Doing What’s Do-Able In Times Of #Trump And Too Much Freedom To Be Stupid

Believing in the power of knowledge has been a worst-mantra of mine for years. That’s probably why it’s so difficult for me to deal with the anti-intellectualism that has overcome my beloved & missed #Americant. I mean, what else could get a man like #Trump so far in this life? Or do you actually believe that intellect has something to do with all this idiocracy and reality-tv nation mis-state-hood? Wait. Did I just kill my own worst-question there? But on that note, I digress. For today’s worst-post deals with my most recent read. That’s right, dear worst-reader. I read this book last night and early this morning and enjoyed it thoroughly. Perhaps you can too–if you can still get it. (Btw, most recent search in online book store from hell shows it to be out of print but available as a used book.) Oh. And before I forget, pay special attention to the captions of two of the pics included above.

Rant on.

-T

PS And no! I’m not the one selling the book used on online books store from hell.

Julius Caesar Killed With (Bad) Ideas Not Daggers–Just Like My Beloved #Americant

ides of march and coffee

Coincidence? I finally (it’s been on my to-do list for a while) started re-reading Thornton Wilder’s Ides of March… in March? Actually I started re-reading it the last few days of March and casually finished it at the end of April. Reason? I had put it off long enough–and it was time. For I knew, dear worst-reader, after #Trump was elected there would be new & improved worst-criticisms galore–don’t you know–relating to certain aspects of human history. And so. Toilet literature moments of worst-writer have been revealed. Which means I finally got around to finishing the book by the end of April. Indeed. The little things in life that motivate, resuscitate, intrigue are worth taking with a grain of salt-sugar as life goes flush-flush, swirling, heralding down that sewer–that sewer meant for me.

The worst-thing about the Ides of March is this: I’ve always been fascinated with Julius Caesar and I’m not sure why. Same goes for Napoleon–and the reason for that is even more confusing. Even though I’m not much of a history buff–on account of the way History has been mis-taught–a few parts of it do kinda stick out (in my worst-mind) and fascinate (me). With that in mind, I could give a hoot about Julius Caesar–the man. What does interest me, though, is to read about why so much of the limited, one sided, agenda driven history we’ve been taught, so often and so easily, comes back to haunt us toot-suite (idiom error) and it all seems to coincide easily with what’s already happened.

Here’s the short answer/reason worst-writer thinks Julius Caesar is (and should be) part of the history that is happening right now. After President Stupid was elected in my beloved (and missed) #Americant in 2016, I recall reading about a New York play production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. In that play Caesar was dressed up to look like–hair, suit, tie n’all–Donald Trump, aka President Stupid. (Interwebnet search: “julius caesar as donald trump” and look at the images.) Even though I consider President Stupid an abomination and deserving of the treatment he receives from Lefties and humans with half a brain, I immediately wondered why all the coverage from that particular NY play was only about the bloody death of #Trump looking like Julius Caesar. (Wait. Scratch that last statement. Reverse its ending). Don’t/can’t people understand that Julius Caesar by Shakespeare has a lot more to offer than just the bloody death of a lingering, sleeping, lazy, precursor to this/our world of tyranny? But I digress.

It’s been a while since I read the play. In fact, it’s now on my to-do re-read list–especially after trying to absorb The Ides of March which ultimately brings me back to Julius Caesar–the play. The only problem is, I might have to track down that guy from Bielefeld who I lent my only English copy of Julius Caesar. That’s right. He never returned it. Aghast! Nomatter. I still have a college anthology English literature book or two that is sure to have the play. So I’ll get to it soon enough. Also. It’s a big regret of mine that I’ve never actually seen the play on stage. Back in the day (when I was young) I had a list of Shakespeare plays to see (before the day comes that I turn into bitter worst-writer and stop going to the theatre). Yeah. Unfortunately I never saw Julius Caesar on stage. Oh well.

The one thing I recall about reading Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar that connects to Donald Trump being president of the land-of-free-to-be-stupid has nothing to do with his death. Shakespeare recreated the politics and human behaviour that not only gives us Julius Caesar but also taketh the man away. Put another way. The factions of politics, the believers of the Gods, the Senators, the wives, the wealthy, etc., etc., are a perfect depiction of human behaviour that still goes on today. Obviously Shakespeare–and, as I’ve recently learned now Thornton Wilder–saw all this vividly. I’m just wondering if Thornton Wilder saw it all through Shakespeare?

