better way to say “welcome to our community” than with the gift of art? I say nay. Nay, I say. So here’s a metaphorical idea, not to be taken as an actual suggestion of seriousness, mind you- it’s presented more as a delightful “what if” type of scenario. We’re slated to lose an architectural icon, right? Wouldn’t it be karmic if we could symbolically honor that void by using those talents that these developers apparently have no respect for. Once they finish building that perfect little slice of overpriced utopia they’re so hell-bent on fabricating, I think it’d be hilarious if someone took on the task of decorating it… on a daily basis.

But in what form? Well, there’s yarn-bombing, wheat-paste, sticker art, etching, and the good old stand-by: spray paint. In a truly just world, that sucker would be so consistently graffed up that 1/3 of their annual maintenance budget would be them just trying to keep it clean. Not out of any form of maliciousness, mind you, it would simply be our way of sharing our unique gifts with a company that needs to learn to appreciate where they are and who really runs the show.

Sure, we may not be a completely cohesive voting block (yet) but we still can throw one hell of a spanner in the works if need be. Gah. So sick of these developer dim-wits who see a vibrant community and think: “Wow… this place is awesome! All it really needs to be perfect is a gluten-free Starbucks and a cruelty-free Baby Gap!”

Fortunately, as I write this, there are several forces at play trying desperately to countermand this particular asinine act of greed wrapped in the bacon of stupidity, and as the situation develops, I’ll try my best to keep you all up to date. But moving forward, here’s why this particular building shouldn’t have been yet another statistic in Phoenix’s seemingly never-ending drive to do half-ass at full throttle- it’s distinctive, and we’re quickly running out of the Phoenix-specific architecture that could define us nationwide.

What do I mean by this? My answer is relatively simple- unlike the majority of other large-scale urban centers, Phoenix really doesn’t possess iconic architecture in the same way that those cities do. Yes, we have some Frank Lloyd Wright buildings and some other noted architects well represented here if I were to be fair, but when it comes to naming a downtown specific icon amongst the ongoing maw of development, most people come up way short in the designation game.

At best, you’ve probably thought of the following: Luhr’s Tower, the Orpheum Theatre, and the Westward Ho, made famous by it’s brief inclusion in Hitchcock’s “Psycho“, and that’s a problem.

I’m not suggesting we erect a building shaped like a sombrero or a giant cactus, but it would be nice to see a development that could become iconic. Whether you believe it to be equitable or not, cities are generally represented by their architecture, and in that department, we look more like a badly constructed clone of Los Angeles, rather than the unique personality we are.

Think about Chicago, or New York concerning the same question, and you most likely came up with no less than ten, if not more, specifically distinctive totems to the architectural gods.

From a realistic pov, this does make some sort of perverted sense- we’re not land-locked in the same way as NYC is, allowing the far easier path of demolition versus the much more complicated process of rehabilitation, nor do we seemingly have the same amount of constraint placed upon what does (or doesn’t) constitute a preservation worthy structure. Granted, I’m most likely off in that particular assessment, but there does seem to be more of a “tear-down town” mentality at work in our particular burg, an observation noted by the Phoenix New Times in an identically titled article* way back in 2006, when it and I were still on speaking terms.
*[Link:  http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/news/tear-down-town-6434066]

I’m also quoted in the article, being described as “a former New Yorker who’s made a name for himself photographing the vestiges of Phoenix’s fast-dying architectural history”– which is probably why I contributed several photographs to the print version, free of charge. Tell me I’m pretty, and I will follow you home. Not kidding.

So here I am a few mere years later, watching my city get parceled out like pizza slices at a kids birthday party, and all I can think is “wow… this Peter Piperesque abomination sucks- no flavor, no style, and bargain-basement pepperoni at best.”

Don’t get me wrong, a part of me is happy to see Phoenix get some long-overdue and much-needed personal attention, but the larger part is highly concerned that my city is sleeping with someone who feels she isn’t hip enough to show off to their out of town friends. And I say this as a former New Yorker who penned a love note (of sorts)  hand-delivered as a *collaboration with local Filmmaker Douglas Proce
*[ Link:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQkijwuuwj0 ]

In it, I wax rhapsodic about what this city is and isn’t, and deliver a dark deep secret, which you’ll have to go watch to discover. Sorry, but I’m painfully aware of the value of marketing and it’s reach, so you’ll just have to take some time and enjoy me in the cinematic flesh.

(Playing Angry Birds on my phone while I wait…)
Oh good, you’re back. As I was saying…

While I do view the touted renaissance occurring in this city as a sign of positivity in general, I do have a list of concerns- I was here back when the ballpark came in and decimated what was at that time, the gritty base of the PAS. It was supposed to revitalize the city, just like the debacle known as Patriots Park was guaranteed [and failed] to do, and while that ugly as sin architectural behemoth that passes for a shopping and entertainment complex off of Jefferson has brought some focus into the downtown area, it also serves as a prime example of what not to do with concrete and glass.

Seriously. I would bribe Thor himself to smash that grey lifeless box flatter than Kirsten Stewarts acting ability if I could simply remember his cell number. It only serves to prove yet again that when it comes to doing something completely half-ass, Phoenix drives the throttle through the symbolic floorboards and into the street below. I’ve always maintained that in order to build a community, it must have the following elements involved- grocery stores within walking distance, places to go, places to eat, places to take the family, places to chill, and places to be an adult when the time calls for it. Bars, cafes, bookstores and the like- the strip clubs can come later.

Sorry, Dad… I’m just watching out for the kids.

And traversing this metaphorical land shouldn’t require a car and a water truck due to shade structures being an almost alien concept- all the figurative bases should be covered and planned first before a shovel hits dirt, yet another glaringly obvious misstep in regards to the majority of these so-called “developments”. The creation of history is a one time experience. You’d better get it right coming out of the gate, a lesson Phoenix has not only yet to learn, it has yet to read.

Pardon my inherent skepticism, but how hard would it be to simply take what works from other metropolitan centers and jettison what doesn’t? It’s not like we’re buying wholesale from IKEA, we have multiple choices as to how our cultural and architectural identity is being assembled, no matter what these predatory developers order.

And therein lies the root of the problem- it’s not the masses dictating these changes to our city, it’s the faceless corporations putting people over profit, uniformity before uniqueness, and mirthlessly entombing our rapidly vanishing culture under cloned concrete- the process helped, I assume cynically, by some strategically placed* (and pre-greased) local politicos willing to look the other way so they can line their pockets as they fatten their re-election war chests.
*[Allegedly, of course.]

Some clarity as to where I’m going with this is probably in order, so here it is: if we’re going to present our city as an up and coming contender, shouldn’t we offer it up as something that’s truly original, not just another variance on a theme that already exists? In regards to the newest buildings I’ve seen springing up like errant weeds, the overall aesthetic that strikes is of a Walgreens having had sex with a scrap yard, and then abandoning the resulting child at a WalMart.

Take a long hard look around- there is nothing of us as a community in these structures, and the majority of the new development has as much to do with the nature of Phoenix as Twilight has to do with fine cinema. Metal-clad. No effective shade structures. Boxy. Ugly. Over-priced. And in the middle of a huge service desert. Essentially, a pastiche of styles laid haphazardly, is what we’ve been sold, and this city has bought it, hook, line and sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.

And don’t even get me started on how little free parking exists anymore in the area in and outside of downtown. In fact, the parking garage that backs up to the coffee-shop where I’m currently writing this from, has a strictly enforced two hour time limit, and that is a royal pain in the ass, no matter what angle you look at it from.

What a sales pitch for our city:

Come to beautiful, redeveloped downtown Phoenix- enjoy our newest attractions (bars and a few restaurants, mostly) and then go home after dinner, because the galleries aren’t open save for two nights a month, along with the fact that there’s nothing to really check out if you’re not into theatre, and oh yes, unlike other established metropolitan areas, we don’t possess a walk-able district full of shopping, cafes, or other pursuits that constitute a true city center- you know, the kind that keeps people downtown and spending their money?

 In closing, good luck finding parking that doesn’t treat your wallet like a shower scene from a 70’s blaxploitation prison movie, and try to have a good time.”

Yessir. Cannot possibly see any other outcome for this concept than it working out fabulously, can you? Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact we’re coming up on the map, but it has to be done with the key element of common sense and community incorporated into the development, lest we repeat the numerous mistakes of the past. What is truly needed in the arts district is a zone where there exists combined living and work spaces that the artists can actually afford, along with the implementation of an actual community versus a pre-manufactured one.

In the long run, it’s mediocrity that’ll bring down this era of rebirth, as everyone seems to be struggling to find a balance between the commercial and the creative, and if that isn’t troubling, it should be. One of the foremost hooks that a lot of these developers use in their advertising is the proximity to the PAS, and that in itself, is a tad bit disingenuous, if one looks at it with a cynical eye.

As rents rise, it forces out the creative community by way of financial gentrification, which in turn, eliminates the reason most people moved there in the first place. You cant have an arts district if the artists cant afford to live/work there, now can you? Of course not. But the majority of what’s being built doesn’t see the inherent value in incorporating art as a matter of first recourse.

To be honest, there are a few projects that have, but even then, it’s still skewed towards the wrong side of things, as proven by this article from my old pals over at the *Phoenix New Times.
*[Link: http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/arts/such-styles-to-paint-murals-at-new-proxy-333-development-in-downtown-phoenix-8234987 ]

The article is actually about two friends of mine who have been commissioned to do interior murals for some upcoming downtown developments, (yay, local art!) but the truly interesting part for me is the comments of one Bryan Fasulo, a regional property manager for the Pinnacle Living project, who within the article, states:

“This is a product type never built in Phoenix before. We imported it from Seattle.”

What they’ve also apparently imported is overpriced rent, as the article goes on to subsequently say the following:

“It’s a reference to the development’s 10 two-story work/live units with frontage windows, designed for artists or others who want a combined studio or office and living space. These 700 square-foot live/work loft units have one bedroom and one bathroom, and run $1,750 per month. But Proxy 333 also includes more traditional units – including studios, and several types of one- and two-bedroom spaces.

The most basic studio, with a single bathroom, has 422 square feet and runs $1,025 per month. The largest unit, a two-bedroom and two-bathroom space measuring 878 square feet, runs $2,100 per month.”

Gee, thanks Seattle! If there’s one thing Phoenix artists have been lacking, its rent that’s an average of three times what they’ve been used to paying for studio space! But hey, at least they’ll be able to brag about the Seattle vibe that permeates their overpriced box, right?

Now, I know more than a few of you reading this think I’m being a cynical Charlotte for the sake of just having something to complain about, and typically, you might be able to make an impassioned argument for that pov, so as a counterbalance, I offer this comment of super positivity from Dan Tilton, the founder of [what else?] Tilton Development:

 “We’re excited about being located in a more historic area and arts district. It’s important to us that we incorporate the Roosevelt art district feel.”

On the surface, that sounds well… almost like a good thing, doesn’t it? I mean, they’re going to incorporate local art, promote the arts district, and give local artists a high-end showcase of sorts, which in a larger sense. is awesome- if one is only looking at the surface, that is. For one thing, how is this Seattle import “located” in the Arts District exactly? While it’s not a few miles away from the district, it’s hardly a stones throw either, and taking into consideration that said project is being built on a previously vacant dirt lot, the term “historic” seems a tad bit of a stretch, even by the atypical low standards of marketing.

Take particular note of the not so subtle reference to our burgeoning creative center, that being where Tilton glibly praises ” the Roosevelt art district feel“, versus the Roosevelt Art Community itself, which in my humble opinion, sounds more like a manipulative PR sound-bite, rather than a declaration of support for the community that made the area truly commercially viable in the first place. PHOENIX Magazine featured an excellent *piece in regards to some of these issues back in March of 2016, (wherein I’m actually quoted playing devils advocate) regarding the balance between culture and the coin, but the truth of the matter is that I’m a great deal more cynical than the article suggests.
*[Link: http://www.phoenixmag.com/hot-topics/row-on-the-row.html ]

Shocking, that.

