Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Building up a (Another) Head of Steam

In the blogosphere, it seems there are bloggers of two kinds. There are the dedicated souls, real writers, who find the time and the subject matter to make a post virtually 8 days a week. As in all writing, the literary value falls somewhere between the sacred and the profane.

In like measure is the quality of the other type of blogger, the intermittent kind. Like myself, and the President of Iran - quiet, easy-going souls who write when the muse takes them, or when the pressure reaches the red zone. Of the latter sad stuff is this post.

All the pet peeve buttons have been pushed this week from Governmental BS, to police BS, to economic BS, military BS and the BS that wafts in torrents from the social whirl, and what passes for our ‘entertainment’. I’ll probably need more one blog to cover the complete upchuck.

First there is the on-going Israel-Gaza thing. The latest round is ‘over’ but the notion that ‘they deserved it’ remains paramount. The ‘victims’, as victors are styled in this instant, continue the quarantine of the ghetto by the Med. Pledge as much as you like, there’s little ‘aid’ getting into Gaza beside dibber bombs and anti-rocket artillery strikes.

Then there are the other ‘bothers’ in Iraq and Afghanistan. President Obama has declared the date for the light at the end of the tunnel. But Iraq has been a non-blip on the screen of the American media since GWB received the report that the ‘Surge had Succeeded’ as expected. Things are going great, unless you happen to be one of the Iraqis, in the hundreds by week, caught up in some form of violence, or one of the ill-fated half-dozen or so young Americans who draw the ‘unlucky ticket’ and come home in a box each month. The wounded, like the dead, receive little mention - and that rarely, other than regarding the wonders of rehabilitative medicine. Afghanistan is more on the media horizon as the new President prepares to ‘surge’ the only other ‘just war’ the USA has left.

The economy hasn’t improved since last I griped about it. Like that neo-colonial preacher who intoned about us ‘being sinners in the hands of an angry god’, it appears we’re now being stupid in the hands of a good number of incompetent financial experts. In either case there’s a certain resolution to fate, head up one’s back side, a hoping-for-the-best fatalism on the ride. Except for the ‘smart’, who are stockpiling ‘value’ for the possible collapse of ‘civilization’ - read the consumer society - as we know it.

Governments have ‘responded’ to the economic crisis in a number of ways. But up among the really dense are the actions of Canada’s ruling conservative party. A program of tax-cuts for the well-heeled, combined with a more robust level of corporate welfare for those who happen to be in big business, has the country driving deeper into debt at a pace that would dizzy a deficit-maker like lyin’ Brian Mulroney.

Not only that, there’s a diversion program designed to help take our minds off the ballooning problems. It’s the Russians - invading our Arctic wastes. Ivan didn’t realize the firestorm of patriotic horse-shit he was engendering as he munched his pickle sandwich across the north pole last week. Stevie and company called up visions of legions of Spetznaz descending on the Pickle Dog reserve and getting their jump boots dirty in our sovereign tar sand puddles. Oh yeah, and new anti-gang laws that will keep us all safe - until the first illiterate Jamaican ‘pistolero’ actually gets charged - I almost hope it’s a white kid to set a good precedent. But shooting people is really a ‘social problem’, didn’t ya know? Quelle Merde!

Closer to home is the recent police hoo-hah about the taser. The united ‘Pleece Cheefs’ of Canada - in convention assembled - are standing strong on this life-saving instrument of enforcement which saves the lives of officers that might otherwise be endangered by roarin’ drunks, psycho cases and feisty farts the likes of which are a social innovation and have never been problematic to the 'fuzz' before. Citing 150 studies, not a one of which associate Tommy Swift's little electric gizmo to a certifiable death, the ‘Cheefs’ took the tack that, used with all the prudence the cops could muster - and that’s a lot of prudence, the taser is GOOOOOD, not BAAD. Meanwhile the public was laughing at the RCMP hearing into the death of that rampant immigrant after a tasering last year. The young officer who carried the taser described how the Pole turned on the four officers with a stapler in his hand before he got his 38 seconds (or about 16 times longer than it took the officer to deploy and fire it) of electrical ‘enforcement’ to comply.

Leading the charge of the Cheefs was our favourite renaissance cop, Julian ‘ Comes Stabuli et magistratum Praetoriae’ Fantino. Canada’s ‘top cop’ in the absence of an actual police officer heading up the Mounted, Julian took the lead in defending the taser, defiantly telling the media wonks to ‘do their own research’ when asked which of the 150 taser studies he’d read. Two days later he was on nation-wide media leading the mourning for a long dead cop and citing the opening lines from his book, “We’ve lost one”. Julian couldn’t make the parole hearing, but he made sure the cop’s spirit was well-represented. Just yesterday Julian took public umbrage at some lightweight media hack who had the temerity to address the Chief’s wind-bagging in print. Julian either has a media staff keeping watch, or too much time on his hands, for the offending article appeared in one of Ontario’s lesser lights as far as media goes. So did Julian’s pontifications, which would have reduced lesser men to blubbering incontinence, but probably will bounce off Mike VanTandt. Julian protesteth too much and in the style of another ‘cheef of pleece’, where huffing offense and indignation at insult, pass for reflection, lucid comment and any attempt to get out of that bunker. The ‘leaders’ of to-day’s police have that ‘last defenders on the walls of civilization’ mentality, that, while buying into the mind-set of those willing to pay more for fancied security, actually makes police, and the administration of justice, a potential social problem.

Finally there’s the social whirl.

We’re just off the Oscars, Hollywood’s annual display of public onanism. Another turgid performance in a ‘new’ format. The only film with any ‘value’ and that a moderately entertaining one, was from India. Other than that, another couple of holocaust reminders, before the last sad victims step into the mystery. A spot of superstar ephemera about a man born backwards, in time that is, for breech births aren’t all that uncommon, and a plasticized revival of the fifties and sixties with genuine used furniture, both with ‘superstar’ casting and both fairly flat at the box. Penn won best actor for playing Harvey Milk as a raving fag???

Paris Hilton has a new ‘reality’ show - ‘who wants to be my friend’? Donald Trump continues to asshole his business through coteries of celebs. The Bachelor is constantly ‘falling’ and can’t get up. Dancing with the Stars and the next American Idol are starting to look ‘substantial’. Egoistical dopers in rehab, rehashed crimes, up-front encounters with the dead, the wittiest show is about a dope-making science teacher. Maybe when the economy tanks and prices fall, we’ll get some musical spectaculars like the dirty thirties’ stuff - ‘thing-a-thons’ and howza, howza, howza..

On the bright side it’s only 20 days to the first day of Spring. At least the nice weather can hide a multitude of ‘sins’.

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