Eschatology for Modern Living

Posts tagged “George W. Bush

A New Chapter

Greetings. I am Upton, the new writer here at The New Apocalypse. I’d like to thank Mr. Herrick for his introduction in the previous post.

As was mentioned by Herrick, we met at what was, at the time, the biggest dive bar in New York City. It was also one of the few places where you could get a drink for any price close to reasonable. It was a haunt of mine mostly for the cheap drink and good people watching. The place was roughly the size of a live-in trailer and about as luxurious. The clientele generally consisted of punk rock kids and seasoned drunkards. Most of the Williamsburg hipsters stayed away from the place, though it was the bar where the Yeah Yeah Yeahs formed.

I was drinking a Corona out of a bottle (one of the two beers served there) and heard some guy in an ragged blazer ranting on about Wall Street and the collapse of the housing market (Note: This was back in late 2007). Most people were ignoring him in that way that New Yorkers do. I was a transplant in the city and could tell that he was, too. The city must have been taking a toll on him, I thought. Why else would he stumble in here?

We got to talking and drinking and found we had a lot in common. A general distaste of most things (especially in the Bush II years) bonded us. I was a nice, warming thing to meet someone like him a city that was both literally and figuratively cold.

We shared a joint outside after last call and Herrick mentioned that he was starting a blog. Good God, not another one of those, I thought. I was less warm to the idea as I was a writer for print and, like many at the time, I saw blogs as an enemy rather than a future. But I wished him the best in his efforts. I stumbled back north to the L-line, and then home. I never really expected to see Herrick again.

But here I am, broke as hell living in Oregon. It isn’t where I thought I would be, but there are worse things. Things have changed a bit: The Mars Bar closed down, we have a new (er) president, work is harder to find, the garbage island in the Pacific is bigger every day. I recently went to a dive bar off Broadway called The Half Time that boasts $1.75 tallboys of PBR. I’d found a new home.

And who was in the bar but that crazy bastard Herrick! We started talking a bit more and he told me once again about his blog. I’ve become more open to the idea, so I agreed to come on board. Why not? It’s not like I’m getting paid to do anything else…

So I’ll be joining you here for a while. It should be a blast.


Even Greater Idiocy From the Right: Will It Never End?


Sidney Allen Johnson in 1990 with what I can only assume was his fourteen-year-old crack whore at the time: "Victoria." I'm not making this up; it's all on his website at

It seems we haven’t heard enough from Sidney Allen Johnson (click on his name to check out his MySpace for reals), the subject of ridicule in the previous post. In response to his lambasting there, Mr. Johnson thought it would be in his best interest to post another even more offensive comment. This time, I thought it would be best to leave his full statement off of my blog and only include the parts which would not get my column banned from WordPress due to vulgar hate speech. Here those parts are:

“Defending Islam is a fools errand. No religion has killed more people, and they are equal opportunity killers… Obama’s vote total only proves how easily you left wing wackos are to deceive. You have voted for death… your own. Lets see: questionable citizenship, a socialist and a desire for a national security force under executive control. That worked out well in the 1930’s didn’t it!”

I wonder why Mr. Johnson’s George W. Bush brand of neoconservative politics didn’t get back into the White House with John McCain as its champion… Oh yeah, because these people make themselves look like idiots so I don’t even have to.

The Crusades, as invisioned by modern Christian quilters.

The Crusades, as invisioned by modern Christian quilters.

Look at the shit this shithead says: “No religion has killed more people”? Are you serious? Islam lost the Crusades, Johnson you dumb ass. Muslims may have killed a fair number of folks back in the Dark Ages, but who didn’t? You want to know what religion killed the most people back then, and continues to persecute others in any way it can today? I’ll tell you: hard-line “orthodox” Christianity!

I’m not even going to argue about that, though. I don’t have the energy. It’s really another post entirely; I promise to someday spend that time writing that post ripping Christianity a new arsehole, but for now I need to focus on ripping out other assholes: namely that of Mr. Johnson, who also claimed that President-elect Barack Obama has questionable citizenship and is a Socialist. Are you kidding?