In my simple opinion, I’m seeing income before individuals, cynicism before cultivation, and arrogant design before architectural logic. Speaking frankly, this city’s architecture should reflect our disinclined involvement as one of Hell’s time-share locations, a place where four months out of the year, you can bake a Beef Wellington within the confines of your car- something these Seattle imports keep ignoring.

Need proof? The installation of giant metal heat radiating golf tees of Death at Third and Roosevelt should convince you. That is, providing you don’t burst into flame first. And to call attention to a more pertinent issue, who precisely is the demographic they’re marketing to? It sure as hell isn’t your typical Phoenix-based artist. For the amount of money they’re charging for rent, you could easily go buy a house.With a garage. And a yard. Possibly a dog. One named His Royal Fluffyness Commander Wagtail, by way of example.

Not to mention neighbors who while nice overall, haven’t really gone out of their way to invite you back to the annual block party BBQ since that unfortunate “drunken accident” with the pickle relish some time ago. The point I’m trying to make is this- from a tenants POV, you’re not really getting much. Sure, you’ll be in direct proximity to the Phoenix Art Museum [jealous!!], but the service desert will be an issue for some time, and due to the disturbingly rapid gentrification of the arts district, I have grave doubts that it’ll remain a salient marketing point for the next five years.

Hell, Roosevelt Row (minus 5th street) is so insipidly bland now, I’m wondering how long it will be before it buys a beige suit and goes to work as an insurance adjuster.
[Please send your hate email to the usual address, thank you.]

To be perfectly clear- I AM NOT ANTI-DEVELOPMENT. I am however, very much pro-community, and there seems to be a dearth of logic in that department where Phoenix’s rebirth is concerned. I say again, would it be truly that hard to find an architect who could design a truly unique urban metropolis for us that doesn’t utilize the aesthetic of a Los Angeles cookie cutter?

Think of the possibilities of an architectural renaissance that was ideologically dedicated to our city and it’s uniqueness. Practical shade structures versus modernist twattle that serves no master other than the decorative, the incorporation of construction materials that release their heat during the day, so that at night, we can actually go outside, versus having to hide from the Gehry-inspired fryscrapers every developer seems keen on erecting in our fair city.

And along those lines, oh great and wholly incompetent city-planning sages who thought the now moved giant flower pots / unintended trash cans along Roosevelt were a good idea- why didn’t you erect some goddamn shade-structures down that griddle strip with perhaps some indigenous low water plants instead?

Let me guess… not  “Seattle” enough, right?

F**k everywhere else that you’re trying to turn Phoenix into, and while I’m at it- f**k your stance that this city needs a Los Angeles facelift. If ever I feel the need to engage in pretentiousness with plasticene people, I’ve already got Scottsdale as a go-to. See, this is the stuff that keeps me up at night muttering to myself, which in turn, makes my neighbors think that perhaps making eye contact with me is not the brightest of ideas.`

And when it comes to said concepts of inspiration, maybe someone can explain to me why it is that for a city which claims to love both the Arts and it’s creators, there’s seemingly no plan in place to help preserve that which allows this conjoined duo to thrive in place. At the risk of sounding like a petulant child calling dibs, shouldn’t the fact that we were here first have some sort of significance?

I’d say “yes”, but let’s face it- the diminutive possibility that in regards to my overview, I may be a tad biased, is almost an established certainty. The actual reality is more likely that the die has been cast, the foundations are set, and that the virtuous will either crumble into dust or be crudely malformed into monuments highlighting the ugliness of rampant hubris and inadequate design.

The somewhat overrated author Ayn Rand coined a term for such actions by people of limited creativity, that being “second-handers” whose description from the novel “The Fountainhead” states: “That, precisely, is the deadliness of second-handers. They have no concern for facts, ideas, work. They’re concerned only with people. They don’t ask: ‘Is this true?’ They ask: ‘Is this what others think is true?’ Not to judge, but to repeat. Not to do, but to give the impression of doing. Not creation, but show. Not ability, but friendship. Not merit, but pull.

What would happen to the world without those who do, think, work, produce? Those are the egotists. You don’t think through another’s brain and you don’t work through another’s hands.

When you suspend your faculty of independent judgment, you suspend consciousness. To stop consciousness is to stop life.”

So given the fact we’re battling the seemingly unstoppable juggernaut of misdirected progress, does that mean we should sit back and accept what may become our inevitable fate? The rejoin to this question can be answered in one of two ways, in the form of either a long or short retort.

Short: No. Long: Oh, Hell no. The only truly noble causes worth fighting for are the lost ones, as the rest are generally overstocked with help, and the perception of being lost is solely dependent on where one is standing at that particular moment- no more, no less. You don’t burn down your house if the kitchen is dirty, so why should we stop fighting to preserve what we both built and believe in?

But as I’ve noted throughout the many years and with my many words- I’m a cynic. I put great stock in Humanity, not so much (if at all) in the individual people who comprise it as a whole.

Will the Creatives in this town finally stop squabbling over crumbs and purposeful distractions to come together and finally start shaping their destiny, or will they continue to let ineffectual entities like Artlink keep them underappreciated and marginalized, their efforts up to be exploited by the lowest bidder? Will the city of Phoenix ever establish a clearly defined Arts District that’s actually affordable for both the Arts and it’s Creators, devoid of the gentrification insipidness, or will they just keep parceling it out like so many gift bags at a church bazaar?

This gives rise to my final thought- will we ever get an architect that can create something that stands as a beacon to our city and it’s uniqueness, or will we just settle for yet another ill-fitting sweater because we’re the middle child when it comes to city planning? “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.” once said Thomas Edison- “The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” Does Phoenix have the ability to take a cue from the etymology of it’s name, or will it just be still and burn?

More importantly, will it’s citizens?

“Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.”- Jane Jacobs, The Death of Great American Cities

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

Gentrification prefers Blands Pt.2 (The Weakest Link)

“Any halfway clever devil would decorate the highway to Hell as beautiful as possible.” – Criss Jani, Healology

Hello Blogiteers!

It has been a dizzying blur of activity at the Lair of Snarkitude lately. I cleaned out the shark pool, polished up the ol’ Giant Laser Death Ray to a mirror finish, sold some older art pieces, donated some frames to a few fellow artists, and acquainted myself with the joy of programming my newhi-tech TV, but only after setting aside the proper amount of mourning time for it’s predecessor, which finally gave up the cathode ray a week prior.

In retrospect, it’s peculiar habit of freezing whenever religiconist Joel Osteen came on should have been regarded as some sort of warning sign, but as they say- hindsight is always 20/20. A moment of respectful silence please, for a television that came in with Clerks, The Animated Series, and went solidly out with Marvel’s Agents of Shield.

By the way, if you’re going to get rid of a sixteen-year old, formerly state of the art beast as such, take a moment to reflect upon the last and only time you had to move it. Except you’re taking it off the tv stand and going down three flights of stairs this time, and you no longer have good abs, the ability to balance, or a working back, but I digress.

So after bribing a good friend with a free dinner to assist me in it’s removal, and perhaps failing to mention that said set was the reason why when things fall to the floor, I’ve been leaving them there, it was back to knocking out the blessays I’ve become notorious for, but unbeknownst to me, there were dramatic events right around the corner that would require my attention… and possibly the help of some 80’s era mercenaries.

Seriously. You can pick up the services of Steven Seagal and Dolph Lundgren for almost next to nothing, if you just happen to be at the right Home Depot, at just the right time.

It all started with a simple email:
—————————————————————————
From: Sophie Gabrielle,
Lome Togo
West Africa

Dearest

I am writing this mail to you with tears and sorrow from my heart with due respect trust and humanity I appeal to exercise a little patience and read this mail I send to you.

After going through your profile I become interested in disclosing everything about myself to you I am Sophie Gabrielle the only daughter of late Mr and Mrs Evans Joseph Gabrielle.

Please dearest, let us reason together and have trust in God I am seeking your assistance to help me transfer my inheritance money the sum of ($6.500,000.00) (six million Five Hundred Thousand United sate dollars)  United State American dollars Into your account please it is more than urgent because of my life is in danger. I am willing to compensate you for your effort after the successful transfer of my inheritance money into your account overseas and I will tell you more about myself when i receive your mail. responds me as Quickly as possible.privatemail:sophiegabrielle71@yahoo.com

Thanks.
Yours in God love
Ms. Sophie Gabrielle
————————————————————————————-
Wow. A grammar-challenged damsel in distress, a fortune to be had, and the opportunity for an action sequence montage, all while sporting the camouflage pants and black mesh t-shirt that I purchased at Walmart- how could any rational human being refuse? So I boarded my vintage B-29, headed straight to Lome Togo, a city once known as “the Paris of Africa”, fully determined to save the girl, reap my fortune, and dispatch the regional warlord that was threatening the peace with a witty quip and my crack team of ninja ferrets.

You know. Like you do?

Unfortunately, I did forget a few things… for instance, it’s really hard to declare thirty crates of grenades, rocket launchers, and assorted machine guns as “sport-fishing supplies” at Customs, and forget about trying to pass off the previously aforementioned ferrets as actors in a traveling road show production of “Glee”- Lome Togo as it turns out, has both a strong dislike for musical theater and overly furry actors.

Damn you, cruel fate. Damn you to New Jersey.

So, after an awkward side trip to a room outfitted with swarthy men wearing rubber gloves, I killed the time waiting to return home pounding out yet another random screed regarding the obvious problems currently affecting the ol’ PAS, that being the rapidly burgeoning over-development at a pace that would make the Flash look like he’s wading through molasses, while wearing Frankenstein boots.

Sure, there’s public art springing up faster than one can document, as well as a creatively inspired repurposed shipping container development on Grand Avenue, but the rent is as high as a house payment, but thank Odin it’s saving grace is that it’s exceedingly… um… trendy. And all this comes on the heels of even more over-priced condos being built, versus the much more desperately needed affordable live/work spaces for the artists who’ve made the area economically viable.

Speaking of which, it seems that a new ripple has been recently introduced into the waters of the PAS, and it’s kind of disturbing, even if you try to look at it with an unprejudiced eye. Turns out that this year’s Artlink Juried Exhibition had a new dance partner, and its not someone you’d expect to have the best interest of our community at heart.

Is it an arts-based political concern? Nope. Surely, it must be an organization dedicated to directly promoting the Arts and the creators of such, right? Wrong again. Well then- certainly an independent yet focused, group of art-gypsies who live their lives defined only by their artistic aesthetic practiced from the safety of a Volkswagen micro-camper have stepped up to the plate?

Sigh… it’s like you’ve never played this game before. Ok, ok…. I’ll let you all off the hook.

Artlink, our so called local arts advocacy organization, has willingly gotten in bed with a corporation who at best, somewhat resembles a sheep-skin clad wolf who’s allegorically carrying 27 different kinds of venereal gentrification disease- if I had Spidey-sense, I’m pretty sure it would be tingling like a mother*ucker by now, since six of those previously existed only in a Starbucks lavatory.

This new champion of the Arts in Downtown Phoenix comes to us via *Colorado, in the form of a development group which travels these fruited lands under the moniker of Baron Properties.
*[The capitol of which btw, is the birthplace of the cheeseburger. Neat, huh?]

I’m sorry… who exactly, again?

Well, they’re the company that razed the former 307 lounge (AKA:Greenhaus in it’s last incarnation) that contained irreplaceable murals by Ted De Grazia to make way for iLuminate, an 111 unit apartment complex, whose prices will reportedly start at $1000 for an 800 sq. foot apartment. This ugly as sin monstrosity sits right next door to The MonOrchid, and as detailed by MonOrchid’s owner Wayne Rainey, that inherent unattractiveness is allegedly more than skin deep:

“I”ve done everything in my power to be an understanding neighbor but Baron just does not care about this community or even their own future residents. They destroyed access to MonOrchid and plan on having the residents bring in the moving trucks in the alley blocking our access.

On top of that, they’ve completely destroyed our parking lot and although they are re-pouring concrete for the entire alley, they won’t pour the four parking places they destroyed. It’s been a nightmare being next to this and it looks like it’s not going to get any better. I guess the biggest disappointment is the absolute disregard for anything not in their plan. They’ve depleted any good will they would have had. They’ve actually created issues that will go on for years because of cheapskate planning.

