I love you too...
my baby's so sweet she's rots my teeth,
the fig of creation, I find love to be such an awkward word,
but am only comfortable in pronouncing it,
in my case childless,
to this beguiled wife with whom I execute it
not unlike the notion of sugar water. Towards others,
those feelings and outreach is a reflex, but the word
LOVE itself poses quite a stumbling block to the poet long
preferring the word RESPECT, but hello, as signifier
knowing too how the American gangster culture
pretty much bloodied that word for me to boot,
so one if by wink, two if by blink...
and if it brings you happiness, sue me.
Crisp despair churns nightly, Virginia reels
assisting so far (with the stern comfort of law)
knotted leaves of deciduous scale die brightly...
dancing the continental congress,
daring to forsake the soil,
a few handsome reviews
begin bubbling up.
Spring wheezes its way across western granite
due north of sad nations, but we praise
only the worst of it. Time's gunpowder
charm, the cracked chill of a lingering
spiked but righteous scrit.
Forests as dense with deer as these lines
climb trick mountain trails of a simpler age
where decay was just another quickening stage
where delay was just another sickening cage
mimicking the sting of death
drawn along party lines.
Roaring past juiced effects of American score,
feted wheels of justice properly seen
melt against fumed highway heat,
each grain hard throttled hubris
a philanthropic ride unto
the scarlet whore
where greatness is measured in cycles
where frankness is buried in game faces
where self-crucifixion is lost to wealth
and this sorry battleground, where art and politics
beat each other up, is cleared of all integrity,
and few are they who appear the wiser...
Maybe it's just the way we were brought up to respect the sacrifice our forefathers have made on our behalf in the service of liberty and freedom of conscience that I wouldn't change a word of the remark I recently came across. Fools, indeed. My friend and agile compatriot in the nascent anti-jihad resistance, young Chris Logan, made this churlish but spot on remark, "America, arming the Islamic world. Afghanistan, Bosnia, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan, the Saudis, Turkey and Uzbekistan. At one time or another we have given, or are still giving these countries military aid. There are probably many more, but this is all being done on the hope that the "moderate" Islamic world rises up. We are led by fools."
True, as I say, fools indeed, but perhaps this is their white hat way of one day fighting a fair fight. Remember the old west movies where a gunslinger would toss a pistol at his next victim saying he could never shoot an unarmed man. Not that I agree with this policy of arming the whole damned world, Chris, just making a sarcastic observation.
Project Scenewash has been heard to decree
the awful battleground where art and politics plea,
beat and battered each other up, none to agree,
and few are they who seemed the wiser...
Painting the fabric civilization vain
must wear to spare itself the critical pain
crude slavery unjust must follow
profane, the closed closet eye
torn against brash sky too soon
no rain, this wrecking ball
heart next to nix over noon
a vanishing dead stain,
the wretched call sign
of the blood red moon...
and that, of course,
is a course made plain,
fussy labors in vain no single man
can reign, by every account his plan
suffers the curse, his hopes lost too,
to the shallow gray range,
the eagle, the lion,
the bitter cold change.
SAMPLEX IS THE NAME of the street zine I created and distributed among a certain fan base of Washington DC provocateurs and poseurs in the region's seminal punk and harDCore music scene of 1984-1985. This ludicrous body of half-wit scoundrels, pontificants and prevaricators worked the clubs between Seventh & E Streets and Ninth Street, from "d.c. space" to the "9:30 Club" where fame was chased and fame was made. The 'zine ran eight issues, individually themed, issues which were filled not with the usual confabulated local band lore and raw music sycophancy, but WS Burroughs-inspired cut-ups and collage, cartoons, and other riffs and ripoffs mostly poking fun at the scene itself right from the center of all its purported mayhem, and only the occasional invented or imaginary interview. Each issue consisted of 8-12 pages of tri-folded & heavily stapled panels printed on both sides of 8.5"x14" paper, and xeroxed wherever I could "borrow" a copying machine to print out 50-100 copies each issue. That's a lot of FREE or nearly free xeroxing.
This SAMPLEX blog is in honor of those earliest days of brutal self-punishing self-publishing. New stripes, but the sound, the fury, the beat go on...
PS: Look for reproductions of some of the original SAMPLEX pages here, later, as we post them.
I follow you regarding the craps hinted in the previous message. It's true that "you can lead todays lefties around by their dreadlock hair-extensions with the smallest tug". But at the same time we easily can admit that most of the people (doesn't matter whether they are lefties or whatever) really don't give a damn about the revolution a bunch of US had been theorizing (here or there).
I think what disconcerts me about the statement above is that it seems to take for granted a division between those who can "theorize" and the working class. If you are feeling a gap it isn't an intelligence gap it's a class gap; it's not about support for radical change it's over trust and sincerity in those who claim to know better what is good and bad and their good intentions to realize it. It's not because ordinary people do not or can not understand the workings and evils of the system it's because they know them much better: "intellectuals" more than often lack real knowledge of just what it is like to be born into trapped, exploited, cheated and abused neighbourhoods.
I'm working class and all the people I work with are working class (in fact at the moment every last one of them is black working class) and I can tell you a clear and certain factthat I have heard more genuine insight, shrewdness and sincerity from the mouths of common people than from the pens of middle class and academic "vanguards of the working class", or from the white-people-with-dreadlocks brigade who are rooted nowhere and ultimately committed to nothing as a result.
But there is nothing wrong or pointless about "theorizing", though it's a word I do not find helpful. Discussion ought to take place to try and deepen understanding of how everything works. Those who can do it should do itand take a clearer perception of conditions back to the communities in which they live and work. Everyone needs to think, so why snip off the activity of thinking, call it theorizing and divorce it ideologically and socially from its application in daily life?
I need to add though that not a lot of what takes place on lists like this, or seminars in colleges or in all the other supposedly intellectual theatres where this "theorization" is supposedly taking place...is anything of the kind. On the contrary it seems to be a battleground where people hone and refine the very things they claim to be against; find new excuses to obscure the truth and divert others from coalescing around it. It is class war over the spectacle. It would be nice to have genuine discussion once in a while but in the absence of true common roots or listserv mediation it isn't very common.
Asperger: "People are enchanted and mesmerized by "the apparent" of the spectacle and that fucking pseudo(?) "objectivity" is good and is enough from their point of view. They feel comfortable being trapped inside the great show of appealing-consuming-producing-exploiting and so on. The spectacular society is reassuring for their simple and mechanical minds."
I can't begin to tell you just how condescending and spectacular a cliché that is. Instead I'll say something potentially more interesting. Human existence is existential: there must be something to fill the void and to structure everyday life, and there must be an ideological framework, a worldview, only within which all words, phenomena, values and beliefs acquire a place and a meaning and a value. Worldview, and all the habits that stream forth from it, is as fundamental and material a necessity as food water and air. It's the way we are made.
Therefore ultimately there is no complete distinction possible between what is spectacle and what is situation; or what is recuperation and what is detournement and so on. There are only inherited models from which to construct models. Very little truth, if any, is ahistorical; all ideas, appearances, meanings and values must exist in a perpetual war over ideas, appearances, meanings and values.
What is eternal is the wisdom of good conductof seeing and revealing the truth in all its partiality, of understanding the common interest of fairness and distributing needs and opportunities with equity. What is eternal also seems to be that which I call "original sin" -- the tendency to imitate and repeat evils and errors, to reiterate imperfect worlds from imperfect worlds; bad habits of mind and behaviour that not having been perceived for what they are cannot be rooted out: "karma". Thus life is not really composed of true and false images nor even right and wrong values so much as right and wrong choices. From the existential point of view, to be free means to be condemned to choose between the good and the evil within alternative possible actionsendlessly. No wonder they fall back into the provided routines, spectacles and social clichés: it is so much easier to have something that tells you what to do than to have to face each and every moment in a cosmic abyss of uncertainty.
And these "theorizations" you're referring to are simultaneously an attempt to defend an Ideology of distorted self-serving de/perceptions at war with the attempt to add and revise it with new understandings of the truth. The fact is, the "Left" (whose name itself is as spectacular a piece of nonsense as you could ever hope for) has been struggling with the contradiction between its moral outrage for the world's underdogs and the fact that the underdogs will not meekly back them up in return ever since it robbed the working class of its politics, at about the same time it started robbing rastafarians of their hair-dos, the genuinely homeless of their squatters movements and so on. All the class rhetoric and fashionware and shrunken heads by which today's radicals identify themselves have been stolen from somebody elseas if by possessing their tattoos and music, hairstyles and footwear you could somehow take power over their souls and legitimize yourselves.
Thanks for keeping up the resistance, Morales. Just know that the busy silence of we who are marked to fall always proceeds the clashing of the cymbals, while those of us who warned the others (now laughing and mocking, hissing and despising our herald) will have witnessed the fullness of truth, not theyand by inertia or grace will be prepared to shield others from the amplified atrocities as they arrive. That's the extent of whatever hope I have remaining because I have learned that minds are not changed by the politeness of social stability but by the harsh tongues of upheaval and crisis. This country will probably awaken when Europe implodes, but I believe that America is also marked for crisis, a result of having become sadly corrupted and from our national potential far have we strayed.
Don't fear the Marxist-Islamofascism creep, however. Resist it wherever we can, but don't expect any sudden miracles quite yet. People still treasure their fool's gold, reflecting among the dueling mirrors of social consciousness that they've done the math, not quite realizing they've only been using imaginary numbers while letting the real digits slip away...
And allow me this opportunity to insist that I am not naive, no matter what I choose to paint or wrestle into inconsequential line. It's rather obvious by now that I frittered away that excuse six senses and a million miles ago in a taste of trench madness. I may be a fool, but I'm nobody's fool.
Bob Amerson and I become close friends that summer, but this was a small town, and this was what happened in small towns back in the 60s where few homes ever locked their doors, even when folks left town for a few days. Boyhood allegiances shifted quickly without warning, without rationale, without lasting impression in those days. Childhood innocence should be so easy for kids today without ending up in a grave.
I've been aware of this sleepy right eye since junior high when it first started popping up into school photos. I didn't start short career in sandlot boxing, until a bit later, but I did suffer a couple of black ones put there by Bob Amerson immediately after school while we were in the sixth grade. But I picked myself up and met the usual in-town ladsDavey Ryals, his brother Terry, Terry Simmons, Reggie Sawyer, Jimbo Caldwell, Louie "Mooches" Davis, Ronnie Wright, Jimmie Pitts, Tommy Hall, a fews others I'm sure, and Terry Kennedy, the one girl who lived just behind the field, while the rest of us just walked or rode our bicyclesat the ballfield for a pickup game just as was expected nearly every day. Bob did not. I was also surprised to see Donnie Findley there that afternoon, but none of my own brothers were there. If they were I don't recall. But I apparently had earned the applause of the whole squad of twelve to fifteen boys already slinging hash on the field. Sure, I suffered the usual bouts of self-consciousness at school over the next few days, but nobody ever ragged me. From the best I could tellrolling around the ground (near the tree roundabout where kids who rode parked our bicycles) swinging punches, landing a few, ducking others, before getting pinched by the ears and led to Principal Huff's office by Mrs. Middleton who had taught us both two years earlierthe crowd of twenty-five to thirty, best I could reckon, was split fifty-fifty. But nobody ever ragged me. Bob showed at school the next day. He didn't seem any worse for wear, no shiners, no nothing. But nobody ever ragged me. Bob Amerson and I become close friends that summer, but this was a small town, and this was what happened in small towns back in the 60s where few homes ever locked their doors, even when folks left town for a few days. Boyhood allegiances shifted quickly without warning, without rationale, without lasting impression in those days. Childhood innocence should be so easy for kids today without ending up in a grave.
Unfortunately, all too predictable long before the November election. Chicago pols don't fall far from the tree. But any MSM reportage?
Nah, not a chance. Sadly, America continues to succumb to primitive stages of iron heel fascism, pure and simple, 21st century style. Jack London had it right.
And so was Huey P. Long, who is to have first articulated this American truism, evident today in both parties, depending on who's holding power at the time of the observation, "Sure we'll have fascism here but it will come as an anti-fascist movement." So with Obama's crackerjack collusion with big business along with enforcement of his health care apparatus in controlling the entire population, we who are not blind followers of a political party are obliged to point this out.
Josh Singer at 5:18pm June 13 wrote: Fascism? I thought Obama was bringing socialism!?! Maybe you guys mean "7th Day Adventism"...?
The National Socialist Party, my friend, was a leftist, fascist power grab, fascism defined as corporatist government, and Obama has moved in that direction more than any president since George W. Bush. I'm sorry Josh that your level of understanding my language consists of labels and quick quips, but digging into the roots of political ideology reveals some very interesting tracks and pedigrees. You should shore up on the classics a bit more, or at least strengthen up your arguments. Just because I hang out with rock and rollers like yourself on occasion, and you've observed how inadequate I am to that task, doesn't mean I haven't spent my own time peeling back the onion of historical audacity and intrigue...
You seem to be a son of Plato, and in my book, that's not a good thing. I would explain, but this space is tragically limited, don't you think? But see Karl Popper's The Open Society and Its Enemies, if you appreciate a good start. Disagree with me, but don't take me as a fool. I may be a fool, but I'm nobody's fool.
I apologize Josh, if my writing seems to exert an air of nastiness, but that's not my intention. I write deliberately. take it or leave it, but I live among ideas, while personalities, at this stage of my life, not so much. Guess that's always been the case, but ever more profoundly in my middle 50s than ever...
And Plato, the philosopher king, strikes at the origins of despotism, at the origins of dictatorship straight through Marx and Hegel. I prefer the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution, however flawed we citizens be. The struggle among self-owned individuals is far superior to any Dear Leader we have ever had the displeasure to witness...
Unfortunately America has long lost her way...
Don't adhere to the left, and don't adhere to the right. But based on those observable and theoretical principles addressing the way of all flesh, I am certain in my own mind that Obama is making things quite worse, either intentionally, or in poor judgment. And thus I say the same about those Democrats who now cling to their book on Marx.
I CAN'T HELP MYSELF in picking up Charlie's theme of inclusion, even though I am alert to the fact it's not the original thrust of the thread. One of the many stupid ironies of the multiculturalist enforcement program, and I do know something about these false realties first hand, is that ancient myth that we humans are actually all the same, or should be. Well, if we are all indeed the SAME, why the great push to make sure we test that theory by coercing all this sameness together? And yet when given the choice of aggregating freely under generally open conditions, we notice the tendency that real (or superficial) likeness does indeed TEND to gravitate together, that is to say, segregate by race, by gender, by levels of achievement, beauty, class, fan base, school matriculation, et cetera, but not EXCLUSIVELY. This obvious predilection is seen everywhere; in nature, in human society, on the periodic table, in a dust bunny, and in the laws of logic itself. Some may laugh, snort, guffaw, chortle and quiver in calling this an over-simplication. I'd agree, and then I'd ask, an over-simplication of what?
After a "days on end" bombardment of these viral things, I have succumbed to pressures, peer or otherwise, to post my own. Whatever. And don't forget to catch a few tracks over at Radio Scenewash. Enjoy.
As a younger adolescent, "Simon and Garfunkel's Greatest Hints" stands the test of time in making that first early impact. Of course, I also heard a good chunk of Johnny Cash and the Carter Family, thanks to my old man's influence, which has always stuck with me. Remember, I grew up in a very small town in the Old South, and this was when AM ruled. FM was still mostly a twinkle in the eye. We caught our radio in snatches where we could. Down on the Georgia coast, snagging the bouncing waves of WLS in Chicago and WOWO in Fort Wayne, IN was hit and miss depending on the weather and cloud cover, but it was massive, even illicit fun to curl up under the covers at night, and steal those rogue high-powered AM waves when we could. Listening to rock and roll in those innocent youthful years in the late 60s took work, and patience. Then came high school and own my first vinyl purchase...
1. Flowers - Rolling Stones (paradigm No. 1, poet laureates with guitars)
2. Harvest - Neil Young
3. Blonde on Blonde - Bob Dylan
4. Greetings from Asbury Park - Bruce Springsteen
5. The Hoople - Mott the Hoople
6. Close Enough For Rock and Roll - Nazareth
7. This Year's Model - Elvis Costello
8. Telekon - Gary Numan
9. Power, Corruption, Lies - New Order
10. We've Got The Beat - the Go Gos
11. Never Mind the Bollocks - Sex Pistols (paradigm No.2, punk political underground)
12. Easter - Patti Smith
13. Ten Witches - 9353 (single, but brutal)
14. Senseless Offerings - Black Market Baby
15. The Age of Quarrel - Cro-Mags
16. Troops of Tomorrow - The Exploited
17. Psalm 69 - Ministry
18. Rammstein - Mutter (paradigm No.3, industrial religious goth & electronica)
19. The War on Errorism - NoFX
20. Assassinate - Birmingham 6
21. Harmonizer - Apoptygma Berzerk
22. Jesus Christ Superstars - Laibach
23. Embryodead - Wumpscut
24. Cyberia - Cubanate
25. Linger Fickin' Good - Revolting Cocks
26. Southern Born Killers - Stuck Mojo
27. Judgement - VNV Nation
28. Burden - King Giant
Okay, these are the "gamechanger" LPs threaded into three distinctive but overlapping paradigms, each listed in the chronological order more or less (I didn't use references to map this list) in which I was introduced to them, or in one case, a single track that egregiously throttled my perspective in terms of those emotional and intellectual cadences which continued to draw me to the music as I pursued the soundtrack of my life.
A probing sort hiding among my friends might even scratch closely enough at this list to expose one or two similar strains of energy these selections reflect over forty or so years of rocking out to the Almighty Sounds of My Deliverance, but then again, we live in such superficial times where nothing matters very long.
This list is not a comprehensive list of my favorite albums of all-time, or within any given season, but they are the life impacted albums, the ones that have inevitably left its mark in such a way within its particular context, that I need no bread crumbs to find my way back to them.
And we must remember that there are always many global and esoteric variables at play in considering these impact moments in one's rather random listening life, but this is not the space to map that baseline. Suffice it to say, however, these 28 LPs will always remain special, each for their own reasons, to me. Perhaps there are more yet to come.
"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""