Mr. Johnson would get along quite well with the bonafide retard who filed a Supreme Court case which alleges Obama is not eligible to become President because he is not a natural born U.S. citizen. I really hate to be the one that bursts Mr. Johnson’s bubble (wait, no I’m not), but Barack Obama was born in Hawaii and has a birth certificate from that state, and at least one of his parents was a natural born U.S. citizen themselves. That’s all you fucking need to become a fucking natural fucking born U.S. citizen, idiots! Stop arguing about this!

Since Barack Obama is now going to be the President, his birth certificate is a matter of public record and its really no secret. Nor is there any doubt that he has the fucking social security number for that matter. He wouldn’t have gotten this far without records, people.

By the way, the Supreme Court has agreed not to even hear the case in question because they all think its fundamentally retarded. And lets not forget that the current Supreme Court has a Republican majority, so the case must have been really bonkers if they had a chance to get rid of Barack Obama and they decided not to. Here is the fucking birth certificate if you still think I’m in on some nut job left-wing conspiracy:


By the by, look at that “controversial” little middle name there: Hussein. Yes, Barack Hussein Obama. Our President-elect’s middle name is Hussein, as in “Saddam Hussein.” Can you fucking deal with it already people?!?! Dear Constant Readers, can you believe that people were even asking Barack Obama if he would use his middle name during his inauguration? Of course he will! Every President ever has used their middle name in their inauguration!

The tyrant of Iraq himself in his final... and very pathetic... days.

The tyrant of Iraq himself in his final... and very pathetic... days.

Why wouldn’t Barack Obama use in his inauguration a common name in many parts of the world which means “handsome” or “good,” given to him by his father (a Kenyan, let me remind you) at his birth in 1961 before the more infamous Saddam Hussein ever came to power or even got out of prison?!?!

As for being a Socialist: John McCain saying Barack Obama was a socialist over and over throughout the campaign didn’t make him one, and Mr. Johnson saying it over and over again won’t have any greater measure of success. By the way, since “the Liberals” orchestrated their take-over plot by collapsing the economy and getting that 700 billion dollar bail-out through Congress (oh, wait… didn’t the G.O.P. have something to do with that?), we’re all Socialists now. I mean, our banks are socialized anyway… Next is health care… Bwahahahahahahaha!!! Victory for the Proletariat!!! (I’m sorry, isn’t that what you were expecting to read, Mr. Johnson you paranoid lunatic?)

As for a national security force under executive control, when the fuck has Barack Obama said he wanted another one of those? He already has a national security force under executive control: the fucking U.S. Military, Johnson you neanderthal. And that was created a hell of a lot earlier than the 1930’s. What the fuck are you talking about, Johnson?!

But let me get back to talking about colossally stupid financial bail-out plans: did y’all hear about this U.S. auto-manufacturer bail-out nonsense. The bail-out plan to rescue the troubled U.S. auto-makers from a financial ruin which would also leave millions of Americans jobless was just stalled in the Senate recently by a couple of vocal G.O.P. assholes. These motherfuckers said they couldn’t pass a bill which wouldn’t have “responsible” cutbacks in salary and wages for U.S. auto-workers.

The U.S. auto industry bail-out plan, as invisioned by the G.O.P.

The U.S. auto industry bail-out plan, as invisioned by the G.O.P.

What kind of “responsible” cuts would those be? Those auto-workers are blameless. It’s the fucking executives born with silver spoons in their assholes who don’t know how to run a company which are to blame, and they are the only people that should suffer in this whole equation. But as it stands, Republicans have proven once again that their lunatic leaders are assholes who want only to bring this country crashing down into a complete economic meltdown. Now we’re just hoping Bush will stop sitting on his hands and release some funds from the T.A.R.P. to ease the stress on the automotive industry and prevent its imminent collapse. And well all know how optimistic we should be about that since Bush has said he doesn’t want to do anything of the sort (though he has recently softened that stance to a lazy, “I’ll think about it in a few days after I finish shitting out this greasy kielbasa sausage…”). To sum up, the neoconservatives are trying to destroy the country before Obama can even take office. And if people don’t get off their asses, the neoconservatives might even do it.

I’m starting to get worried, people. We could lose about 3,000,000 more jobs before Barack Obama even has a chance to say the name “Hussein” during a Presidential Inauguration. We’re talking Second Great Depression time, dear Constant Readers. There are a lot of “ifs” there but nonetheless we should all be very careful in the coming months and be wary of assholes like Sidney Allen Johnson and his cronies.