They moved power lines across the alley – my building rather than underground them- creating a future expense for me when I want rooftop amenities. Their construction team has consistently parked in our lot and often a trailer blocks half the lot at once.”

And the response from our fair city to these complaints? Crickets… because hey- in order to create a cultural void, you gotta break a few communities, long-term damage be damned. I’ve said it before, and I’ll bet dollars to donuts I’ll be saying it again, this city is needier than a gaggle of nerds trying to score Stan Lee appearance tickets at Comi-con. If allowing yourself to be walked on till you were flatter than a sheet of paper was a skill-set, Phoenix could literally glide under a cockroach doing the limbo with room enough to spare.

And speaking of metaphorical pests, this truly infuriating little tidbit was posted on Baron’s Illuminate Projects FaceBook Page way back on July 27th: “This captivating mural created by artist Ettore “Ted” DeGrazia was one of two pieces featured at Green Haus Gallery in Downtown Phoenix. Before the Green Haus, this building was home to the historical 307 Lounge, known for being a safe haven for Phoenix’s LGBT community. Legend has it, DeGrazia began painting this 47-foot mural 65 years ago to pay off a bar tab at the lounge!

 Though, it wasn’t possible for Baron Properties to preserve this incredible work of art and history, we were able to salvage some of the pieces which have been fabricated into the framework of iLuminate. Along with keeping the memory of DeGrazia’s artwork alive through reconstruction, iLuminate will also feature a plaque dedicated to the Phoenix LGBT community, citing the symbolism of the 307 Lounge and what that establishment has meant to this group of people.

We understand the importance of preserving the integrity of the history and art that embodies Roosevelt Row. Our hope is not to transform this notorious neighborhood, but to enhance and become a part of it.

Thank you, Downtown Phoenix, for welcoming us and allowing us to be apart of your culture!”

A comment or two regarding this oozing with hypocrisy joke of a public statement? I’d like to call attention to the fact that any negative comments left on their FaceBook page were allegedly being removed by Baron as fast as they were posted, so not only could they purportedly be regarded as unethical, one could surmise by those rumored actions that they’re also cravens too.

These carpetbaggers come in, flatten the place, erect metal monstrosities, incubate the cancer of gentrification which in turn, drives the artists out, all while completely making a mockery of their own pledge “not to transform this notorious neighborhood, but to enhance and become a part of it” and then as a closer, smugly note that this reformed landscape was somehow tarnished until they graced us with their presence? While it’s true that none of their efforts to hasten the demise of both the building and the murals contained within were illegal in any sense of the word, their conceited reference to this mostly-transformed-by-artists neighborhood as “notorious” is well… just all shades of faux-rusted cojones.

There is, if one is to believe the obvious PR slant, an upside- according to *Scott Fisher, the principal for the project, the new development will have “space” for local art and “historic” pictures of Roosevelt Row, as well as displaying the brand new and already installed Lauren Lee mural [which is incredible] to replace the previous one that was destroyed in tandem when the building was demolished.

Yep… nothing says “we’re part of a community” like an inset plaque and some historically random sepia-toned photographs depicting what was once a uniquely vital area before it was demolished, bulldozed flat, and had insipid cookie cutter aesthetics erected over it’s corpse.
*[Link: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix/2015/04/17/downtown-phoenix-roosevelt-row-arts-district/25886609/]

Granted, I’m being cynical as usual, but if I may, I’d like to call attention to a duo of critical, yet oddly unnoticed points. First: what is “space” as defined by Mr. Fisher? Is it the size of a standard room? A hallway where you can hang three of four pieces? A bathroom behind the maintenance corridor? Specifics trump vagaries, and I’m all about the details. Second; where the new exterior mural is concerned, Baron didn’t seem too interested in providing a wall until the public outcry demanded it, so forgive me if I’m taking their 5k “Baron Prize” at this years Artink Juried Exhibition as nothing more than a disingenuous PR stunt to curry favor among the creative class it’s so far successfully exploiting.

As a long time local business owner and Creative, Wayne Rainey wasn’t content with taking his ongoing problems with Baron sitting down- in fact, he took them on headfirst via this years Exhibition, submitting a work depicting in one vivid image the impact of Baron’s influence.

As described by Lynn Trimble of the Phoenix New Times in her *review of the Exhibition: ” Titled Illumination, it’s a nighttime capture of construction debris from the properties destroyed in March 2015 to make way for iLuminate, which is one of two Baron Properties multi-level housing developments currently under construction at the intersection of Roosevelt and Third streets, iLuminate sits adjacent to monOrchid, Rainey’s arts and events space.

Rainey’s intention with the piece is clear. He’s voiced strong criticism of Baron Properties through social media, and expressed his concern that artists who partner with Baron Properties or other developers who demolish beloved buildings are taking part in the demise of their own arts community.

Within hours of Artlink wrapping up its single-day exhibition, Rainey posted comments on his Facebook page that included the following, and he’s posted additional comments since: “Well that was an interesting night. It had all the components of a good drama with no casualties except perhaps an arts district. If only there were an organization present, that promoted the arts and artists, that could have stood erect and told Baron Properties that we are not the cheap sluts you take us for and what you’re trying to buy is not for sale.”

After Baron Properties demolished a building bearing Lauren Lee’s Three Birds mural to make way for iLuminate, it commissioned Lee to create mural-inspired panels collectively called Three Birds in Flight, which they’ve already mounted on iLuminate’s west-facing façade.

Rainey also called out Artlink in his post on exhibition night, writing, “ArtLink is dead. It died the minute it wed the Dev that tore into our heart.” For Rainey, art took the form of activism. And activism took the form of art. 

His Illuminated is a clarion call from an arts district in distress. And its presence in this show shifts the entire exhibition from showcase of Arizona talent to conversation-starter about the relationship of art and commercial interests.”
*[Link: http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/arts/wayne-rainey-demolition-photo-stands-out-at-2016-juried-artlink-exhibition-at-heard-museum-8662285]

I literally couldn’t have said it better myself. In fact, I didn’t- so nice work, Lynn. Kudos.

However, the drama swirling around Artlink’s decision to ally itself with a developer who’s best interests do not even remotely mirror our own was just starting to pick up speed, aided equally by Rainey’s decision to resign from the organization directly after the event, and Artlink’s amazingly tone-deaf *response to his departure and Lynn Trimble’s PNT article.
*[Link: https://artlinkphoenix.com/a-statement-on-the-juried-exhibition/]

As it reads, Artlink structures the non-named Rainey’s discontent as nothing more than the sour grapes of an artist whose work wasn’t selected for award or purchase, a slant that in the eyes of many of my fellow colleagues who talked with me at this years Chaos Theory, was not to be found contained in the article itself, or even within Rainey’s comments online- an outlook that according to those whom find Rainey to be a divisive figure in the PAS, is just flat wrong.

And they’ll inform you of this POV… repeatedly. Half of the time, you don’t even have to ask, truth be told. Regardless of other peoples experiences, I’ve never had any sort of issue with my fellow name-sake, but that’s not really the point I’m trying to make here. If I ate a Ding-Dong for every clash between fact and the concept of ego in regards to the PAS, I’d be in a diabetic sugar coma so deep that I’d need dwarves and a sassy singing princess to wake me up.

And when one considers that the majority of Disney heroines are typically drawn as being between the ages of 13 to 17, it’s going to be quite a long time before somebody shows up who’s truly age-appropriate to rescue me without my having to be registered on a special list afterwards.

Getting back on track, even from an outside scrutiny, Artlink’s statement still comes off as a painfully evident attempt at diverting the focus as to why they and Baron were metaphorically oiling the spawn-hammer in the first place. Put it this way- I’ll stand with those I don’t like, and make limited deals with the Devil, but only whereas the end rewards are concerned- and Baron’s goals are nowhere near in line with where the PAS needs to be as an arts presence ten years from now.

To further clarify my POV, I’m also not suggesting for a second that our artists should be passing up any of the crumbs that Baron is condescendingly tossing our way either- as a mercenary capitalist, it would be duplicitous of me to do so, as I’m all about getting my bills paid in the end. You can’t create if you’re living in what used to be a refrigerator box kids, and careers are fueled by money, whether you like it or not.

 What I would add as a snarky disclaimer of sorts is to state that eventually, the offal will stop falling off the table, so stock up while you can, kids- winter is coming, and it’s way closer than you think.

 This particular state of being has been partially aided by the curveball Baron threw whilst I was writing this, the latest lyrically salient ode to the clusterf**k that the PAS has become. In yet another obvious PR stunt designed to soothe it’s detractors, Baron has decided to launch the following community outreach, located at: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix/2016/10/14/phoenix-roosevelt-row-residents-get-rebates-buying-local-art/92059190/]

For those of you who hate reading, I’ll give you some edited context:

“Baron Properties and the non-profit Artlink announced Friday a voucher program that will allow residents to purchase art pieces and receive a discount on their rent in return. The organizations said the initiative aims to connect new downtown Phoenix dwellers to the surrounding arts community, and is unprecedented as far as they know.

The reimbursements will start at $250 but could be more based on availability, said Liz Schloss, president of operations for Baron Properties.

Incoming residents who use the art vouchers can find a list of participating artists, galleries and art spaces at artlinkphoenix.com. Options include Roosevelt Row spaces like Eye Lounge and Phoenix Center for the Arts. Tenants will have 60 days from move in to redeem the voucher with a receipt of their purchases, according to the press release. In addition to the vouchers, Baron Properties also sponsored its first “Baron Grand Prize” for a painting that will be installed in iLuminate. Artlink facilitated the competition.

Both Linear and iLuminate feature pieces from local artists, Schloss said. “We did not purchase anything from a store,” she said.”” 

On the surface, this all sounds f**king great- the artists get to make a few bucks, boost their career development, and hopefully acquire solid long-term patrons, all while the new incoming residents are exposed to the amazing talent and vitality that constitutes the PAS- now let’s all hold hands and sing Kumbaya in praise of our new Artopia, while slamming down a Coke in the old-school bottle.

And as soon as we’re done with our syrupy melodics, I’m going to take that bottle, smash it up against the nearest faux-rusted wall I can find, and use it’s jagged edges to shred this idealistically saccharine vision to dripping atoms of irrelevance. Now, I do know what you’re thinking, and to a point, you’d be correct. It’s kind of dickish to look a gift-whore in the mouth, even if their intentions are (in my pov) obviously and sincerely suspect.

But in my limited defense, I’d also opine that the people who are celebrating this on-the-surface-only “gift” are failing miserably to see the endgame, and are willfully ignorant of what the true cost will be in the end, and that would be the end of our scene itself. Why would I say this? It stems from how the deal is structured, and how fallout from those carefully crafted words will hurt us as a whole.

From: https://artlinkphoenix.com/voucher-program-gives-new-downtown-phoenix-residents-a-rent-discount-for-buying-art/

“This program reflects Baron’s and Artlink’s mutual vision of connecting artists, businesses and the public.New Baron residents will visit the Articipant Directory on artlinkphx.org to find Visual Artists, Galleries, and Art Spaces where they can purchase artwork. 

Following the purchase from these directory categories, Baron Properties will provide residents with a rent reimbursement. This leasing incentive is available to all new residents of iLuminate and Linear, with an expiration period of sixty days from the date of move in. Art & Home will be accessible for a limited time and the value of these art vouchers may vary based on availability.”

I’m assuming most of you see the first concern immediately- if you’re not affiliated with Artlink via paid dues or a member gallery, then you as an artist can go pound sand. The second being that this “mutual vision of connecting artists, businesses and the public ” comes with a vaguely and as yet undetermined time limit and availability.

Can anyone at Artlink please explain why they think this will help us in the long run past a few immediate sales, and some exceedingly limited exposure? When one takes into account the marketing demographic, the overpriced range of these hipster quarters, and the (presumably short) time-frame of the “rebate” that Baron is offering, can anyone accurately predict a boost past the razor-thin margin we already possess?

