Monthly Archives: January 2013

On The Money; A Suit, a Cell Phone and a TV

On The Money;

Economics for the 99%

A Suit, A Cell Phone and a TV

suit cell and tv

According to the UN, in order to participate fully in American society, you need to have three things:

un

1, a suit, 2, a cell phone and 3, a TV set, which begs the question: Why would anyone in their right mind want to participate fully in American society? I own none of these things. I don’t miss them one bit, and I pity the poor people who have them. Think about it.

think-about-it-debbi-granruth

If you need a TV, I presume that you are expected to watch it too. That can’t be good for you. Don’t you have something better to do with your time in American society?

cat-makes-fun-of-your-television-show-selection

Then again, what can you do while wearing a suit?

dorcus sweat

You can pose for pictures. You can work at a desk. You can chat with other people wearing suits. You can walk a short distance, a couple of blocks or so, if it is paved, mowed, tiled or carpeted the whole way. You can watch TV, I suppose, and you can drink. If someone serves you, and you are very careful, you can eat, but that’s about it.

5322852-young-male-model-in-suit-speaking-on-phone-and-eating-bread

What can’t you do in a suit? Fix a car, build a house, paint, weld, cook, fish, hunt, climb a tree, hike the Appalachian Trail, have sex, mow the lawn, clean the bathroom, or pretty much anything else that you really need to do to survive, or would actually enjoy doing, you probably don’t want to do it in a suit.

Man in Suit Hiking

You cannot launder a suit. You must have it dry-cleaned. This costs money, and has the bonus of impregnating your clothes with toxic chemical residue, which you then breathe in, and absorb through your skin. Perchlorethylene, or “Perc” a ubiquitously used dry-cleaning solvent, causes cancer and acts as a powerful neurotoxin, so it makes you dumber before it kills you.

dry cleaning toxic

I imagine someone participating fully in American society, sitting there in front of the TV in their suit, poisoning body and mind, and then they pick up their cell phone.

C-Lockhorns-phone

I guess they use it to order food and have it delivered, or call their mechanic, or any of the other contractors who actually live their lives for them. Funny that the UN did not list “money” as one of the things that you needed to participate fully in American society.

man-phone-tv-computer-story-top

Really, if you have money, you don’t need a suit, you don’t need a TV and you don’t even need a cell phone. If you have enough money, you can afford to pay people to wear suits for you, make your phone calls for you and you can pay attractive and interesting people to sit on your own sofa and make idle chit-chat, so I really think the UN missed the boat on this one.

mediaburn

This is like saying that to participate fully in heroin addiction, you need a syringe, a spoon and a candle. No, if you are a heroin addict, you have a syringe, a spoon and a candle, but you need heroin. The syringe, spoon and candle are not going to help you get heroin. It’s only your sheer desperation and willingness to do anything for your fix, that gets you the heroin. That’s how you participate fully in heroin addiction.

12429628-recreational-drugs-cocaine-isolated-on-black-with-syringe

So it goes with American society. It’s only your willingness to do anything for money that makes you put on that toxic suit, and answer that blasted cell phone. The hypnotic glow of television is always there to absorb what little attention you have left at the end of the day, and insure that you never even imagine any other way to live. That’s what I’d call full participation in American society, and I pity anyone who does it.

PityTheFool


Do You Like My Tattoo?

Do You Like My Tattoo?

stupid tattoo game

I don’t know what to say to people when they show me their tattoos.

 pothead dolphin tatt

I have not yet seen a single design that I would want on my own skin, or any skin I was intimate with for that matter,

Worst-tattoos-Vagina

…but as a craftsman, I often look at a tattoo and think, “Wow, I’ll bet that would make a fabulous handbag.”

tribal-tattoo-designs

As a web humorist, stupid tattoos are manna from heaven.

 terrible-tattoos

They require nothing of me. I simply frame them.

 cows ass tattoo

I only put together The Journal of Homerotic Photography because the stupid tattoos demanded it.

 homer-simpson-tattoo

Likewise with my slide-show Misspelled Tattoos at Funny or Die. I’d like to think my clever captions keep it rated at +90% funny, but I know better.

 loveconcursall

Of course, while researching pictures for this short piece, I found enough new stupid tattoos to create a new slide-show.

 pigs-tattoos-14

For your edification, Ten Tasteless Tattoos at Funny or Die.

tounge-tattoo-tattoo-unusual-rerun-stupid-human-1293226563


Hello, My Name is Civilization, and I’m an Alcoholic

Hello, My Name is Civilization, and I’m an Alcoholic

 aa meeting bad start

OK, I’m going to squeeze an enormous idea into a short, not too boring essay. Try to hang with me on this. Civilization began with something called “the agricultural revolution”. That is, a fundamental shift from a hunting and gathering lifestyle, to a farming lifestyle. This farming lifestyle led to permanent settlements, which then grew into cities, and eventually, into the civilization we know today. The question is: Why did they do it?