It’s just as my good friend’s grandfather once said: “Basically, people are no damn good.” If we can all accept that one foundational truth of the world, we might come out of this mess okay.

H.J. Herrick Addresses Some Criticisms from a Traditional Gothic Heavy Metal Doom Rock Musician, and so on…

bwcrushomeI would like to address a comment left in response to my previous post by an idiotic ideologue (just click here to email the moron if you wish). The comment was left by one Sidney Allen Johnson (pictured at left; and no, I’m not kidding), who is the sole member of a band called the Babylon Mystery Orchestra. This “group” is self-described as “a blend of Gothic and Traditional Rock music with elements of Heavy Metal and Doom that produce that elusive result that so many artists strive for and so few achieve.” What would that be? Total shit?

Anyway, this Sidney dude’s Babylon Mystery Orchestra homepage proudly proclaims that he is personally at war with Muslims, Socialists, and a fictional secret society called the Illuminati. I know you probably think I’m just dreaming this up, but its all there in black and white (literally) on his web page. Just look for yourself. In any case, I will respectfully reprint Mr. Johnson’s argument in its entirety here:

“Two landslides for Bill Clinton? How did someone who did not get 50% of the vote either time suddenly qualify as a landslide winner? He benefited from third party candidates, without which he would never have been elected. Your attempt to rewrite history in your own image is laughable. You must have a college education. No one could have such a fantastically imagined, and distorted, view of the world without some coaching. Its always good to see someone on the ‘tolerant’ left rejoicing in the suggestion of the death of others…you’ll make a fine Muslim some day.

His message begins and you’re thinking, “Okay, he’s not that smart but he’s not totally insane,” but then the thing about me being a death-hungry Muslim arrives and you of course must conclude he is a racist asshole. Let me defend my position point by point…

First, I’ll point out that both of Bill Clinton‘s Presidential Elections (1992 and 1996) were landslide victories in this way if nothing else: both victories achieved a number of electoral votes which are widely considered to be landslide electoral college victories. Just click here to see a definition of “landslide victory” in which Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are specifically mentioned because of their wide electoral college victories. Yes, Bill Clinton’s popular vote left something to be desired because of Ross Perot, but you must still remember that he maintained a six to nine percent margin of victory over his nearest trailing opponent in both elections. Not to mention, in 1996 Clinton did win half of the popular vote (well, within one percent) and the rest was split between his two opponents. Dole, his nearest competitor was about ten percent behind in the popular vote. If 1996 isn’t then a popular vote landslide as well, I don’t know what is.

perotSecond, I’ll refute Mr. Johnson’s claim that Clinton wouldn’t have won without third party candidates stealing votes from George H.W. Bush and Bob Dole: People always blame Ross Perot (pictured at right) for taking votes away from George H.W. Bush and Bob Dole, but I really doubt those sad twisted people that voted for Perot ever would have shown up at the voting booth if the crazy Texan hadn’t been running. Besides, even if Perot did take votes away from Bush and Dole, he certainly took as many away from Clinton both times. After all, Perot may have supported economic Protectionism and opposed gun control, but he also supported a woman’s right to choose and the Environmental Protection Agency. He likely lured hesitant Clinton voters away as much as hesitant Bush and Dole voters. If you split the votes that went for Perot between Clinton and his opponents, he would have had popular vote wins by 53% to 46% and 54% to 44% in 1992 and 1996, respectively. That leads into Obama’s 53% to 46% victory nicely, I think. And just compare those numbers to Ronald Reagan‘s 1984 historic landslide victory, in which he won 58% of the popular vote against Walter Mondale‘s 40%. Riddle me this, Mr. Sidney Allen Johnson: at what point between Reagan’s “crushing” 58% and Clinton’s (adjusted) 54% or Obama’s (unadjusted) 53% does the popular vote stop being a landslide? Is Reagan’s lead over the others of four to eight percent (depending on how you look at it) really so much better?