Here’s some personal insight- for the last 23 years, my day gig has been custom framing, a trade that varies wildly depending on how the economy goes. If things are good, people buy new art to replace what no longer fits their life, and if things are bad, they tend to freshen up what they already own, as a means to add a metaphorical breath of air. I once read an industry study that claimed the average person changes their decor every 10-12 years, depending on a slew of various factors- age, financial status, and most importantly- the size of their residence.

Older (IE: retired) people tend to buy less art, as they are usually engaging in a period of downsizing and simplifying, younger people lean (as you’d expect) towards buying more, as they start out on their life-journey. Pretty much what you’d anticipate seeing overall in regards to such a study.

As someone who’s had an intimate perspective on both sides of the industry fence for the last two decades, I’d  ascribe to this theory, but propose a counter-question: what happens if you’re just making a lateral move? Unless you’re starting from scratch (highly unlikely given the rent) the odds are pretty solid that you’re already fully stocked up with all the artsy accoutrements, and at best, the thought of buying art isn’t going to be ranking high on your “to-do” list.

If one were to affix an addendum to my query, how wide could the spectrum of potential patrons possibly be? Who exactly, is Baron and Artlink marketing to?

College students don’t have the cash, there’s nothing to attract families, older professionals are going to leave after having to deal with the crowds, inconvenience, and inherent aggravation of First Fridays, and when given Artlink’s restrictions in regards to participating artists and galleries, along with the vague time-frame pertaining to the rebates end, I’m fairly secure in my conviction that this latest attempt by Artlink to appear proactive can be summed up thusly as: “but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Not to mention as the virus of gentrification spreads, driving out both artists and galleries, the marketing of a rapidly disappearing art scene will require a level of ad agency creativity not seen since Frito-Lay introduced it’s “Cheeto Lip Balm” in 2005.

Seriously. It was a real product… Google it if you don’t believe me. Earlier, I noted Artlink and Baron Development’s prior collaboration, the Annual Juried Exhibition, which featured not only a 5K grand prize, but the opportunity to have ones work purchased by Baron for it’s permanent collection, which in my POV, is akin to not only getting in bed with the Devil, but taking some time out in between sessions to decorate his boudoir as well. This year’s “aren’t we amazing” back-slapping farce was staged at the Heard Museum, a venue that according to it’s website (http://heard.org/) is:

Dedicated to the sensitive and accurate portrayal of Native arts and cultures, the Heard is an institution that successfully combines the stories of American Indian people from a personal perspective with the beauty of art.”

And while the Heard’s staff performs their chartered duty within this description flawlessly, it has as much to do with the PAS as Donald Trump has to do with the modern feminist movement. Speaking as such an outsider, the Phoenix Art Museum would be a more logical choice in regards to hosting Artlink’s showcase, but that’s just my opinion. Sure, common sense agrees with me 100%, but let’s face it- he’s been getting the stuffing pounded out of him during this election cycle, so that just might be the concussions talking.

Or the Kit-Kats. He’s got some serious chocolate addiction issues.

By way of disclaimer, I boycotted this year’s event out of principle, as I felt it would be exceedingly hypocritical to associate with people whom I’ve spent a good part of my energy opposing as of late, even if it’s only to socialize on the most superficial level, the word “superficial” being the truly relevant and I might add, pertinent description here. Various sources have alleged that the three hour extravaganza showcased nothing truly save the multiple ways that certain not-to-be-named members of Artlink’s board could lick the boots of Baron Development.

However, as I’ve already stated, I wasn’t there to directly observe, and I have heard numerous renditions of the evenings events, so take these rumors as you would any that fell into your lap. If I really wanted to split hairs , I could also call attention to the Chinese whispers that the show had to be broken down immediately after it ended, which from an artists’ POV, is not only a huge pain in the ass, but in principle (and I might add, class) more akin to an event held at a VFW hall.

Possibly even more troubling to this collaborative effort, was the angle that Lynn Trimble noted in her PNT article, that being: “Instead of being inspired to create cutting-edge works, it seems that most of the selected artists played it safe, which isn’t necessarily surprising. If you’re submitting a work of art to a panel, it’s because you want it to be chosen. Of course, there’s no shame in artists wanting to be paid for their work. But it’s hard to decipher how financial opportunity might — or might not — dampen creative impulses.”

Now since I didn’t attend the show, I’m not going to say anything decisive about the art itself, nor will I criticize any of the artists who were vying for what was a pretty good chunk of money at the time, as it would be exceedingly hypocritical of me to do so- I’ve taken plenty of money from demagogues in order to pay my rent, and I’ve never felt sorry for doing it. I’ve always believed that if it ever turned out to be a massive amount of cash, I’d have enough left over to buy self-esteem therapy, and a whole new slew of better-looking friends.

Now, while I’ll give the Artists a hall-pass of sorts regarding their contributive efforts to the Juried Exhibition, simply dismissing the actions of Artlink to the same as an uncomplicated example of “the end justifies the means” feels particularly uneasy, especially where the metaphorical greased weasel tango with Baron is to be noted. Simply put, Baron is a concern whose possibly corrosive influence could theoretically lead to the destruction of the vitally collaborative scene that Artlink believes it speaks for as a whole.

But the nagging question remains: how do you benefit an Art scene by allying with the architects of it’s potential destruction? With each new development, rents rise, more speculators pour in, even more sell their lots to the vultures, and in the end, the artists will leave, replaced by corporate insipidness. Is it wrong to ask the follow-up question that if one can’t afford to live in an area, how will they afford to create work there too? This budding situation alone gave rise to the valid query I’ve been asked a lot in the last few weeks, that being: what does Artlink DO, exactly?

It may come as a shock, but I’ve never written anything previously about Artlink, which surprises most people, given my reputation for taking on what I perceive to be roadblocks to progress for the PAS, but to be fair, I’ve never considered them anything but yet another group of overly passionate 602 cheerleaders- not that there’s anything wrong with that. Other than attending a few meetings out of curiosity, or knowing a few people on the board over the years, my interaction with them as an entity has been somewhat intermittent at best, and until now, they’ve basically remained under my radar.

But if I were to speak frankly, they’ve never struck me as an organization that’s got it’s act entirely together- a pessimistic judgment which varies depending on who’s serving on the board at that particular moment, and one that’s kept me from getting more involved, to be brutally honest. And to roughly paraphrase Groucho Marx, I generally wouldn’t trust any group that might begrudgingly have me as a member, given my proclivity for rubbing people the wrong way with minimal effort.

The organization since it’s inception has always been an all-volunteer affair, and the devotion for the cause that being a board-member requires is stunning, as one former President recently confided to me: “it’s essentially another job, 45- 60 hours a week as a rule, and it gets to be exhausting after a while“.  Such involvement requires both ardor and fortitude, which as an Artist, I not only “get”, I also honestly respect. Art warrior is a hard road to slog, and in no way would I slander the people who pick up the palette and run with it.

But having dispensed with that sincere piece of praise, I’m also prone to being a cynic of vast and highly acidic proportion, and I’m painfully aware that particular tidbit doesn’t come as a shock to anyone. I’ve been in the PAS since 1991, and while Roosevelt was named a while back as one of the “Top Ten Arts Districts in the US”, our art “scene” is still only open essentially two nights a month, unlike many of our contemporaries. For the sake of our collective sanity, I’m not going to go too

in-depth on this particular tangent, due to my covering it almost endlessly over the last six years, but shouldn’t we be much more established and financially secure by now after so many years of work, whether that’s through individual acts or the backing of a dedicated arts organization?

Granted, Artlink is responsible for the yearly showcase of Art Detour, along with it’s newer and so far, occasionally uneven stepsister, the Artists Ball, which infamously one year, lacked both actual art or attendees which had anything to do with the art scene. To quote a colleague who was chatting with me and my companion at the time: “Between you, me and her, there’s over 45 years of scene knowledge standing here… do you recognize anybody?”

While my answer was a steely “um, nope“, it was a salve of sorts to know that if a bomb had been dropped on the happening that year, it would have rid the greater Southwest of worthless hipsters and a large demographic of AXE body-spray users. A 50/50 deal in regards to winning and losing, I would gleefully surmise. This kids, is not the sign of an organization that’s gonna be bringing home a lot of trophies, if you catch my drift- just something for all of you to chew on, and for me to expect voluminous hate mail regarding.

In fact, due to the cozying up with Baron Properties, Wayne Rainey resigned from the organization after attending this years event at the Heard, which in my humble opinion, was a pure “art gangsta” mic drop, considering he’s been involved with them for almost as long as he’s owned MonOrchid.

See, I’m all about the end game, and so far, all relevant data points to the fact that we’re about to get screwed like Ned Beatty in Deliverance by an entity that currently treats our artistic community as if we’re their Thursday Girl, for the cynical grace of a few measly and wholly condescending crumbs.

Artists aren’t curiosities in a side show to be paraded out so certain people can pat themselves on the back for “supporting culture”- they’re the entire reason these carpet bagging slugs came here from cities where snarky pretension is almost an Olympic sport, and they shouldn’t be allowed to destroy what’s been built just because we’re having some minor codependency issues.

And while I may not know much, I do know that Artlink has done itself no favors as of late, given the litmus test of this years intimate conversations at Chaos Theory. My takeaway was that a fairly large portion of the PAS wants somebody’s head on a pike [metaphorically, of course] for reasons that are both valid and counterfeit. The legitimate issues I’m currently dissecting, with yet one more to be thrown into this mix of snarkiness, and the bogus… well, If I was hard-pressed to be somewhat diplomatic, I’d describe them as nothing more than a feud between ego and futility.

Long story short: haters gonna hate, no matter if it’s justified or not.

I myself have been guilty of this attitude, as I was informed not too long ago by a current Artlink board member who took valid offense to my casually labeling the board as “a bunch of suits”, a flippant comment I did have the luxury of defending via a rather directed [yet pleasant] dialogue regarding the same. In retrospect, I should have been more clear on the topic of the board’s makeup, since as of now, out of 11 members, only two are Creatives. I’d have been better served if I had stated my belief that I think Artlink should be akin to an artsy version of the supreme court- half should be artists, half should be business professionals, and there should be a lone additional member who’s a quasi-mix of the two, who sets the last word in contracted debates.

While that chat went well, one of Artlink’s long-standing weaknesses is it’s inability to attract artists to serve as board members, a state of discordance fueled by the vast sense of suspicion it retains among a certain percentage of the artistic community. I’ve always been prone to dismissively ascribe this judgment to petty ax-grinding at best, but the explanation as to why this perception holds may be far more simple. In regards to some of these cases, complaints range from lack of communication to the more disturbingly insidious issue of being outright ignored in relation to marketing and promotional opportunities, such as being left off of maps and trolley stops.

Such a viewpoint hails from a downtown Phoenix gallery owner who asked for anonymity due to business and social concerns: “I think the lack of consistency with Artlink is an issue. Changing detour dates, w/ trolley routes that do not visit “paid” articipant stops, and visiting destinations that have had no galleries or studios – devastated businesses showing local art at detour. It’s not geared toward galleries or who is showing or the caliber of art…it’s who you are friends with. So if you don’t play in the same playgrounds- oh well. As to what Artlink has done for my business – they run the trolley on first Friday…That’s it.

Pug – the urban guide isn’t the most user friendly…and does anyone see it? Their marketing efforts are pretty much non existent that I can see. Dots on the street? Really? How do we get people to the dots? No one has EVER called to ask how they can improve or help my business. Never.

And I can’t always go sit at those meetings to hear what “they” are doing – with no inquiry as to what they should be doing…”

In addition to the above take on things, there’s this summary from yet another disaffected gallery owner who also wishes to remain anonymous*, due to the fear of professional reprisal:
*[See, there’s that “trust” thing I mentioned earlier.]

Anon: I think my issues are the same as yours. The whole art detour flop, failure, etc. but please don’t drop my name on anything. I want to be a silent witness to these atrocities to the Phoenix arts community.

AB: Well, i can use you as an anonymous source- without people giving me their issues, its just me going at them alone, and this time i need specifics and shadow allies.

