Archive for June, 2012


Dan Savage VS GOProud

I’ve never understood the sort of person who would willingly vote for a party or a candidate that upholds policies that directly conflict with the voter’s best interest. It makes no sense. Why would you endorse and back someone who is going to vote against measures that would make your life better? Why would a low-income earner actually fight for the repeal of Obamacare? Why would minorities vote for hard-right goons who want to have them deported and treated like criminals? And, most obviously, why would gays endorse a candidate who is interested in preventing them from gaining rights they deserve? It would be like southern blacks voting for Jim Crow laws. It’s insane.

Dan Savage, perennial (not to be confused with perineal) favorite of mine, got into an online dust-up with a group called GOProud, who Savage describes as a “hard-right gay Republican organization—a rightwing front group that exists to pinkwash the GOP”, after they officially endorsed Mitt Romney for president. He tweeted:

Zing! Of course, Savage didn’t leave it there. Instead he expounded on his tweet in his column Savage Love.

Anyway, mixing it up with GOProud last week got me thinking about why a gay man would endorse—much less “commit significant resources” to help elect—a man who has pledged, if elected, to do as much harm as he possibly can to gay people. I mean, what kind of faggot supports a politician who would do him harm?

Oh, right: the same kind of faggot who would harm himself with drugs or alcohol or sex. The kind of gay men who don’t like themselves or other gay people much. But while most self-loathing, self-destructive gay men are content to abuse booze, drugs, or dick, the self-hating GOProud boys abuse themselves with politics. And just like gay meth addicts who aren’t satisfied harming only themselves, the boys at GOProud aren’t satisfied harming only themselves. They want to harm other gay people—they want to harm all gay people—by getting Mitt Romney elected. And just like your meth-addicted friend who pushed the drug on you, or your drunk friend who mocked you for stopping at four, or your sexually out-of-control friend who insisted that you were a prude if you didn’t play the come dump with him down at the bathhouse, the GOProud boys want you to abuse yourself the same way that they’re abusing themselves. They want you to vote for Mitt Romney for the same reason your meth-addicted pal wanted you to use that stupid drug.

Because they’re damaged.

The article is worth reading. In fact, the article he linked in his tweet is worth reading too. Get ready to be appalled at the willful ignorance displayed by the GOProuders.

Good for Dan Savage. He’s totally correct and I am glad he had the balls to stand up for himself and what he thinks is just in this situation, even after Chris Barron of GOProud got in his (virtual) face about it. It is encouraging to see someone so vocally, so publicly, stand up against the fools trying to prevent people who are different than they are from living their lives to the fullest. He should be an inspiration to those marginalized everywhere to fight to be taken seriously.

A day will come when you can give of yourself freely. You will give of yourself generously and selflessly for no other reason than that it is the right thing to do. For no other reason than that you want to. You will have a chance to pay forward all the kindnesses given to you when you were having a rough time, when you were bottoming out, when you really needed a helping hand. But today is not that day. Today is a day to take.

And take we shall.

Today is a day we shall take and we shall take dearly. The world will feel. What will the world feel, you ask? I don’t know. I am just the instrument. These decisions, they’re not mine. I am told to act and I obey. And today, they told me, today the world will feel what it is like to lose. The world will feel what it is like to suffer and anguish and lose.

Do not judge me. I do not make these decisions. I am told what to do and I act. Is that so difficult to reconcile with your notions of free will, of life, of morality? Is it such a difficult thing to believe that I act without considering the ramifications of the orders I am given? To kill a child? To bomb a church? To poison a well? Figuratively speaking on that last one of course. These days, you’d want to go for a large municipal water source. A reservoir, for example. That is the most efficient way to take out an entire population, beyond something like a thermonuclear strike. But those are so crude. So noisy. They lack subtlety.

We like subtlety. I think.

A few days ago an associate of mine—let us call him Bertrand, not his real name but it will suffice—thought that he would have a change of heart. He was given orders in the manner we are given orders, that is, hidden in the newspapers so that no one can trace their source, just like a hundred times before. Just like a hundred jobs before. But this time, Bertrand decided to think about the orders issued to him. He had a change of heart. He took issue with the task at hand.

Poor Bertrand. He was always so conflicted. There had been many times over the years I could see minuscule flickers of doubt dance across his eyes, but he never let them affect his performance. His commitment to our duty had been admirable even by the gold standard set by yours truly. He was a loyal, dedicated soldier who carried out his orders to the fullest extent every time. Except this time.

This is no hiding from the ones making our decisions for us. If an impure thought creeps into your head, they know. Every doubt, every hesitation, every slight misgiving and they know. To survive and thrive, one must become a pawn. Willfulness is your enemy. Let go. Be free. Act without thinking about why.

Bertrand asked why. Why killed Bertrand. Or more accurately, you might say I killed Bertrand, but the truth is that why is the reason he is dead. I was just the instrument. An appropriate word choice too. I made sweet music with Bertrand. I will never forget the great sweeping crescendo we achieved before crashing into silence. I loved Bertrand, but in the end he did not love me. It is the nature of my work, not to be loved, and this time was no different.