Third, I’ll bring into question whether I am re-writing history: How the fuck is repeating a fact from a textbook definition in an encyclopedia entry re-writing fucking history? Landslide fucking victories are generally decided by a (approximately) ten percent margin of victory or more in a popular vote or a 65% or better electoral college victory. All three of the elections of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama fall into the low end of that category (as does George H.W. Bush’s first election to the Presidency, by the way). No, they are not the same kind of landslide enjoyed by a Ronald Reagan or a Franklin D. Roosevelt, but they are still pretty fucking big victories. By the way, I would like to note that more people voted for Barack Obama in 2008 (65,098,323) than did for Ronald Reagan in 1984 (54,455,075). In fact, more people voted for Barack Obama than for any other Presidential candidate in U.S. history. Deny that, you Doom Metal loving son of a bitch!

illuminati-haende-grFourth, I will confirm that I have a college education: Yes, I do have a college education. That’s how and why I can and do choose to think, learn and grow as a human being instead of declaring war on Islam and mythical secret societies (pictured; and no, once again, I am not making this up). I can only guess that the bitter scorn with which Mr. Johnson accused me of possessing a college degree (in fact, I have a B.A. and a Masters degree) indicates that he is not college educated. Yet again I seem to be confronted by the kind of person who laughs at the idea of learning anything beyond high school, and in the same breath manages to demonstrate their profound ignorance and bigotry, which brings me to my last point…

Fifth, I will deduce that Sidney Allen Johnson is a fucking racist prick and that he is in fact guilty of his own accusations of reality distortion. In the penultimate sentence of his comment, Johnson said, “Its always good to see someone on the ‘tolerant’ left rejoicing in the suggestion of the death of others…” First of all, I don’t ever recall describing myself as on the tolerant left, only on the left. Second of all, I wasn’t rejoicing at the suggestion of the death of others; I was rejoicing at the death of the ultra right wing foothold on power in America. And if I suggested that, “At least for the next four years, we can tell lunatic fringe right-wing conservatives to fuck off, eat shit and – most importantly – die,” as I did at the conclusion of my previous post, I hardly think I should have to feel bad about it.

trouble_on_the_right_wingWhy would anyone care if members of the lunatic fringe right wing conservative movement (pictured on the right, of course) died? Would the world be so much more terrible without Pat Robertson praying on national television for Supreme Court Justices to die? Would the world be so much worse without George Bush and his cronies fucking up relations with the entire planet except England and destroying our homeland? Would the world really be so much worse off if we didn’t have people like you, Sidney Allen Johnson, declaring war on an entire religion because you don’t understand that the actions of a few terrorists on 9/11 can’t be used to judge all Muslims any more than the outrageous actions and words of people like Jerry Falwell can be used to judge more reasonable and – yes – tolerant Christians like Barack Obama. I would also point out that Democrats and Liberals can’t be blamed for the things I say just because I agree with them most of the time.

I do not want reasonable and good people whom I disagree with to die, Mr. Johnson. I just want people like John McCain, Sarah Palin, Ted Stevens, George Bush, Karl Rove, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, you and all the rest to go far far away from me and the rest of the human race, because its lunatic fringe losers like you who leave the world a worse place than you found it. At least Muslims invented the first windmill in the 7th century, founded the first degree-issuing university in the 9th century and invented suntan lotion in the tenth century. That beats out Catholics. All they ever invented was guilt.

In Other News, H.J. Herrick Issues a Correction: Herrick’s Projections More Accurate than Previously Projected

Well, I was so right once again that my righteousness exceeded even my own expectations: it turns out my electoral vote count projection of November 5th was incorrect by one vote. Of course, Obama did even one vote better than I expected. As of today, the final electoral vote count is Obama 365, McCain 173.

1569234-welcome_to_nebraska-nebraskaHow could this have happened, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you: I called Nebraska (with the exception of three outstanding Obama counties: Saline, Lancaster and Thurston) for McCain, as did every other reputable news outlet on the planet (for once, I’m was in line with them). Then I called Missouri and North Carolina for McCain and Obama, respectively. It turns out I was right about those.

We know now that everyone was a little bit wrong about Nebraska. Lo and behold, Nebraska is one of two states (along with Maine) that does its electoral votes on a county by county basis instead of the usual winner-take-all method that most states use. This means that if enough counties vote for the minority candidate in Nebraska, the state can split its electoral votes between the two. Turns out some outstanding ballots in Douglas County, Nebraska got counted late and tipped the scales in favor of Obama there. This will cause Nebraska to cast one of its five electoral votes for Barack Obama, increasing his final vote count from 364, as I predicted, to 365.