Anon: “Anonymous is good. Great in fact. Ok. Most of this crap is Katrina, as you already know. She used Artlink as a platform for that stupid park thing [the Artists Ball] and then had the Gala there. I was called a month before Art Detour and asked to sign up and pay for my share of promotional materials.

However, all of the Art Detour stuff like flyers, posters, postcards, etc, should have been done 2 to 3 months before Detour, not one month before. So, at that time, I did not give any money to Artlink- however, a couple of weeks later [two weeks before Detour to be exact] I did cave in, gave them the money and there was still no flyers, no posters, no signage. No anything.

So the MORNING of Detour, we get signage, not even posters- we get signage and I think it was some maps, but I personally got nothing at all, which is fine because who the hell cares at that point, right? Personally, I think Katrina doesn’t really care about the arts in Phoenix at all- she has really nothing to do with Art, she doesn’t walk around during the First Friday events, and for my part, I’ve never seen her out looking at art.*
*[In Katrina’s defense, I have seen her at shows, but her range of effectiveness appears limited- AB]

I just don’t really understand why Katrina is a part of Artlink she just doesn’t seem to have it together for this kind of a non-profit, and I’m not sure exactly what she does besides her downtown journal garbage and who the hell cares about that? I don’t, and I’m sure a lot of other people don’t, as it has nothing to do with art.

I believe the name of Artlink is the only thing she really has to stand behind. I think you’re doing a great thing, and that Artlink not only needs to be reconfigured, it needs to have a new president- somebody who actually cares not only about the art in Phoenix, but the artists as well. They need the support that they thought they were actually getting from Artlink.

But in my opinion, Artlink does nothing for the artists themselves.”

Given the experiences above, a reliable bridge of discourse that exists between the PAS and Artlink seems to be non-existent, which may be why there’s an “Artist Mixer” coming up this week at The Grand on Central, or it may be just another form of damage control, as the skeptic in me dryly suggests, since I can’t recall them ever hosting one before. Personally, I’m hoping that it is indeed an outreach towards the greater good, but like most dubious tales that are put forth, both time and it’s lasting effect will tell in the end.

Hoping for some transparency, I reached out to Catrina Kahler, Artlink’s current president. Granted, it was right after I had posted on FaceBook that I was “going after” Artlink, so with hindsight, some skittishness was to be expected, but I was also reasonably convinced that my penchant for being skin-shreddingly honest would help soothe any concerns be they real or imagined.

Remind me when all of this is over to fire my Sense of Optimism… he’s really not pulling his weight.

Some background on Mrs. Kahler: she’s the publisher of the Downtown Phoenix Journal, Host of RadiatePHX, and owner of Urban Affair, a marketing and media company, and has served on the Artlink board since December 2011. She’s also allegedly managed to make Artlink financially solvent, which just supports my theory that voodoo actually does work, provided you sacrifice enough art-students.

Or hipsters… I’m not really sure how it works.

But enough with the metaphysical aspects of art advocacy, let’s get right down to the brass tacks, those being some personal observations from past [and I might add, current] Artlink board members in reference to her management style. Catrina, it has been said, tends to play her cards close to her vest, which sometimes has lead to a tangible sense of inter-personal annoyance among her colleagues. The word “OCD” came up more than once, followed very closely by the grumble that she’s perceived to be the whole of Artlink itself, as a generalization.

As one past member confided: “It’s not that I have an Ego, but it would be nice to be publically recognized for what I’ve done, every now and then, especially when there’s an issue within the community- *why the f*** don’t those people ever come to the board itself?”
*[See: “lack of trust”, see: “ax to grind”, see: “everybody goes to the big cheese.”]

So, with all that in mind, I present for your perusal the email correspondence.
———————————————————————————–
AB: “Catrina- I’m working on the new piece now, if you’d like to have a statement to be added into it (non edited of course) it would be great if you could get it to me ASAP.

I’m mainly interested in the recent association with Baron, especially given their problems settling into their community as well as understanding their long-term plans with artlink in regards to promoting the Arts.

If youd rather do a face to face, my evenings are open, but right now my email is literally blowing up over this to the tune of 100+ messages, so id like to hear from the source itself, rather than others whose opinions might, (to be diplomatic) somewhat biased.

Let me know at your convenience of course, and i wish you a good night.

Best regards, WMR”
———————————————————————–
Catrina Kahler: “Hi Wayne, Thanks for the offer but the board already shared a statement about the Juried Exhibition and the relationship with Baron. It’s posted here: https://artlinkphoenix.com/a-statement-on-the-juried-exhibition/

Best, Catrina”
————————————————————————-
AB: “Catrina- I’m sorry to hear that, as the official statement reads like a deflection of the actual issue at hand, but thats for the readers and the community to decide, I guess.

On a more personal note and as a member of the arts scene since 1991, I find Artlinks decision to ally themselves with a group undermining us both saddening and ethically disapointing.

But even more sorrowful… not unexpected.

Thank you for your courteous and prompt reply, and in closing, I offer this heartfelt observation:

I hope you know whom you’ve decided to do business with, because if you dont, they’ll show their true selves when Artlink no longer serves their purpose- and I, the eternal skinflint, am willing to put my money that’ll be sooner than later.

Best of luck in future endeavors, 
Wayne Michael Reich”
———————————————————-
Catrina Kahler: “Wayne, do you mind if I ask you something? Personally and sincerely, I have to ask, why are you choosing to act so forcefully?

I respect your history and intelligence. I’m trying to understand why you feel the need to be strongly opinionated about something that you know is extremely challenging and complicated.

Can you imagine for a moment that there are good intentions involved in the here and now? And there are at least some good fruits as a result of this work?”
————————————————————
AB: ” Catrina- Because I’ve seen first hand what these people are doing, and I see the end game. When the walls are full, and the permanent collection is full, and the building is done and finished, what need or use do they have for us?

They will build, and they will leave. And like an ex-boyfriend, they’re not going to help us in the future. What’s left behind will be an area where artists can’t afford to live, work, or maintain a gallery space. In other words- no cohesive community, no artists, no scene, no center of culture.

The interaction with MonOrchid is a perfect example of how they view us and the community. Referring to us as notorious, white feeding off of what has been built here by people who actually give a damn. And as an aside, where do you think the artists are going to go?

The warehouse district is being decimated by developers, and there are very few pockets left where artists can afford to take root and grow out. The scene is already fractured enough and not under any kind of umbrella of leadership- we’re open two nights a month, that doesn’t really strike me as a successfully built or well maintained artistic juggernaut.

I said it before, and I will say it again- these people are not our friends, and they don’t have our best interest at heart in any way, shape, or form. They’re looking out for their pocket book, and all we are is a marketing / PR opportunity  to them.

One example: A fellow artist had taken it upon himself a few weeks ago to show one of the people from the circles development first Friday and the artistic Community. He blurted out to me that he had no idea that this was even here, and that it was quote unquote an interesting facet of our city. But he expressed no interest in becoming one with it, or supporting it.

These developers are looking at the bottom line, they don’t give a rat’s ass about our cafes / art galleries / restaurants / Arts scene. They see a marketing opportunity and that is it. When they are done sucking us dry, they will go back to Colorado or move on to the next city like a gaggle of locusts.

Artlink will come to regret this decision, mark my words, and if I wasn’t 100% sure of that, I wouldn’t be doing the piece that I’m currently writing now. As a means of clarification, I would strongly suggest you sit down with Wayne Rainey and have a chat about what they’ve been doing.

I think he’d be more than willing to share with you his personal first-hand experiences.

Respectfully, WMR ”
—————————————————————————
Catrina Kahler: “Wayne, thanks for sharing this thoughtful reply. I’m giving it some serious thought of my own. Our respective causes may be more aligned than we think. I’m on my phone which makes for crappy replies. I would like to follow up with you later if you don’t mind. I realize you’re on a deadline but this is personal so I don’t expect it to play a role in your timeline.

Best, Catrina”
———————————————————————————
AB: : “I’m down for a meet up if you’re interested, timelines can be pushed back, you know.

Hoping to drop the piece by the end of this week.  WMR”
—————————————————————————–
Catrina Kahler: “ Hi Wayne, I apologize for this delay, especially after I told you I would follow up yesterday afternoon. My schedule got jammed up and I’m just coming up for air. It sounds like we’re kind of on two paths here. I’m talking with you from a personal perspective, and then hearing you’re posting on Facebook that you’re gearing up to go after Artlink. I don’t remember the quotes people are observing but it sounds kind of…bad.

I believe you’re coming from a place of real concern. But it’s probably not a smart idea for me to meet with you as I would want to have an open and honest discussion.

I believe we would even find points of agreement. In fact, based on your email below, I know we would. But I realize I don’t know you well enough to know whether or not I could trust opening up to you without that conversation becoming fodder for your blog…as it gears up to go after Artlink, an organization I care a lot about.*
*
[A small personal note? While these screeds are ultimately my responsibility, they aren’t a true solo effort- scores of people within the community offer up story ideas, and more to the point, they give me the inside track that fuel my literary efforts. That particular relationship is based solely on trust. If you tend to throw people under the bus, they’ll eventually refuse to hang out with you at the local bus-stop, you know. Self-preservation and all that. So not too surprisingly, I tend to find the above assumption to be particularly insulting.]

The Artlink board works very hard on behalf of artists. I know this to be a fact. I’ve literally had to suspend investing my time on my own work so that the organization gets the support it needs, much like other members of the arts community have had to do from time to time, as they work on their work/projects/organizations. So it’s been challenging for me and others to hear so many things being said that are just not true. 

As I mentioned in an earlier email, there is a here and now element at play. No one is denying the challenges of what’s taken place to date. And if what you say is true, and they up and leave in the future, a question remains. What about the now? If they truly are fly-by-night, then let’s make sure they spend their money with artists while they’re here – and not a Pottery Barn, IKEA or some commercial design company. We are working diligently to insert arts into current conversations with the intent to benefit artists. We can’t regret trying.

Please consider coming down from that 100%? I’m sure I’m an idiot for quoting Shakespeare to someone of your intellect, but this is honestly the line that comes to mind: “There are more things in heaven and earth…Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

Thanks for listening. And for your patience with this reply.

Best, Catrina”
——————————————————————————-
AB:  “One more… This is what happens when they (developers) get a grip: “High end apartments”= unobtainable rents for artists.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1233972589958366&id=100000369103710

If you come to Chaos and see me, walk over and let me plead my case for a sit down interview. And if that gambit fails, remember im always carrying rum, so at the very least,  I can spike your drink.
WMR”
———————————————————————————-
Catrina Kahler: “Sorry thought I had replied to this… I wanted to thank you. For the offer of rum, that is. Will keep that in mind.”
Her follow up after running into me at 9 Gallery, the night of Chaos Theory:

“I’m curious about something. You took me by surprise on Friday when you said you wanted to meet for three minutes. I didn’t mean to walk away as you were saying it. We were on the clock, trying to get to Art Haus before 10p. What is the three minutes for exactly? Previously, you had said you had wanted to meet, which I took to mean a full conversation in representation of Artlink. Given the request for three minutes, it sounds like you might have something specific you wanted to share with me. I’m not looking to cut off communication with anyone so is there is something you want to share or did I misunderstand?”
———————————————————————————–
AB
: “Metaphorical three minutes- if you want to chat, I’m open.”
——————————————————————————————–
Catrina Kahler: “Ah, ok. Thank you.”
—————————————————————————————-
And with that, the flow of conversation was over, such as it was. A few days later, the “rebate” press release was issued, and here we are now… up to our necks in an allegorical and literal desert, drinking overpriced coffee as absolutely nothing financially relevant happens.

One could easily make the argument that taking Baron’s money is the smart thing to do, in that it will inspire other corporations to do the same, but with all honest cynicism, why would they? We’re a limited resource with a rapidly approaching “sell-by” date, and once they’ve built their monoliths, they’ll have no use for us, period. All the PAS represents to them is a marketing gimmick- an exploitable opportunity to be discarded when they’ve hollowed us out like a chocolate Easter bunny.