They know that we exist to serve and that to serve means not to be loved. It is essential to the human experience to seek love. We are social creatures, by nature, and love is the greatest natural expression of that. We give of ourselves when we love freely and unconditionally. To deny that instinct is to make yourself something more and less than human. A superdemihuman, if you will. That’s kind of funny, right? I just made that up. Feel free to use it later when people ask what happened.

Just a little while now.

Sometimes I remember my family. I remember my family and people I called friends. Do you remember your family? One of the first things they take from you is your memories. They are convinced that remembering will dull your effectiveness. In a lot of ways, they are right. I only assume this. No one has ever told me. I only guess based on what I have lost. My memories. My feelings. My loves. I understand what it is to give and why people do it, but I don’t know what it feels like. I don’t know what anything feels like. Do you remember your mother?

I am excited about what’s coming up. You’re curious, aren’t you? I know you are. I can tell. That is ok. You’ll find out what we have in store for you soon enough, but for now think about when you were a child. Think about the first time you rode a bike. About the first time you fell off that bike. Think about how scared you were. About how badly your knee hurt. About the way your fear intensified when you saw the slick shiny patch of blood seeping down your shin. How was that for you? Did you call out for your mother? Did she come to you?

You would never guess by looking at it, but this earthen floor holds a secret. A very big secret. I received my orders to give this gift to the world in the Sunday Times. Sunday papers always contained the biggest jobs and this was an Easter Sunday paper. Very big indeed.

We’re almost there. Soon you will find out what secret I have kept from you. I think you’ll like it. But first, think about your mother. Think about being a child and wanting your mother near you. Do you feel that right now? If you don’t, you’re about to. I do. I am very excited to give you this gift. Very excited. Because I love you.

A new video from Disasteradio just a day after I was enjoying “Gravy Rainbow” again so much I decided to put the album on my phone for my commute? Kismet!

This track comes from 2010′s Charisma (like “Gravy Rainbow”). I quite like this song and am glad they decided to make this bizarro, mutant-filled music video for it. And, if nothing else, it’s tiding us over until the next Disasteradio release.

To the future!

I got real bored at home tonight. But instead of being creative and doing something worthwhile, I thought I’d live tweet the film Battle Royale. I only put it up on Twitter this time since people seem to get a little annoyed when I blow up Facebook as well.

And now that WordPress has the option to embed tweets, let’s recap the whole thing typos and all! Yay!

Read the rest after the jump.

I realize that I forgot to use the word “jazzy” yesterday when discussing the new Ihsahn record. How terrible of me! The record is definitely jazzy as fuck. It is the best proggy, jazzy, post black metal, Norwegian metal record I’ve heard in ages. In fact, it might be the best metal record I’ve heard since Protest The Hero’s 2011 release Scurrilous.

Unlike the Protest the Hero record, however, Eremita is not a record that will sway non-metal listeners. Indeed, this is a metal album for the truest of the true metal nerds. If you know the difference between Goregrind and Slam, this record might be for you. If you know the difference between Cascadian Black Metal and the New Wave of American Black Metal, this record is probably for you. If you have an intricate knowledge of what made Emperor stand out amongst Black Metal bands in the early 90s and why this is relevant at all, then this record is definitely for you. If you fall into that last camp, you’re already listening. Julian Knöx, I am looking at you.

I was also totally wrong yesterday when I described the record as less heavy than 2010′s After. Eremita is just as heavy, but perhaps more varied, more dynamic. Eremita is a metal adventure

If I was forced to sum it all up with a clip from the Simpsons, I would use this one.

Because you need 23 seconds of grind RIGHT NOW.

Sorry about the cruddy quality on the Youtubes. I was not responisble for uploading this spot. HOWEVER, I am responsible for the voice over work at the end of it. Yay! Check it out.

Click the image for the stream.

So, does Ihsahn’s newest proggy, post-black-metal release sound anything at all like Metallica or Daughtry? Of course the fuck not.

Is it way more awesome than that specious comparison would suggest? Absolutely.

Should you be listening to it right now? Yes. Yes, you should.

Ihsahn (ex-Emperor) is getting spacier and spacier with each release, and I couldn’t be happier with the progression. The man who singlehandedly convinced me that brass instruments could be used effectively in metal (sorry, Gwar), a thing I considered impossible, seems to be able to do now wrong. Eremita is markedly less heavy that 2010′s After, but there’s no doubt this is a metal record. It is one of my most anticipated releases for this year next to Gojira’s forthcoming album.

Stand out tracks for me so far are “The Paranoid” (with Devin Tonswend!) and “The Eagle and The Snake,” the latter of which is particularly huge. Check the sax in that one.

I’ve also found that the whole thing is on Spotify, so if that’s your jam, check it out there.