Way to go, Nebraska. Keep living “the good life,” whatever the fuck that would mean in Nebraska.

The Morning After the Election: Waking Up in the Antichrist’s New America

05campaign1050_600Dawn has broken over a United States of America transformed. The world will never be the same as it was when we woke up on the morning of November 4th, 2008. This morning is a new morning, full of sweet promise for most and full of bitter defeat for the rest.

obama-anti-christ-3984-thumbTo think that in March of 2008 some crazy Christians started saying that Barack Obama was the Antichrist (crazy propaganda found on pictured at right) because he fit the following criteria:

  • He is a man (check).
  • He is in his 40’s (check, gotcha).
  • He will have massive Christ-like appeal (okay, I guess I can see that comparison; he is pretty popular).
  • He will deceive the nation with persuasive language (uh, did Obama ever lie once during the election?).
  • He will promise false hope and world peace and people will flock to him (um… correct me if I’m wrong, but neither candidate was running on a world peace platform, though I guess Obama did use the word “hope” during his campaign and people are sure as hell flocking to him).
  • He will be of Muslim descent (okay, argument over; you crazy Christian assholes lose; Obama is Christian and was baptized in the Trinity United Church of Christ in 1988; that means he is a reasonable Christian who wants to help people instead of destroy them like you).

With all of that religious swift-boating propaganda behind us, it’s 10:00 a.m. pacific time on November 5th, 2008 and the current electoral vote count is 349 for Barack Obama and 163 for John McCain. Two states – Missouri and North Carolina – haven’t yet been called by most respectable outlets, but I’m going to go ahead and call them…

missouriMissouri Goes to McCain

Missouri will go red with McCain bringing in 50% of the vote over Obama’s 49%. McCain is currently winning this state by only about 6,000 votes with 100% of precincts reporting, so they are counting carefully there. But I’m going to give McCain – who, let me remind you, has already lost – the benefit of the doubt and say he wins this state.

ncmapNorth Carolina Goes to Obama

I’m going to go ahead and call North Carlolina for Barack Obama. The President-elect is bringing in 50% of the vote in North Carolina compared to McCain’s 49%. Obama is currently up by about 12,000 votes in North Carolina with 100% of precincts reporting.

So what does that mean?

Well, I’ll tell you. It means I was right when I said a week before the election that Obama would win with 360 electoral votes to McCain’s 178 (well, almost; things went even a little better than I thought they would). With North Carolina going for Obama and Missouri going for McCain, that puts the final electoral vote count as follows:

Barack Obama   364

John McCain     174

I hate to be the kind of person who says, “I told you so,” but… wait a damn minute! I love saying, “I told you so!” I fucking told you so, America! Despite the fact that all my liberal friends and acquaintances were scared to death McCain was going to pull some kind of rabbit from his top hat in the final days of the election, I remained unafraid on the eve of the ballot count. While my friends and I sat down to watch the election coverage after a lovely Thai dinner, they were nervously buzzing before the television was turned on. Then, twenty minutes later – at 8:00 pm Pacific time – the election was called in Barack Obama’s favor as the results of Washington, California and my home state of Oregon came over the wires. It was only twenty minutes of election night angst for them before I could start dancing and screaming, “I told you so, motherfuckers!” And I had been smoking and relaxing since I’d gotten home from work, drinking coffee and beer. In other words, it was the most relaxing election night I’ve ever experienced, and the most gratifying.

obamaxa0The Implications of Having a Black Dude in the White House

A lot of people are wondering: what do the results of this election mean for America? Well, since I’m busy telling you what to think about everything else, I’ll tell you about that too…

America has finally proved that – while many of us are still racist assholes – most of us are (somewhat slightly) enlightened people who do not believe black people are inferior, and we really can’t get too grandiose and pretend this means much more than that. Racism still exists, and don’t let Bill O’Reilly, Pat Robertson or anyone else tell you different. ‘Nuff said there.

What about Implications for the Democratic and Republican Parties?