While some might think I’m being harsh regarding this partnership, I’d still uphold the position that a bad deal is a bad deal, no matter how hard the spin on the rationalization that it isn’t. Artlink has become a keen facet of this gentrification diamond, and they’re willingly naive if they believe that a long-standing stability will come of this. We’ve read the book, seen the movie, and know how the sequel turns out- these people may not be our mortal enemies, but they are definitely not our friends, and we need to stop currying their favor over curing the cancer they’ve already spread.

Granted, one bad deal does not a pattern make, but that’s the beauty of the PAS- it keeps offering up  a never-ending cornucopia of snark-bait, which when given enough time to ferment, evolves into a story worth tackling, as is the case here. I’ve already dissected one allegedly bad business deal, and I’m about to add another art-frog to the pile, that being the grey bloated carcass of consumerism gone awry, a development also known as CityScape.

I’ve written about my dislike regarding this triumph of concrete over good community before, but this time my contempt goes past simple aesthetics, and instead focuses on yet another artists as fodder collaboration backed by you know who… AGAIN. Besides… I have a collection of all new jokes about CityScape in the next part of this blog, and I don’t want to waste them, so let’s get chomping on the newest bad call.

It comes in the form of an open Artists Call, a request for public art at the aforementioned Cityscape:
[https://artlinkphoenix.com/call-to-artists-cityskate-celebrates-holidays-in-downtown/]

From the call: “Artlink and CityScape invite local artists to submit samples of previously completed work to be considered for display on a structure that is a part of CitySkate in downtown Phoenix. A panel will select the top SIX selections.

Each winner will receive a $200 prize. Their works will then be reproduced on banner material and displayed on a chiller structure (two 40’ banners, three artworks on each) within CitySkate and featured in CityScape promotions.

There is NO SUBMISSION FEE for this call. The deadline to submit is November 7, 2016.

SUBMISSION DETAILS:
A variety of contemporary street art styles are welcome for submission. Artists are encouraged to submit works that reflect a holiday theme. This can include images of generosity, gratitude, hope, celebration, or joy.

Individual artists are invited to apply to this call. Please note that by submitting to this call, artist agrees to permit Artlink and CityScape to reproduce the image of their selected work. Limited edition items may be sold for a limited time (selected artists will be notified of details).”

Now, let’s have a quiz- what exactly are the problems within this open call?
Go ahead… I’ll give you thirty seconds.
[Hums “Jeopardy” Theme…]

Did you guess it? Ok, some of you did, some of you didn’t, and that’s fine. For those who didn’t, let me use my freshly sharpened claws to help turn this art-speak pot roast into a finely shredded and exceedingly yummy snarkchanga- it’s like a chimichanga, but with a fairly tart pickle sauce in place of the red. Trust me, it’s delicious.

The first issue: the amount of the so-called “prize”- 200 bucks. A pittance, given this small, yet critical factoid: the developer of CityScape is also the driving force behind the new high-rise residential and commercial project in downtown Phoenix that will include a Frys grocery store. While the potential jokes that should be made regarding merging living quarters and a place where one buys Diet Coke are laid out like a banquet table, I’ll pass up the chance… for now.

What’s truly interesting about this faux benefactor of the arts is this: recently, the Phoenix City Council approved $18.3 million in incentives to the project, overseen by a company known as Red Development. Let this sink in for a moment- an 18.3 MILLION benefit, and they’re going to throw in $1200.00 split six ways as a “prize”? How noble of them, the cash-strapped babies. Part of me wants to give them a bowl of soup, and the remainder wants to dump it over their custom-made suits.

I spend way more than that in monthly art supplies, so this insolent trifle cuts zero ice with me, and I might add, any Artist who knows anything about the true cost of producing work.

The second matter is one that I actually find more troubling, as it concerns the most valuable thing an artist owns: the rights to reproduce their labors. Once again, from the call: “Please note that by submitting to this call, artist agrees to permit Artlink and CityScape to reproduce the image of their selected work. Limited edition items may be sold for a limited time (selected artists will be notified of details).”

From an outside impression, it appears that submitted works are open to being published just as well as the chosen winners, which I’ll conclude is just a case of literary confusion. While there is mention of selected artists being notified of the “details”, there’s no publically posted guidelines regarding as to how the proceeds will be dispersed among the artists from sales of the limited editions, if at all, and I find that odd.

Seriously… if you’re going to split profits, shouldn’t that minutiae be right up front?

But what truly strikes strange is the fact that Artlink apparently sees nothing wrong with backing what is essentially yet another situation of a gentrifying corporation exploiting artists. They’ll be using the artists efforts widely in their advertising without paying the standard fee for doing so, and I’ll bet you a warehouse full of eggnog-flavored Ding Dongs that the phrase “it’s good exposure” will be tossed at the artists like heads at a zombie skee-ball contest… which, boys and girls, is pure and unadulterated bulls**t of the highest caliber.

And yes, I said it. Egg-nog-flavored Ding Dongs. An Artbitch can dream. Even in Trumps America.

I don’t know who vetted this arrangement as a good thing, but they obviously weren’t an artist, and they clearly weren’t skilled at business, if this deal struck them as fair, professional, and dare I say it, an opportunity to show off our best and brightest. No truly serious career-minded artist is going to scrape for 200 bucks when other art centers actually try to get the best deal for their talent.

But wait… was that a scream through the pixilated world I just heard? A blood-curdling harpy-shriek of rage in regards to my seemingly offering no solutions?

C’mon… have I ever let you down in telling you what needs to be done? No. And I’m not going to start now. First off, I think that Artlink needs to do a few [in my pov] simple tweaks to it’s internal structure, and I’ll rattle them off as they hit me.

To start, there is a definitive need to facilitate a stable source of funding so that the organization can have a full time, five days a week, dedicated staff and more importantly- an actual physicality within the PAS, one that reaches out to other markets and artists. Since Artlink seems to be cozying up to developers with deep pockets, maybe they should use that familiarity to load up their reserves and use it to solidify our artistic presence outside the muddled sprawl that constitutes our scene.

Now, I do realize that in order for them to be able to open up the gates as it were, the issue of financing all of these endeavors will have to be settled long before any action can take place, but it’s also very critical that Artlink needs to embrace and promote all the artists, not just the ones who pay to play as a way to hang out with the cool kids clique. That means everyone gets on the map, the trolley stops at as many venues as it can, and in the end, one and all get to share a piece of the hopefully profitable art-cake.

But if I had to focus on one exceptionally vital issue that I see as the biggest millstone around Artlink’s neck, it would be it’s alleged reputation among the PAS, and that needs to be addressed ASAP, because until it is, there’s always going to be an acidic buffer zone that impedes progress.

True advocacy isn’t limited. Everybody gets to have a voice, not just your friends. And you don’t throw your fellow colleagues under the bus, based on the hope that this time, the metaphorical pretty girl will finally notice you. Many paved the ground, countless others laid the bricks, and scores more poured their blood, sweat, tears, and bank accounts into building something that is worth fighting for, versus selling it out to those who see it as a marketing gimmick or as a chance to finally dust off that brand new PR department they’ve had on the shelf for far too long.

Maybe the mixer will be that first step towards achieving that goal, or maybe it’s just yet another opportunity to pat ourselves on the back for doing a job we’ve never really started, nor will see through to the end, like we’ve been oft to do in the past.

But what do I know? I’m just an artist. That used to count for something…
Especially to those who claimed to respect us.

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”- Maya Angelou

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


 

Gentrification Preferes Blands, Pt.1.(The Baer Truth.)

“Misquotations are the only quotations that are never misquoted.”- Hesketh Pearson

Hello Blogiteers!

I find myself in a conundrum of sorts these days, and it’s quite frustrating.

Things appear to be going well on the whole, and that kind of stuff tends to throw a flaming curveball in regards to my snarkitude, if you know what I mean. Sure, I like it when things are all happy and sparkly, but it’s definitely a hindrance when it comes to writing one of my saturnly venomous screeds. Nobody wants a fluffy piece from me, they want that skin-stripping kindness I’ve become infamous for, and that requires idiots to feed the machine.

Granted, it sometimes seems that the PAS provides a never-ending stream of them, ranging from Amy Silverman to Peter Bugg, but you can only hit that cache so many times before you get sick and tired of playing with the same chew-toy.  And in the case of my perennial favorite artsy punching-bag, the aforementioned Mr. Bugg, it seems that the SMOCA grant money he was awarded for his note by note *rip-off of another artists work was seemingly never utilized to bring said copied art project to completion.  *[allegedly] 

According to Sara Cochran, [then SMoCA interim director and curator] Peter was later hired on the strength of the following: “He presented an impressive number of original and exciting ideas for connecting with SMoCA’s loyal audience and reaching out to build new audiences who may not yet know that they need contemporary art in their lives.” Re-reading this puff-piece quote with my stereotypical cynicism, I find this particular tidbit hilarious.

Not only does he have said alleged reputation for blatant plagiarism, his knack for dropping the ball is so well known that its rumored he’s in the running to be the next quarterback for the Patriots, as evidenced by his inability to bring it to fruition. Maybe the next time he [allegedly] copies somebody else’s project, he’ll hopefully replicate their work ethic as well.

A truly ethical professional can dream, I guess…

Speaking of the exact opposite of a true professional, [at least when it comes to dealing with her readers and insubordinates, anyway] it seems that somehow I managed to slip around Amy Silverman’s all-seeing Eye of Sauron and get my name in the ol’ Phoenix New Times* despite my previous assertions that they’re still the Pennysaver with Porn at best.
*[Link: http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/music/heres-what-its-like-to-write-an-album-in-a-month-8215956]

Seriously, pick one up and count the number of ads versus actual content, and you’ll understand why they remind me of a coffeehouse newsletter. The most recent one I condescended to view happened to be 1/3rd as thick as it was just a few years ago, and it’s painfully obvious that their ongoing demographic really has a thing for strip clubs, car stereos, and shoddily written articles from ASU’s outgoing Walter Cronkite School of Journalism’s “not quite there yet” class.

It does strike as amazing however, that she’s managed to keep that rag on the merest of life support, so I will give her that, but your strongest skill set as an editor shouldn’t be where the art of dark necromancy comes into play. Your job is to shape the written word, not go do body shots with Anubis, even if you do share similar views on fashion and makeup tips. Just saying.

Gah. No need to pontificate any longer in regards to Editorzilla and the twits whom she pettily lords over, or the hipster impotence of SMOCA’s human Xerox. When a plane crash is imminent, the best thing to do is cover your head, clear your karma, and brace yourself for the inevitable. This Artbitch desperately needs some new scratching posts, and that right quick.

Speaking of which, and to nobody’s surprise, my complaint against my former doctor was dismissed by BOMEX with no explanation. Sure, I did get a nice form letter signed by their head shill regarding their “decision” but as to why that asinine decision was made, I’m still out in the cold. Apparently, asking why there should there be an answer given (from an agency who claims to protect the public) is the new rude. After all, I’m only the one whose life and job were horrendously affected, and it’s not like their mission isn’t to protect the doctors who sign their paychecks, a fact made evident when you look at how they handle things. As I’ve oft noted before, it’s never a good idea to let a skulk of hungry foxes guard the henhouse, unless your ongoing craft project has an immediate need for slightly sticky feathers and bones.

You may remember that initially, I praised BOMEX investigator Leah Rossow’s dedication to her job, but it seems that my sense of optimism at finding a competent worker within their gargantuan bureaucracy devoted to whitewashing the truth was both baseless and premature, given the eventual outcome, which as I noted- was unsurprising.

I guess the old saying is true after all: everybody has a price, and in Mrs. Russow’s case, it seems hers allegedly comes in the form of a low-wage paycheck. To be clear, this isn’t a case of the stereotypical “he said / she said”- all the salient and unprincipled behavior that my doctor displayed was well documented, and yet… she was given a hall pass to eventually go maim or possibly kill someone with her obvious incompetence*. *[Allegedly]

But as I stated in my last screed, I really am done with this. I’ve publically said my piece, stated my case, and moved on. However, it’s also true that I rarely leave monuments of ineptitude standing without taking one last parting salvo, which in this case- was an email directed at Mrs. Russow and her apparent acceptance of ignoring the obvious.