Coming back to what I worst-wrote at the beginning of this worst-post. I don’t believe History should be taught as a single curriculum. Instead, we should learn history as we learn other more important things. You know, we should learn things that help us think, help us teach ourselves to learn. You know, like reading, writing, science and, what the hell, studying the mechanics of politics. So. Is it possible that Thornton Wilder thought the same when he embarked on writing The Ides of March? I mean, for the life of me, why would anyone come up such a creative and entertaining take on the life of one of human history’s most notorious tyrants? But then again, if my question has even an ounce of validity… I’m more than tickled as every college sorority girl in spring time who can afford plans to win the lottery of fraternity brothers galore where tall, dark and handsome square jaw lines and eyebrows raised to prove the fear their mothers taught them have been right all along. It’s all about the end and never the means. Or. Put another way: In this day & age of #Trumpism and grabbing things by the pussy: you go girls! And so. The only thing missing from Wilder’s letter novel is a few more details on Cleopatra, the Rome visiting babe. But before I get too far off subject.

Yes. This worst-post is supposed to be about Thornton Wilder. But I’m not doing such a great job on that. Instead, I’m worst-wondering right now how much brilliance a man can possess to be able to turn out a historical novel like The Ides of March? This book will probably not leave my side for many years to come. It not only has few spelling errors but the whole idear of encasing such a historical event in letters written between those that made the event happen…? I know. I know. This is what an epistolary novel is supposed to be. But where the heck did Wilder get so much out of history to put this book together? From some history class? I think not!

Obviously it couldn’t have been Shakespeare alone that drove Wilder to write The Ides of March. Reason? Some of the letters of this novel come from pre WW2 western world politics. Specifically, some of the letters are supposed to come from Mussolini’s fascist playground of Rome, i.e. the Rome that is a bit closer to what we all know today (geographically). Oh yea, baby. At the least people should be required to read The Ides of March only to see how a brilliant mind can work shit out as though there’s no need for fake newz, faux newz or profit margins being evaluated before anything has ever even been done.

We’re living in times where millions upon millions of people who watch WWE also stand by the election of an abomination to the highest political office the world has ever mis-created. The Ides of March is welcome read to help one gather thoughts about a world of worst. Or maybe not.

I am somewhat taken aback at how good The Ides of March is, especially since I read it many years ago but seem to have misplaced what I read in the confines of my dark-mind. Why isn’t The Ides of March part of study in ALL school systems? I mean, it doesn’t matter if this is a pseudo-history or if Julius Caesar is only a caricature for what so many men have desired to become. What matters is the depiction of all that is wrong in human nature–which seems to be what this world is all about. It’s as though Thornton Wilder lays out for us effortlessly an easy-to-read soap-opera-like novel in the form of letters sent between neighbours of all sorts–like the ones next to you. And even though Wilder complicates things by interjecting and mixing up those letters, especially chronologically, it doesn’t matter. The feeling that you’re reading a story someone is able to piece together with a brilliant mind, with brilliant intent, is worth every moment. Human nature hasn’t changed one bit–according to Shakespeare and Thornton Wilder. And that’s the crux of what people misunderstand in these days of selfish, beguiled confusion about money, greed and pussy-grabbing galore.

Rant on.

-T

How I Subverted The Sedition Act (Of 1918) Or Re-Read Chris Hedges’ “American Fascists”

American_Fascists

Thoughts after first read of this book here.

Obviously I’ve subverted nothing. I mean, come on. How can worst-writer, leader of the uselesseater union of the world and advocate for forced early retirement (as long as the women-folk and their feminism pay for it), subvert anything? Unless, of course, subversion is defined by how one throws stale German Brötchen against an unfurnished wall in order to measure the velocity of freshness. But all über-seriousness aside.

There has been another exuberant display of bat$hittery in my beloved #Americant. The display, for whatever worst-reason, made me re-read Chris Hedges’ book. The exuberance? A nineteen year old pre-perpetual man-child, i.e. a teenager with an AR-15, is yet another example of growing up in consume-to-survive meaninglessness run amok. Never before has born-to-die been so obvious. It’s what #Americant provides. Nothing. Nothingness. Nothing else. And then death by an almost cult following of the act of killing. Considering future perspectives of so many man-children and their trigger fingers, the new measurement of achievement in their useless lives corresponds to under-achievement. Which raises this question: what’s it like to live in a cult-of-death run by Haves so spiteful towards Have-Nots? Or. Put another way. The only way a man in #americant can find meaning is if he subjects himself in a slave-like manner to the whims of both biology and greed. Biology and greed, if you don’t know, are the main ingredients of mindlessness and/or WWE-TV.