The real news is this: neoconservative Republican politics is dead and in the ground. After two landslides for Bill Clinton and a landslide for Obama, the country has said firmly for the past two decades that it is a left-leaning nation. Those two elections which George W. Bush won (well, sort of) by narrow pissant margins have today been revealed for what they are: flashes in the pan.

I compare the neoconservative victories in 2000 an 2004 to what scientists call an extinction burst: a sudden resurgence in a negative behavior or a viral infection before it burns out completely and disappears.

Am I saying that Republicans will disappear? No. I’m simply saying that the new Republican party cannot afford to let itself be run by evil dictators in disguise like the Bushes, who use people like Karl Rove to steal their elections. If the Republican party wants to survive in the future, it will have to change itself into a more palatable organization which accepts that they are in the minority and most Americans will disagree with them on all the issues that matter. In other words, Republicans have hit the wall and they will adapt into something we can all respect or they will eventually die and be replaced years from now by something like a Democratic monopoly or – holy shit – a system where Independent candidates can actually run for election in a major office and win.

erectgopHow do I know a Democratic shift is happening in this country and will continue to happen in the future? Well, I’ll tell you. As I said before in “Further Proof that McCain/Palin Supporters are Retarded…” trends show that more and more people will continue to become more educated, more intelligent, and will continue to register Democrat in greater numbers. Meanwhile, Republican supporters (pictured at left) continue to dwindle as time marches onward.

If all of that previous information isn’t enough to convince you, the National Student Mock Election, which just closed at 12:00 p.m. eastern time on November 4th, shows 64.12% of the popular vote going for Obama and only 32.31% for McCain. For those of you who don’t know, this mock election has students participating all around the country in high schools and middle schools, and most of its participants will be able to vote in the 2012 Presidential election. If I were a Democratic candidate in the next Presidential election, I would be pretty happy to know that two thirds of first-time voters will probably be registering Democrat.

To sum up, the American People have been fooled by Bush and his neoconservative friends before, but they were not fooled this year by neoconservative predators like John McCain and Sarah Palin posing as maverick house pets. As W. said…

Good work, America. Way to get a black guy into the Oval Office. Way to change history. Way to shove your collective boot up John McCain’s withered old ass. At least for the next four years, we can tell lunatic fringe right-wing conservatives to fuck off, eat shit and – most importantly – die.

A Night at the Movies with George W. Bush

If you look over a list of films by Oliver Stone, you begin to see a pattern: all of them are controversial, topical, relevant and brilliant (except for Alexander and World Trade Center; those were pieces of shit). Oliver Stone’s latest film, W., is no exception to the brilliance of his earlier career. He has fully redeemed himself for the terrible transgressions of Alexander and World Trade Center (god, the hours I lost watching those…). I’m just going to come out and say it: In W. Oliver Stone has made the most important film of his career and will probably never top it.

If Platoon and Born on the Fourth of July were critiques on the terrible machine of modern warfare, if Wall Street was a critique on the greed and corruption of the financial machine in this nation, if Natural Born Killers and Any Given Sunday are critiques on the twisted bent or utter irrelevancy of modern media, if Nixon is a critique of corruption in modern politics, then W. is an utter fucking slap in the face to George W. Bush and everything that has allowed his administration to happen. Wow, that was quite an “if, then” statement.

The most terrible tragedy of George W. Bush’s life and of our generation is that George W. Bush is actually a fairly likable guy when you meet him and just shoot the shit about football. Pretty much everyone who meets him in real life thinks so. That’s why the motherfucker got elected. How else do you think it happened? It’s not because he has good policies or is very smart, now is it? Anyway, enough of that tangent. Even Elizabeth Banks (playing Laura Bush), who met the Bushes once at a White House screening of Seabiscuit, said that while she utterly loathes Bush’s politics, she found him to be a very charming and funny.

I ate another special rice crispy treat before going into the theater on the opening night of W. and boy was I happy I did… The special treat allowed me to relax a bit, and thus relax my raging hatred of George W. Bush for a time. While my defenses were down, I was struck by Josh Brolin‘s rendering of George W. Bush as a confused young man who wants only to do right by his father (played gloriously by James Cromwell) but is constantly overshadowed by him and his brother Jeb. I’m just going to come out and say it: I felt sad and sorry for George W. Bush, the evil dictator himself.

That is to say, the film served as a reminder to me that I should passionately hate Bush the Politician and leave Bush the Man alone. Bush was not a villain in the film; he was a likable and charming young man who was turned into a likeable and hatable pawn in his autumn years by puppet masters like Dick Cheney (played hauntingly by Richard Dreyfuss) and Karl Rove (played by Toby Jones). No, this movie does not excuse Bush. His tragic flaw in this film is his total inability to finish what he starts or to think a course of action through before it ruins him. The movie merely reminds us that there are far more people to blame than just Bush alone for what has happened under this administration; this is where the villains like Rove and Cheney enter the story of W. and muck things up for our hero (?) by exploiting his tragic flaw.

Dreyfuss plays Cheney with a perfect level of private malevolence. In one of my favorite scenes, Cheney explains in a secret war strategy meeting how Iraq is just the first step in a leapfrog tactic to eventually capture Iran and its oil reserves, thus establishing a U.S. empire. Bush in that scene appears skeptical of Cheney’s ideas but eventually goes along with the plan after careful moral nudging from Cheney and others.

It’s in this way that the film begins as a biopic drama and then transforms into a tragedy of epic (Greek, even) proportions. By the end of the film, things are getting a little eerie as you are occaisionally reminded of Oedipus Rex.

What I’m trying to say is that this film is fucking powerful and you should see it. It is the only movie of its kind ever released during the term of the world leader it is about, making it probably the most topical biopic ever made. And on top of that, it will be talked about for decades to come, whether or not it does favorably at the box office. I give it five out of five Flaming Cocks of Justice or whatever (I should probably work on the rating system, huh?).

Anyway, check out the trailer and then go see the son of a bitch. Enjoy, dear Constant Readers.

“Them that begin by burning books, end by burning men.”

The Heinrich Heine Memorial, which lies near the gates of the cursed Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York.Those words come from now retired pen of the German journalist, essayist and romantic poet Heinrich Heine (1797-1856), and he should know something about the subject of censorship. Heine was born a Jew and converted to Christianity later in life (why, I’ll never understand). Because of this conversion (or transgression, depending on who you ask), his success was met with praise by some and derision by others. His works were censored and rejected by religious Jews so much so that when a memorial was built for him in Düsseldorf years after his death, certain people in positions of power blocked its placement. The memorial (pictured left) never saw the light of day until some rabid German American activists financed the transport and placement of the statue in – of all places – the Bronx, New York (you can see the shit pot itself in the background of the photo).

So where am I going with this tirade? I’ll tell you. I’m here writing as H.J. Herrick, but that’s not my real name. “So why would you need to use a pen name?” you might ask. And I would tell you, because the First Amendment right to free speech has become conditional in this country, where once it allowed anyone to say anything they wanted any time, no matter what. In Garcetti v. Ceballos (2006), the Supreme Court decided in a 5-4 decision (thanks to Samuel Alito – a G.W. Bush appointee – who cast the deciding vote) that “the First Amendment does not prevent employees [of the United States government] from being disciplined for expressions they make pursuant to their professional duties.”

As it happens, I am an employee of the United States government, and I once kept a blog that was in some ways similar to this one in which I said some so-called “controversial” things about completely rational members of our society such as Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson (pictured left).

Maybe I should have thought more carefully about my actions before speaking out against people like Pat Robertson, who prayed live on national television for more Supreme Court Justices to die so G.W. Bush could appoint more “family friendly” (his words) conservative Justices. Maybe I should have hesitated before lambasting Jerry Falwell when he said about 9-11, “…when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the Pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America, I point the finger in their face and say: you helped this happen.” Maybe Pat and Jerry aren’t all that bad, and maybe no one should speak up when they do things like that.

Yeah, right… fuck that. Those guys are infectious human waste, and every reasonable person on the face of the Earth knows that. The problem is that too many people on this cursed globe in this foul Year of our Lord 2008 are anything but reasonable. It was one of these assholes who found my old blog and complained to the Men in Charge about it. I found myself in the boss’s office being talked to by an intimidating number of Suits, and I was told that they couldn’t force me to take down the blog, but that if I didn’t they could make a recommendation for “termination” because of the controversial nature of some of my posts, and the fact that all government employees are held to a higher standard of public image.