To quote myself:
———————————————————————————————–
“Thanks for proving my point that BOMEX is bought and paid for. I guess hurting your patients is perfectly fine when you know that the so called regulators are in your pocket.

BTW, the blog posts, where you’re mentioned has over 5k hits, and I’ve answered over 200 emails regarding my case.

Not surprisingly, they all agree that Dr. Paar should be held accountable, but when the people you’re supposed to investigate pay you, objectivity is questionable at best.

Go read the blogs, as they are hilarious:
http://waynemichaelreich.blogspot.co

Ironically,  I actually wrote nice things in regards to your dedication, but I guess I’ll have to alter that in a future piece, as you’ve shown where your loyalties lie- protecting the doctors, insidious actions be damned.

There is one query I do have though that only you can answer, and that is this: How much did it take for you to be bought off?

And how do you sleep knowing that you put patients at risk? You, and the agency that puts profit over patients can go to Hell, which is ironic, since you’ve helped so many victims remain there.

Morally bankrupt. Devoid of ethics. And lining your pockets on a base of suffering, 

 May you live in interesting times,
Wayne Michael Reich”
—————————————————————————–
Personally, I think I come off as rather warm and fuzzy. Much like one of those noxious caterpillars you used to see on the so-called “Learning Channel” before every show started using “Boss” in it’s title, regardless whether the content was about cakes, white trash, or mermaids. And don’t even get me started on those homophobic twits from “Duck Dynasty” or the horrendous stage moms from “Toddlers and Tiaras”- we’ll be here for days. Days, I tell you.

So what’s a slowly evening-out Artbitch to do? Well, if you’re me, you talk to people like I’m known to do incessantly, and you pay attention to the stuff that filters through the world of the Internet. It’s sort of analogous to being a spider in the middle of a web, waiting on it’s next meal.

Normally, that’s how it usually goes, but unfortunately. this time around there were a few spanners thrown in the ol’ works, and they were huge ones. First: mainly due to my neuropathy, I was dismissed from my new job, [btw, I would have made the same decision if I were in their place] then I got sick. Really sick. Take nausea, fold in flu-like symptoms, intersperse in a highly-puzzling series of head rushes and waves of exhaustion that literally are bringing me to my knees.

Top off by adding in the usual depression that goes with being unemployed, and what you’ll have is quite possibly the worst cookies ever, no matter how many chocolate chips you’ve supplemented to the mix. So given all that, it’s not too surprising I’ve been way behind the 8 ball lately in regards to what’s been going on in the PAS- after all. it’s kind of difficult to run with the herd when you’re unable to get off the couch without cursing whatever God you’re presently blaming your issues on.

Stupid Krom. And after all those nice things I’ve said about you to Conan? That just hurts, bro.

Blasphemy aside, it’s been exhausting trying to respond to all that’s been happening in (and to) my life the last couple of weeks, so you’ll have to forgive me for trying to circumvent some of the crush, as quite honestly- a lot of it is either beyond my influence or my experience. And since I’ve managed to land a new job recently despite my ongoing health issues, my free time has been somewhat crunched.

So, what’s up?

There’s a massive brouhaha involving a proposed BID District currently in downtown, and the most recent debacle concerned a seditious comment by RoRo landowner Erick Baer where he allegedly called the artistic community “parasites”- two items that you’d think would provide adequate grist for the Artbitch to mill into delightfully acidic snarkbread, but surprisingly this time around, I’m going to defer to the people already on the field of battle, and I’ll endeavor to keep my rationalization short.

In the case of the BID issue, quite simply put- I’m a novice when it comes to the arena of local politics, the structuring of such initiatives, and what the required process is in order to create one, so any input I have would essentially boil down to a word-bite at best, personal embarrassment at worst. Besides, Jon Talton [http://roguecolumnist.typepad.com/] is way better at this kind of thing than I am, so my normally ravenous ego has no issue getting out of the way to let my betters do what they do best with effortless grace.

Addressing the next issue, the alleged comment by Erick Baer, the situation gets a tad bit murkier, depending on who you talk to. Some claim his remark was taken out of context, others claim it runs exactly as it reads. So which is it, exactly?

Well, lets add some framework to my take on what’s going on and start with the basics: Mr. Baer owns the following properties within the RoRo- a single family residence rental property at 809 N. 6th St., and a vacant lot at 815 N. 6th St.. The most truthful assessment I could apply to Baer is that he falls within the parameters of a “long-term community investor”- that is someone who goes into a area, buys a property to renovate. and then sells it far down the road when the market conditions are favorable, basically betting on a win from what others would consider a loss- all perfectly ethical and reasonable, depending on your modus operandi and inherent objective.

As stated in an article via the *Phoenix New Times, Baer made his assertion to the Arizona Senate Finance Committee in regards to the proposed (and eventually defeated) Roosevelt Row BID application. To quote from the article: “Roosevelt Row property owner Erick Baer submitted a public comment to the Senate Finance Committee describing Roosevelt Row artists as “parasites that think everything is free.””  {http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/arts/arizona-governor-doug-ducey-signs-law-killing-the-roosevelt-business-improvement-district-8134294]

To be quite honest, when I first heard that, my blood instantly boiled, and a plan for getting him to willingly get inside my 1974 Ford van/mobile abattoir began to gel. My first thought was to tell him there’s an artist squatting on his vacant lot, say I’d be more than happy to drive him there, and watch the fun ensue when I *bust out my spattering smock and freshly sharpened matching chainsaw with it’s super-convenient insulated drink cozy.
*[A simple joke. A cup cozy on a chainsaw would be highly impractical.]

But this is the new and improved Artbitch, V2.5, and these days, I’m trying ever so hard to not go off half-cocked. Besides… have you priced quicklime lately? It’s almost high enough to make a man reconsider his hobby of killing clown hookers on the weekend.

Almost. A mans gotta have his down time, you know.

So, my first step was to draft an open letter, but due to a miscommunication on my part, I wound up sending it to the wrong people, which they addressed almost immediately- curtly, I might add. Oops.
————————————————————————————————————
“Hi there!
This message is for Erik Baer: I write a *blog dedicated to the Phoenix Art Scene, and as such, am currently in the midst of a piece regarding the merging of both the business and artistic development going on downtown.
*(http://WayneMichaelReich.Blogspot.com/)

Recently, you referred to the art community as “parasites”, a statement that for obvious reasons, has offended a wide swath of people. Now, while its well-established that I’m pro-art scene, I’m also known for being pro-accuracy when it comes to getting the details right. 

So to that end, I’d like to offer you the chance to either clarify or expand on your pov, and the best way to do that is to get it from the source, not the internet or offended masses, who to be fair- may not be willing to provide the balanced overlook this subject demands.

(Disclaimer: I’m harsh, but I don’t selectively edit, I don’t misquote to score points, and your response, whatever it may be, will go straight from your mouth to my pixelated page as is.)

Now, I am aware that you may not be interested or comfortable in broaching this topic, but at the moment, I’ve received over 100 emails regarding your comment, and just recently had a very animated lunch with several key players in the scene asking me to write something in response.

While this subject does intrigue me on several levels, I’d rather have all sides represented before I start crafting, for as I said, Im all about getting it right.

If the concept of telling your side interests you, please feel free to peruse past blogs at the web address above, or please read the published magazine articles at my personal site: https://waynemichaelreich.com
(Just click on the “Media” link, and follow the path.)

In closing, I thank you for your time and hopeful future consideration.

Sincerely,
Wayne Michael Reich
——————————————————————————————————————–
The response? Well, I did send it to the wrong people due to the fact I sometimes have the brain of a goldfish, so naturally, I heard nothing back. But thankfully, the stars sometimes align and reward you while overlooking your past idiocy, because Karma likes to shake it up every now and then.

It just happened that a few days later, I was cruising the ol’ Facebook and literally “bumped” into him on a thread regarding Donald’s Trumps gaggle of gold-digger wives- I know, I know, who cares about immigrants doing yet another job Americans won’t do, but it did allow the possibility of he and I getting together for a polite conversation.

After posting my main email address, I waited for a follow-up, and got…. nothing. No big woop, life is busy, people have other issues to deal with, and it’s not like I exert a great deal of influence within the grand scheme of things, so why would someone who seemed rather vehement towards the PAS and it’s Creatives be open to talking to me anyway? Looking at it from another perspective, I can understand perfectly well why some people wouldn’t want to have coffee with me, as for some in the scene, it would be like sitting down with Lucifer himself- especially if I’ve already written about you.

And I’m also certain that “Googling” me probably doesn’t show me in the best light, either.

Let’s face it, while I’m no Walter Winchell, I’m hardly a Gretchen Carlson either- I do possess some chops, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this, now would you? So trying to be as tactful as possible, I sent another query via Facebook, and hoped for the best, which never came. These are the days where you seriously just want to gorge on ice cream in your pajamas while watching Milla Jovovich kill zombies, because it’s fairly obvious nobody thinks you’re pretty anymore.

So, since [at that time] I couldn’t get my info directly from the source, playing devil’s advocate to surmise what he meant seemed to be the only logical way to go.

The truth is that if wasn’t for the artists powerfully transforming RoRo into the creative center it’s poised to become, some of these carpet-bagging profiteers from Portland wouldn’t be here in the first place, a fact that’s being willfully overlooked by the developers and others of their ilk, such as their PR guys. It’s ironically insulting that they love the art scene enough to use it as a marketing point, and as a milking station for selling themselves as being community-based, but they don’t see the slur in snidely deriding what was built long before their collective arrogance arrived, which is quite simply infuriating.

I have no issue with someone who’s playing the market, hoping their land purchase/white elephant will eventually payoff, or anyone wanting to develop a specific area, but when that decision is intertwined with disrespect for the people who are partially responsible for their good fortune, it raises my hackles something fierce. Without the Artists, there IS NO ART SCENE, period. And treating the most vital part of the machine as either unnecessary or as sponging is sheer conceit, at best and worst.

The majority of the non-local developers and speculators hoping for a big payday and nothing else, are in essence, the lowest form of cultural vulture, feeding off, as well as on, the hard work of the artists they scorn.

None of the Creatives I know are artsy free-loading bedbugs, they’re passionate people who bust their asses at a level that demands respect, no matter what the imported from Portland leeches think. In my humble opinion, anyone casually deriding the entire creative community when they’re currently nursing off their teat like a starving calf, is in my humble pov, possessing an intellect more suited to a Trump rally, which is to say that they’re most likely hovering academically somewhere just above a baked potato.

But as I said, this is the new and improved Artbitch, V2.5, and I’m trying to exude less cynicism these days, which to be quite honest- is getting damn near nigh impossible in this, the irreparably jaded era of 24/7 belittling and skepticism. However, even with that pessimistic bulwark in front of me, I’m still fairly optimistic that the good outweighs the bad in the end.

Apparently, that luminous outlook rubbed off on somebody connected to the universe’s head office, and I was sent an early *Santiago Day gift, in the form of an unexpected Facebook communiqué from the aforementioned Erick Baer, wherein he requested a chat to discuss the issue at hand.
*[Google it.]

Personally, I was hoping Baer would turn out to be someone I could really dislike- it’s been a slow summer for me after all, and this gig doesn’t really work unless I have someone to eviscerate. The most ideal situation for me is that I would have found find him *running a Ding Dong counterfeiting ring out of a hollow volcano, surrounded by underpaid dancing minions.
*[That’s a joke. Please don’t sue me, we all know that a hollow tree is where the pastries get made.]

However, when I arrived for our sit-down at The Grand on Central, that wasn’t the case- in his sixties, blunt, and incredibly energetic, Baer struck me (in my humble opinion) as a fairly straight shooter, and wasted no time explaining how the blow-up all happened. He’s also a founding member of Downtown Voices, [www.downtownvoices.org] a Phoenix-specific advocacy group.

And even worse, he admits he did say that, right off the freaking bat.