 Why

To start, lets take a very long look at human history. According to fossil evidence, people just like us, have inhabited this planet for well over one million years. One million years ago, all humans lived in Africa, and all humans lived very much like the San Bushmen of the Calihari Desert live today.

 gudigwa-bushmen-hunting

The San are a “hunting and gathering” culture. They plant no crops. They tend no livestock. Instead, they hunt wild game and gather wild plants for food. They have no written language, but have a very rich oral tradition. Even though the San have been pushed into some of the most inhospitable land on the African continent, they only work about four hours a day to meet their daily needs. They rarely go hungry, and enjoy better nutrition and more food security than do the farming people who now surround them.

 ethiopia farmer

The San enjoy a lot of leisure time, which they spend telling stories, making music, dancing and playing games, among other things. They have a rich culture, and that culture contains over one million years of accumulated knowledge about how to live on planet Earth. That knowledge allows them to flourish in the middle of a desert, while the farming people around them, who have forcibly taken all of the good land, work long hours, suffer from poor nutrition, and often starve.

 hunger_ethiopia

But one million years ago, there were no farming people. All humans lived a hunting and gathering lifestyle, not unlike the San. Over the course of the last one million years, hunting and gathering humans spread out over Asia and Europe, and eventually even Australia and the Americas. This spread of humanity happened at a glacial pace, but by about 40,000 years ago, damn near every place on Earth that would support human life, was, albeit sparsely, inhabited by humans. This slow spread of hunter-gatherer culture gave rise to the vast diversity of sustainable human cultures around the world, from the Inuit to the Yanomami.

 yanomami tribe

40,000 years ago, humans lived all over the world, quite happily, as hunters and gatherers. I’m not saying that they didn’t have problems, or that they didn’t fight. They had problems, and they fought, but they didn’t destroy the planet. They didn’t overpopulate the planet. They didn’t overheat the planet, and they didn’t work 40-50 hours a week just to get by.

 overworked__1

So, the question is: Why, among the thousands of indigenous cultures around the world, did just one particular culture in the Middle-East, reject the collective knowledge of a million years of culture, and begin farming?

 hunters why

Farming is a lot of work, and not much fun. Compared to hunting and picking berries, plowing a field with a rock tied to a stick must have seemed quite tedious. Why did they do it?

 why farm half

If you’ve got plenty of food, which fossil records tell us they did, why would you plant wheat and barley? Even more perplexing: Why would they sacrifice the habitat of the game animals and wild plants that had sustained them for eons, to clear fields for wheat and barley?

 wheat-and-barley

That is what happened, by the way. One particular culture in the Middle-East took up farming, even though they had plenty of food, and then proceeded to farm so aggressively and so passionately, that they completely destroyed their own habitat. They wiped out all of the game animals and wild plants that they had relied on since the beginning of time. What was their motivation? What madness possessed them? What did they get out of wheat and barley that was worth destroying the world for?

 ur arial shot

The answer of course is BEER. Think about it awhile. Many indigenous hunter-gatherer tribes drink fermented alcoholic beverages on occasion, usually following an abundant fruit harvest, but the founders of civilization, sought to make drunkenness a daily, rather than an annual event.

beermaking

Addiction is a very powerful motivator.

aa_addiction

Yes, all of civilization is a dysfunctional adjustment made to support an alcoholic lifestyle. Don’t you think its time that we faced the fact that we have a problem?

alcoholism


The Ballad of Bobcat McKee

The Ballad of Bobcat McKee

 bob mckee

I heard Dennis Huber interview Bob McKee this morning on KMUD’s Monday Morning Magazine show. I listened mainly because Bob McKee sounded so much like Bobcat Goldthwait. I thought, “Man if anyone can make real-estate law funny, it’s Bobcat”, but the punchlines never came.

 bobcat goldthwait

No, the joke was on me. I was listening to the desperate, quavering voice of a millionaire real-estate developer, whining about the fact that he broke the law, then fought the county in court, at tremendous expense to the taxpayers of Humboldt County, and lost. Now he hopes to drum up a wave of popular sympathy that he can use to force the county to let him off the hook.

 off the hook bail bonds

I’ve heard Bob Mckee interviewed at length on KMUD, at least half-a-dozen times, but I never noticed how much he sounded like Bobcat, until today. Thanks to all of these shows, I know more than I ever wanted to know about The Williamson Act, the law Bobcat violated. It sounds like a stupid law, but it only applies to landowners with large rural holdings, totaling, what, 1% of the total population of Humboldt County?

 1 percent burns

Well, Bob, we have a lot of stupid laws in Humboldt County. Most of them only apply to poor people. Poor people get punished for violating stupid laws in this county, every hour of every day. Poor people get punished in this county, even when they haven’t violated any stupid laws, and the county gets away with it, because poor people don’t have six million dollars to spend on their own defense. I wonder why we don’t hear much about those people on KMUD.

 1 percent problems

Personally, I’m glad the county spent six million dollars of the taxpayers money to prosecute Bobcat, and I want them to spend whatever it takes to punish him for his stupid Williamson Act violations. I hope they seize all of his property, demolish his home, take his kids away from him and throw him in jail for it, just like they do to poor people around here every day. It would reassure me greatly to know that we have injustice for the rich, as well as the poor here in Humboldt County.

 cops beating w nightstick

While I have learned a lot about the stupid Williamson Act, thanks to all of the in-depth interviews on KMUD, and full page ads in our local papers, I haven’t seen anything that leads me to believe that Bob McKee did not violate the law. For all of your high profile, mostly bought and paid for, media coverage, Bob, you really haven’t made your case very effectively.

 make.your.case.

I know that Bob McKee has a lot of friends down here in SoHum. Every blood-sucking dope-yuppie around here talks about Bob McKee in glowing terms, because he sold them logged-over timber land at a price almost anyone could afford, and they got rich off of that land by flouting the law. Now Bob seems to be saying, “Hey, I helped you get rich off of your criminal behavior, now come help me get rich off of mine.”

 criminal behavior

It really amazes me how many of KMUD’s programmers have answered Bobcat’s call to action. Bud Rogers even immortalized Bob McKee in a song. That’s how fucking sick we are down here in SoHum. We sing folk songs about real-estate developers. Can you imagine Bob Dylan singing about a real-estate developer?

Ol’ Bob, he knew how to cut parcels in two.

He sold half to me and he sold half to you

The county, it said he had broken a rule

He spent six million fighting them just like a fool.

Now he wants you to come out and stand by his side

But I think they should just take it out of his hide.”

bob_dylan

Those aren’t the lyrics to Bud Rogers’ song, but you can imaging Bob Dylan singing them, at least I can. Musicians should save their folk songs for people who can’t afford to hire their own jingle writers. Really, artists need all of the paid work they can get.

 jingle writer

I know Bob McKee donates a lot to KMUD. I mean, it’s pretty widely known, and I have been there at the pledge drive when Bob McKee stopped by to make a donation (and talk about his case, incidentally), but the fact was not mentioned on Monday Morning Magazine.

 kmud

Dennis followed his half-hour interview with Bobcat, by badgering Humboldt County Supervisor, Mark Lovelace, with a bunch of loaded questions about, you guessed it, Bob McKee’s Tooby Ranch Williamson Act case, as though Bob McKee’s Tooby Ranch Williamson Act case was the biggest scandal in the county’s history.

 bob mckee tooby ranch

Bob McKee never made me a great deal on a piece of land, nor has he donated money to support this blog. No, my opinion of Bob McKee was forged when I heard him say, on KMUD, in an interview with Bud Rogers: “Well, you know, there’s a lot of poor people around here these days. I can’t do anything about that. I hate to tell people what they’ll have to pay for a piece of land these days.”

 Homeless-And-Cold

Guess what, Bobcat. I’d love to want to care about your stupid lawsuit, but we have a lot of stupid laws here in Humboldt County, and we have a corrupt, brutal and abusive county government. The streets of Humboldt County are full of victims of injustice and abuse, and there’s nothing I can do about it. I’d hate to tell you what I’d charge to write you a catchy jingle.

worlds smallest violin


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