Whatever. They wanted to suck Pat Robertson’s cock. Either that or they wanted to cater to the people that made the complaint, cowering in fear that an oppressed “minority” such as Christianity (the largest religion in the world with 33% of the planet’s population counted as card-carrying members; Islam is in a close second with only 21%) might protest their allowing an atheist like me to speak my mind. The fact that the human resources department at my place of work could dedicate enough time and man power to have a dozen employees print off every page of my blog (which was many hundreds of pages by then) and read over them carefully looking for any quote they could use against me in court should I decide to take it that route, is staggering.

Anyway, I didn’t want to deal with an extensive court battle about my Constitutional rights when those rights – I knew – had already been stripped of me by Garcetti v. Ceballos. I decided to cave into the man, and bide my time until I could begin again under a pen name, and take the fight to those swine with the written word all over again. So that is where you find me now. The only thing that protects me now is my anonymity: those two fake little initials and that German-sounding last name, Herrick, which means “war lord.”

I chose that name – Herrick – because war is what we are embroiled in today in America. I’m not talking about some conflict on foreign soil; I’m talking about the war of ideas that’s going on in our places of work, our homes, our schools, our businesses, our court houses, our fucking cafes and public swimming pools even. None of you are safe. None of you can avoid choosing a side. We live in a world that is being torn into two sides. One of them is imperfect, but at least tries to protect us from those that would take away our freedom. The other is actively trying to enslave us through fear under the illusion of democracy. If someone doesn’t speak out in this conflict, and if you don’t listen and think, we are all doomed.

After all, just as Herr Heine said, “Them that begin by burning books, end by burning men.” In more ancient eras, in some other countries today and perhaps even in the future of our own nation, I would not just have been threatened with “termination” or fired outright; I might have been put in prison, or dispatched in the street. If we are to stem the tide that threatens to drown us, we the oppressed must speak out.

We live in apocalyptic times: times in which the fate of society hangs in the balance and in which we hold the keys either to our own salvation or destruction. I’m not a religious person; I don’t believe there is any old fuckhead with a beard in the sky waiting to judge us. The only people who will judge us are our descendants, and we will be judged by them based on the world we leave for them. Heine also wrote, “Wild, dark times are rumbling toward us, and the prophet who wishes to write a new apocalypse will have to invent entirely new beasts, and beasts so terrible that the ancient animal symbols of St. John will seem like cooing doves and cupids in comparison.”

Truer words had never been spoken when they were put to paper in 1842 in the Augsberg Gazette. We live today in those wild, dark times Heine wrote about over 150 years ago. The Beasts that torment us are worst than dragons from the Pit; they are televangelists, Presidents, police and so-called journalists like Bill O’Reilly (on film flipping the fuck out, below). Their followers are sheep armed with ignorance and guns, and someone is giving booze to these goddamn animals (thanks for that line, Hunter Thompson; may you rest in peace).

Whether we come out the other side of this New Apocalypse clean or filthy depends on whether we stand for our principles now, before its too late. I’m issuing this call to all you Dear Constant Readers out there: speak up. Tell ignorant assholes they are ignorant assholes. Punch them in the fucking jaw. Talk to people who will listen to you about things that matter. Tell those people who have not chosen sides why they should choose ours.

And if you’re one of those swine who thinks a government employee shouldn’t be able to say Pat Robertson is a cocksucker in their spare time, then you should go out on your front lawn and eat a gun, you son of a bitch.

Some of you more moderately minded people out there may think that’s a bit harsh, but I’m not inclined to agree. I believe what Herr Heine said about forgiveness of one’s enemies (and these people are our enemies; make no mistake): “One should forgive one’s enemies, but not before they are hanged.” (I promise that’s the last Heinrich Heine quote for a while.)

I think I’ve said enough. Is this what they call a mission statement? Well whatever. Close enough for government work. I can feel those fuckers closing in on me. It’s time to take refuge in the back of some dingy bar and self-medicate. I’ll write to you when I’ve evaded my would-be captors, Dear Constant Readers. Fight the good fight! Kill Pat Robertson and I’ll pay you a million dollars! Two million for Falwell! (Wait, too late.)

I’ll catch y’all on the flip side. This is H.J. Herrick, signing off.