Goddamnit. Son of a yak herding inbred, I was hoping for a demagogue, and instead, got someone who didn’t duck or shy away from my rather pointed questions. With this kind of open discourse, it’s only a matter of time before I start posting recipes and life-hack tips. For instance, did you know you can use clothespins as toothbrush holde…

NONONONONO! I’m the Artbitch, and I’m gonna get ruthless here, no matter what.

Except… Baer spent quite some time explaining his frustration with the defeated BID proposal, making a strong case regarding [in his words] several “vagaries” within its structure, along with alleging that the process itself isn’t truly transparent, the notification procedure strikes as somewhat selective, and that the appeals process is deliberately complicated and bureaucratic to deter dissent.

Continuing, he echoes opinions I’ve voiced numerous times over the years: that [my take] Phoenix tries on identities like a high school girl wanting to impress people, that there’s no sense of gravitas or authenticity as presented by the new developments, and that the Arts community would benefit greatly from a true advocate in their corner, not someone who’s in “bed” with the developers.

They want Utopiahe says,but have no idea what it signifies.”

If the BID allegations are accurate, I do think these are issues that should merit further investigation, but this is so out of my skill-set, that it requires someone who truly understands the politics and intricacies of the situation, and that person is so not me, if I were to be brutally honest- I’m a snark, not a diplomat, and this can of worms would eat my face if I dared to step up into it’s ring,

As I stated earlier: “I’m a novice when it comes to the arena of local politics, the structuring of such initiatives, and what the required process is in order to create one, so any input I have would essentially boil down to a word-bite at best, personal embarrassment at worst.”

Regardless of my walking the waffling line, the conversation was interesting to say the very least, especially in regards to one of the aforementioned properties he owns, that being the vacant lot, which he’s half-jokingly suggested should be named “Parasite Park“, after the street-art someone [we all know who, wink, wink] plastered all over it. A graphic btw, that Baer claims both he and his wife actually liked, mainly for it’s superior attention to detail. 

So to the artist responsible; kudos, you done good.

As it turns out, vacant lots in Phoenix are taxed at double the rate of developed properties, PHXs rationale being that they necessitate a larger share of city services, such as police, fire, etc., by dint of not being fully realized. Now whether or not this is statistically true, it still presents as a tad bit

hypocritical, considering the City of Phoenix allegedly owns over 800 similar lots themselves. Past the tragic issues regarding the homeless and an occasional brush fire, I can’t really see this as a concern past the claim of a blighted urban landscape, which while a truly valid point, is not as simplistic as it sounds.

Especially when the city taxing you for it is essentially doing the same thing as you, and even more annoying when your property has been put up for sale as Baer has done, and you don’t get any takers. Just an aside I thought was interesting, given the fact that Downtown Phoenix is being swallowed up by developments that look as if they were designed by a Bauhaus student with a fetish for architecture that looks like a shoebox got busy with a WalMart behind a Taco Bell dumpster, an issue I’ll cover in the next blog, btw.

Back to the brouhaha. As our three hour conversation unfolds, Baer expresses both remorse and shock at the controversy that his “heat of the moment” remark generated, for as he puts it: “In the grand scheme of things, I’m small potatoes, I’m really nobody.” In fact, the blowback spurred on mostly by the earlier referenced article via the Phoenix New Times- a commentary that [according to Baer] didn’t feel that it was necessary to grant him the opportunity to expound upon his incendiary statement took him totally by surprise.

There’s a truly valid reason I gleefully call the PNT the “Pennysaver with Porn”, and it’s not just because it’s catchy as all f**k. No, the explanation lies within the fact that if they spent less time trying to stir the pot and more time getting all sides of a story, maybe they wouldn’t have to sell so much ad space to businesses you can’t take your kids to, as you awkwardly avoid the question of where you really go every Wednesday night after work. Let me be clear- I’m NOT blaming the writer of this piece- if anything, I’m betting dollars to donuts that the bad call on the details can be laid at their editors *feet, as it’s just the kind of salacious detail that they drool over. 
*[hooves, talons, tentacles, what have you]

Darn. And my aversion therapy regimen was going so well.  Oops. My bad. Back to the narrative.

Baer, as I stated earlier, comes off as a straight shooter, an attitude I can easily relate to, given my penchant for being blunt. And directness seems to be a trait that Baer possesses in buckets, if not truckloads. Another attribute I tend to like in a person, no matter what side they’re on. In the end, I’m just a big softy, I guess.

As our talk progresses, Baer informs that his real issue truly lies with a few specific individuals who, as he put it rather succinctly, claim to represent the PAS, of whom he flatly states: “nobody voted for them to be the Art King and Queen, and they sure as Hell don’t speak for me.“. Those familiar with the PAS already know who I’m talking about, and despite my past screed regarding one of those people specifically, I really don’t have too much interaction with them in the circles I run in, nor do I really pay either much mind. Different levels of the food chain and all that, you understand. Come to think of it, I’m not really sure if I have a level, so much as a niche that others overlook.

Now before you go burning me in effigy or sticking pins in a likeness adorned with a lock of my luxuriant ponytail, pause to remember that I’m just the messenger, and that my health insurance is non-existent, so take a moment and think before you start sending me the usual barrage of hate mail, snarky comments tossed out at art openings, and veiled threats passed via Chinese whispers.

Continuing, Baer hones in on what he claims he meant to say originally. before he,  “phrased it badly due to my being so damn aggravated by some of the people involved.” I’ll give you two guesses as to whom those persons might just be.

Just two simple speculations. Key word here is two. Dos. Twosome. Duo. A pair. A set. Two of a kind. Uno times Dos. You get the idea, methinks.

By way of disclaimer, I have heard that said persons don’t think much of me, if at all, but to be fair- that tidbit did come fifth hand, and they’ve never been anything less than professional when I’ve run into them publicly, so for all I know, they could either have a shrine to my destruction hidden in a hall closet, or both could be huge, yet closeted, Artbitch fans.

A snarky boy who’s just looking for his forever family can dream I guess, but the reality is more likely that they have no actual idea who I am. [See “small fish, big mouth.”] Not that I’m taking sides or anything. After all, I don’t want to wind up buried alive under the reclaimed wood floor-boards of a combination vegan coffee boutique and art gallery, and I’m way too set in my habits to start hanging out in a Starbucks anytime soon.

As I said earlier, I’m just the messenger, and this isn’t Sparta, so let’s all step back from the pit full of earth, water, and the piled corpses of Xerse’s unfortunately mouthy emissaries, before we all do something I’ll regret.

But… it does have relevance to something I’ve been grousing about for years, and that is this- we have way too many cooks in the kitchen in regards to the PAS, and some of those can only boil in a bag, if you know what I mean. Don’t misinterpret my take, it’s truly heartening to see so many 602 cheerleaders as of late, but let’s be real for a moment- some are here for community, some are here for charity, and some are here strictly for the commemorative plaques.

Granted, a strong argument could be made for my inclusion into one, if not all three, of these sub-groups, depending on your pov, but I’ve never claimed to speak for anyone but me. I have my own corner of the artistic turf, and I defend it like a man obsessed, but I’ve never assumed that anybody respects that or what I try to do. In my opinion, there’s really no clear and unifying leader who speaks for and within the PAS, but there sure are a lot of generals who think they’re in charge, no matter what the in proximity evidence or gentry may say.

And yes, I can already hear the smug detractors rallying cry: “well then, why aren’t you more politically involved on the local level then, oh great internet snark?“, and my retort is as basic as you can get- quite simply, I’ve always been an irritant to committees and agendas, and it’s usually more effective if I remain in the shadows. While I can lead, I absolutely abhor being the one who has to herd the cats, and my main skill-set has always been in serving as advocate, fixer, and occasional 2nd lieutenant.

As an aside, if anybody requires concrete proof that our artistic starship isn’t helmed by Captain Kirk but his fated to die redshirts instead, all we need do is look at the “success” of the PAS with a truly dispassionate eye.  Ready for a fun pros and cons list, faithful readers?

PRO: Roosevelt was named one of the “coolest streets in America”.
  [Source: http://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/blog/business/2016/06/cushman-wakefield-names-roosevelt-row-in-downtown.html]

 CON: It’s as edgy as a glass of warm milk, and has been so gentrified, it’s essentially a vanilla wafer come to life, who just wants to brag endlessly about how natural his fake lawn looks.

PRO: Our “arts district” was also named “one of the top ten art districts in America.”
[Source: http://ktar.com/story/92043/phoenixs-roosevelt-row-named-among-best-art-districts-in-the-country/  ]

CON: Please explain how this can be, since FF is nothing more than a rolling street party, hardly any art gets sold, the Creatives in this town still require day jobs in order to survive, add in the lack of serious promotion of the PAS, a dearth of knowledgeable media exposure of what we do past a crap-sack of a free newspaper that even Circle K won’t carry, and to top it all off, could someone satisfactorily defend why we’re only open two nights a month?

Sorry, but in order to truly be taken seriously, maybe we should stop patting ourselves on the back over every middling achievement, and should ramp it up like the other cities, and for once- go kick some serious ass in regards to showcasing the talent we have and what it can do. Don’t think I’m blaspheming, but I’m pretty sure NYC doesn’t even knows we’re alive in relation to being on the Arts map. [Please send hate mail and death threats to the usual place, thank you.]

PRO: The new developments will put Phoenix on the map as a city in upward transition.

CON: Yes… because lifting architectural inspirations directly from Portland and LA will do so much to define our uniqueness in regards to other cities, because nothing screams “distinctive” louder than purposely making sure your downtown looks just like everybody else’s, everywhere else.

I’m not sure who the architects designing these abominations are, but it’s high time that somebody takes away their cad programs and architectural LEGO sets until they can design something that’s truly and perceptibly Phoenix, as wrested from the ethereal to the corporeal. And while some of these new developments are touted as a means to raise our national visibility, they’re also akin to a strangler fig being set loose in a verdant garden.

We may not notice at first that our community is being forced out, but we’ll definitely become aware of it down the road, another issue I’ll address in the next part of this blog.

Sorry. Sometimes tangents take me away like a pack of hungry pterodactyls. My sincerest apologies. Back to the original plot. Asked how he would phrase his declaration given the perspective of hindsight, Baer quickly responds with: “If I had to say it again, I’d say the BID process is itself parasitic- I’m truly sorry for the unintended offense, which was not directed at the community itself, but those certain un-elected people who claim to represent it.”

Wrapping it up, Baer exits on this statement: “There’s room for the People, there’s room for the Artists, but there’s no room for the Bureaucrats.”

But isn’t there, though?

Especially given that they seem to be the ones truly controlling the path and destiny of our future, devoid of any knowledge of what makes our creative nucleus tick. I recently ran into one of these beige-walkers being shepherded around the PAS by two of our local and I might add, kick-ass Creatives who had taken it upon themselves to show this individual (who’s involved with the *tax-break seeking Circles development) to showcase what exactly the PAS has to offer and what it represents.
*[They didn’t get it by the way. Schadenfreude rocks.]

Two things: first, I’m proud of how the two Creatives involved took it upon themselves to attempt an education upon the clueless, and I heartily applaud them. Personally, I feel it’s an overly optimistic endeavor, due to the fact the deal is done, the ink is dry, and if these developers couldn’t be bothered to do the merest of research in regards to where they’re building, why would they care now? If one looks at the situation with an unbiased eye, it’s fairly obvious we’re all being played like an Ozark harp, and we’re dancing to their tune- not ours.

And second: I think that Baer’s comment (poorly phrased as it was), does raise a valid if somewhat uncomfortable point, and that’s this: who exactly is looking out for the PAS, and what is their plan to stop the presently occurring strangulation of what’s been built? Does it consist of digging in our heels for an inspiring, yet hopeless last stand, or praying for a deus ex machina that saves all that’s established?

But that’s for the next installment of “As Our World Burns”, methinks.
And when I come back…

I run in Circles, discuss giplets and gravy, and wonder why Phoenix needs to burrow in Portland’s closet when we have an entire wardrobe of our own to choose from.

“You must never feel badly about making mistakes … as long as you take the trouble to learn from them. For you often learn more by being wrong for the right reasons than you do by being right for the wrong reasons.” – Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth