Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Guest Editorial: Today's Dieties Just Don't Have Any Follow Through

Today's guest editorial is by Tezcatlipoca, the Aztec pantheon's lord of the hoary underworld.

News of (yet another) prophetic failure by Jesus to destroy the earth was greeted with a mixture of dismay and bemusement this week, as California radio preacher Harold Camping scrambled to deal with the fallout.

Per the Atlantic Wire:  "I can't tell you what I feel right now.  I haven't understood it correctly because I'm still here."

So is Rev. Camping even considering changing his allegiance to another diety?  Say to someone who can demonstrate a little more follow through?  Not likely:  "I don't think I'm going to stop listening to him. . . . I gotta listen to him."

Well, of course.  Why should Camping defect?  Just to whom could he defect, for starters?  Be it some 1,000+ seat megachurches in L.A. or the 700k "monster-"mosque in Mashhad, Iran or the lowliest roadside shrine outside of Wallawallajapur, India, there isn't a single diety willing or able to show a little backbone and actually choke off all life on the planet as promised.  All talk, no walk.

Meh.  I just can't understand how we all got here, this Age of Mediocrity.  In my day, if a god didn't deliver the goods when His chosen instrument had anounced the intentional to blot out the sun or cover the people in a rain of boils or choke the life from every man, woman, child and beast with a sulforous mist for some supposed moral infraction or another, He found Herself a backnumber pretty quickly. 

Ever hear of Paederastes, Tyrant God of Thanatos?  No?  Not surprising.  When this ancient Hellenic diety showed a remarkable preference for swilling uouzo with the Furies instead of showing up on time and laying the city of Syracus waste, as per the promise of his oracle Euphamistikos in 238 B.C.E., he was laughed out of the Union of Metaphysical Archetypes.  I have no idea what he's doing nowadays, but the last I heard, he couldn't coralle enough believers together to pull off a decent toothache, much less an apocolypse of holocaustic proportions.

Listen, I'm not blowing my own horn here. I never had any aspirations to be worshipped on some vast, global scale.  I was a simple ethno-urge, not much more than a tribal tutelary spirit for the Nahuatl-speaking people who migrated to Tenochtitlan, and I never pretended to be anything else.  Shit, even in the heyday of my cult in the 16th century C.E. it was well-recognized that I myself was but one incarnation in a line of horrific Night Lords that stretched all the way back to the now-forgotten Olmec civilization of 1500 B.C.E.'s San Lorenzo Valley.  But Me-Damn-It, when I received the grizzly, day long blood sacrifices of tens of thousands of happless pesants and captured warriors, I showed a little gumption and gave back some blood in return.  Just ask Mictlantecuhtli, or "smiley" as we call him these days, how he likes me now.

Ah, why should I even bother?  Nobody ever listens anyway.  It's been like, what, 5,772 years or something and the best Yahweh can show for himself in all that time is some cream-puff of an avatar who couldn't apocolypse his way out of a soggy kreplach, much less pull off the extinction of all life in the universe!  Meanwhile true-blue gods of horror and mayhem go ignored and dispised . . . .

Friday, May 6, 2011

Iron Man Converts to Islam

Washington D.C.

According to Jim, a man well-placed within the U.S. intelligence establishment, the recent press statement by Al Qaeda admitting the death of Uasama bin Laden is merely the latest in a series of subtle feints by the fiendishly clever Pakistani intelligence service, the ISI, to distract the American public from a far more troubling menace lurking below the surface of public furore:  the conversion of Iron Man to Islam.

Although not currently at liberty to devulge precisely how he came about this extraordinary information, for fear of putting his sources in jeopardy, he generously shared with New Druid Express his analysis of this shocking development, and a daring speculation of even more startling news which may emerge in coming weeks.

Symbollocks The Druid:  The admission of Uasama bin Laden seems only to intensify the scrutiny surrounding the suspicious circumstances under which he was found and killed, especially his presence near the heart of Pakistan's military and intelligence network.  Iron Man is viewed by some as a washed up 1960's entertainment franchise who's seen its best days come and go.  Even at the height of its poularity, the related video game acheived no more than a ranking of 8,927 from Gamerankings.com.  Why should Americans care, let alone believe, that Iron Man has converted to Islam?

Jim:  Your comments are well taken.  People have rightly become increasingly jaded by the constant torrent of lies spewed forth by a cynical, manipulative oligarchal elite in Washington and around the world.  Sadly, this is precisely what that elite have hoped for--a despondent populace so exhausted from battling the cognitive dissonance issuing from its own continual barrage of un- and half-truths that they are unable to appreciate the very real danger they are in, let alone mount any effective opposition.

But let's just step back and take our bearings, shall we?  The puppet-show character of U.S. foreign policy does make for entertaining melodrama, but it's pretty hard to interpret it as a sincere effort to address the threat posed by Al Qaeda.  It's well known that Al Qaeda emerged in the 1980's as a wider regional manifestation of the same U.S. policy of covertly supporting regional forces in Asia to undermine the Soviet Union's sphere of influence.  It's even more widely known that Iron Man's alter ego, Tony Stark, is a multimillionaire industrialist who made his fortune in the 1960's selling weapons technology to combat that self same Soviet Union.  Coincidence?

STD(?):  I'm not sure I'm following . . . Iron Man is a fictional--

J:  Ha!  Fictional indeed!  It ranked in the top 3 places during each of its first four weeks of release!  With a total worldwide theatrical gross of over $318 MILLION!  Before even considering ancilliary streams of revenue like DVD release and licensed products like Arby's glasses, action figures,  pet toys or contraceptive devices.  Have you got $318 million lying around to testify to YOUR OWN reality?

STD:  Well, no. But--

J:  But precisely.  Perversely, the demise of the Soviet Union actually INCREASED--not decreased--the corrosive influence of corrupt war profiteers like Stark.  Taking advantage of the myopically triumphalist jingoism in the United States in its wake, the policy of cryto-Nazi propagandists like 2-time Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was to pursue an aggressive strategy of reliance upon new technologies rather than conventional ground forces, the infamous flying drones being merely the most prominent example.

The gullible American public never suspected, let alone questioned, just how such a radical policy could be implemented without creating an extraordinary level of dependence upon private sector robber barons like Stark.  Even a 15th century theorist, like Macchiavelli, just barely emerged from an era that wasted a good deal of its energies on crude, fantastic calculations such as of the number of angels who could dance on the head of a pin, understood that effective governance ultimately depends on holding a monopoly over physical violence.  Apparently Uncle Walter was too enthralled with the shadow puppetry of the obviously faked "moon landing" to see that one coming . . .

STD:  Okay.  That does make a strong case for Iron Man's strategic signifigance to the U.S.  But how do you know he converted to Islam?  And even if he has, why should that create such a concern on the part of the ISI that'd they'd sacrifice Uasama bin Laden to cover it up?

J:  Well, I should think the general phallocentric culture of America's right wing would be fairly obvious.  I mean, Bush II didn't exactly make his latent homosexuality a top secret when he announced that he'd looked deeply into Russian president Putin's eyes and immediately preclaimed his undying love.

So it was only a matter of time until Tony Stark's own latent misogyny emerged, specifically in Vol. 3 Issue #38, when Stark's long time love interest Rumiko Fujikawa was caught in an affair with his rival, Tiberius Stone.  What followed was a long painful dark night of the soul.  Stark questioned every single assumption that he'd held up to that point, not only his commitment to the relationship with Rumiko, but his very ability to discern good from evil, correctly perceive reality.

I'm really surprised you've asked that question.  It was all illustrated, graphically and in depth from Vol. 3 Issues #38 through 87 . . .

STD:  I apologize.  I guess I never bothered to question how that necessarily would lead him to Islam.

J:  Well, er . . . True enough, it's not entirely due to some inherent character of Islam per se.  There are many sects and forms of Islam, many of which reflect the same right/left continuum that exists within Western Christianity or Judaism. 

But please do consider Stark's specific context.  Here was a man in deepest doubt about the very nature of the universe he lived in, a universe that had, heretofore, cast him as a champion of free market American neoliberalism.  If that system was wrong, could its supposed polar opposite (but, in fact, functional equivalent) Wahabist Islam be correct?

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