Enter Religion.

When I refer to a nineteen year old, I’m obviously referring to the latest mass shooter in my beloved #Americant. As usual, the dumbed-down voting populace of the united mistakes of #americant will be no better informed about WHY these types of killings take place so it really means little to go beyond there being a nineteen year old with a military-grade weapon who can run around like all deplorables should. I, for one, am still asking questions about what the hell happened at the last mass shooting in Las Vegas. Not many answers there. And so. We’re all deeply ill-informed about HOW-WHY these things happen. Yet we are overwhelming informed about AR-15s and the fatness of Kim Kardashian (she is so disgusting looking I’m worst-surprised I could type her name). Btw, it’s never about how one can buy an AR-15 or gluttonous ammunition or extended magazines, etc. Nea. It is about something else. Go figure. But I digress.

“The decline of America is described as the result of the decline of male prowess.” -Chris Hedges, American Fascist

I guess I decided to re-read American Fascist because, well, criticism of the political right is the only way I know how to deal with this stuff. Indeed. After every mass shooting I blame republicans because of how they’ve perverted conservatism. I mean, I hated conservatism back in the day of W. Buckley. But at least Buckley & Co. weren’t totally bat$hit. Of course, without Buckley & Co. there wouldn’t have been Dubya & Co. and now President Stupid Comb-Over. Also. I don’t blame republicans because they’re the easiest to blame–especially when it comes to the free-for-all of mass shootings. I blame then because they are sore winners of the worst type. And when I say “winner” I mean winning in the race to the bottom. Congratulations, suckers.

Religion loves all.

For those stuck in the world of #americant bothsiderism, i.e. blaming both the Democrats and Republicans as equals for #americant’s ills, there is no rational discourse. These are the people who would like to be republican but are unable at a minimal level to see through all the craze. I suppose bothersiderists have speck of rational thought left–I’ll give them that. Yet, when I question bothsiderists I’m invariably faced with the issue of religion. Specifically the perversion of religion–which is best exemplified in my beloved (and missed) #americant through eyes of utter terror and fear and an ice-cream cone filled with pistachio banana chocolate and briefly named Daisy by the child carrying it. With that in mind, three things seem to intertwine in my worst-writer brain when I search for the blame.

  • Money
  • Power
  • Religion

Pretty simple list, eh? Keep in mind that the above list is not in any particular order. Also, obviously, the other side of the political spectrum lusts after the elements in the list, too. The difference, though, is that in my lifetime taking each one to new, higher levels via über-greed is the result of so much complacency or, as I like to put it: consume-to-survive. Of course, in the context of this post, the only item from the list that is truly relevant, and that which drove me to re-read this book, is religion. Not unlike the radicalised issue of abortion (or forcing women to be subjects of wannabe men-Gods), these people are not different than a mob with torches trying to hunt down a monster they don’t understand and will kill everything to get to it.

And so.

The man-boy that shot-up the school, killing seventeen of his peers, obviously wasn’t near money or power. But he was very and most certainly near religion. Now, I’m not saying that he was religious. I have no clue if he was or not. It’s just that when you don’t have money or power (or even if you do) then all that’s left for you is belief, faith, blind-will. To me, these mass shootings are all intertwined with the three elements listed above as utilised by men-boys who govern. When considering all the hate I feel for right wing politics, religion is the one that gets under my gander the most and it should not be given a free-pass just because someone saw a painting of a bloodied Jesus standing with a slit-throat lamb.

“Fundamentalism is the religion of those at once seduced and betrayed by the promise that we human beings can comprehend and control our world. Bitterly disappointed by the politics of rationalised bureaucracies, the limitations of science, and the perversions of industrialisation, fundamentalists seek to reject the modern world, while nevertheless holding onto these habits of mind: clarity, certitude, and control” -Karen McCarthy (as quoted in American Fascist by Chris Hedges.)

I’m betting that the WHY of these shootings is being systematically suppressed because the powers-that-be know full well that if words gets out about the true state of affairs of a once great nation that has so many mass shootings there will be mayhem of an apocalyptic scale never seen before–but wished for by religious $hitbags. Just read the last chapter of the New Testament. The difference to Biblical apocalypse, though, will be that the rich will finally have to pay. That is, Money and Power are tolerating Religion right now because the latter provides a brilliant filter, screen, airport security check–for the masses of Deplorables #Americant has become. For you see, dear worst-reader, by controlling the story, the narrative of a world where EVERYTHINGISWRONG, you control the meek, i.e. Deplorables.

“Since life has a way of not respecting these artificial lines, since ambiguity, inconsistency and irrationality are part of human existence, the only way believers can push forward is to pretend that these troubling aspects of our internal and external reality do not exist. They create a parallel reality, one that allows them to escape from reality-based world into world of their own creation.” -Chris Hedges, American Fascist

When you live a life of EVERYTHINGISWRONG where do you turn when the guns start slinging? Money. Power. Religion. You pay your money. You subject yourself to power. You fall for the Deity standing above you with his shinny halo and birch leather seat and a cock the size of your best mind. He tells you to contribute to his church and you do so. You reach in your wallet, digging into the forest within and you find a small toy out of your childhood that reminded of how things once were. How simple they were. Of a time when ice-cream didn’t feel so bad after it was consumed and excreted. The world you’ve created in your hiding place isn’t enough so you go deeper. Your wallet is big enough, it is empty enough. The green forest now brown within is a lost place and when you go to the next window to ask for direction you meet another salesman who tells you your credit cards aren’t full yet. So you switch from your wallet to your credit card. The forest within isn’t as greedy but it is as blinding. And the next methamphetamines fix is good.

“The hierarchy fears romantic love. Love, especially eroticism, in its most passionate, romantic form, threatens the iron control of the church leader. In Freudian terms, romantic love allows the id or the “it,” to be unleashed in a drive to satisfy uncontrollable passions. Restrain and self-control over these desires and passions are disarmed by romantic love.”. -Chris Hedges

I know it make no sense to go in this direction, but one thing that really struck me from my first reading of this book was Chris Hedges POV of love. Through out the book he refers to the act of love as an extension of God but also of people. He writes about how his father was accepting of gays and how homosexuality is not something to fear. I got the feeling that true love is embedded in Hedges’ religion as means of acceptance and tolerance. What a nice thing, eh! Indeed. Love. The way it should be treated/used/accepted. Of course, if one spent any time at all with deplorables, one also knows the vehemence against gays or even a wrong look at one’s wife. The insecurity of sexuality is rampant among conservatives. It’s as though Biblical fig leaves have become brain cells. And so. Perhaps there is a fourth element, sexual repression, that should join Money, Power, Religion. But for now I’ll leave it out.

Rant on.

-T

Links:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sedition_Act_of_1918

What Happens When You Cross Dorian Gray With The Devil Wears Prada? Worst-Writer’s Thoughts On Emma Tennant’s Faustine.

IMG_3859

The only problem worst-writer has with this wonderfully imaginative novel about The Feminine is how, if it were a quilt, it would be sewn together with a single thread. That thread, unfortunately, is the opposite of The Feminine. I suppose, if pushed to answer what that opposite (thread) is, I’d have to say this book is not exactly about women. Ironically–or not, very few men play a role in this book, except, of course, the antagonist–who only appears at the very end. In other words, this might just be a book about questioning womanhood post ca. the 1950s. But don’t quote me on that. Wait. Hold a sec.

Women and The Feminine are two different things. Right?

According to her Wiki post, Emma Tennant uses magic and mystery in her work. I was disappointed how neither really played a roll in this book. Even though Tennant brilliantly integrates the Faustian bargain into the story, instead it is really written with a quilt in mind. And that is rather confusing to me. Feminising Faust just doesn’t seem like a worthwhile endeavour–even though Tennant writes with excellent craftsmanship. I’m saddened to say that this story tries to deliver something but in the end all there is–is all that’s ever been: predestined, self-perpetuating social norms and gender roles that so many have embraced since Biblical apples galore. Nor is this book very entertaining. And that’s why I love it and plan to hold it dear for the foreseeable future.

Indeed. The feminisation of Faust. Is that enough for a book of this sort? A chick selling her soul to the devil, in and of itself, could be a huge mystery–or even a great piece of magic. Yet there is only reference to a beauty farm that manages to change a grandmother into a rival for her daughter’s lover. Then there’s a TV repair shop with back room. Like so many other places where women choose to go in their world of wanton patriarchy, we get nothing from Tennant about it–or darkened backrooms. It is here that the author tears clear from magic and mystery and instead goes off on a soap-opera-like tangent–which is probably best palatable to the author’s taste. But then again, if asked whether or not she’s a feminist, this book would make me answer: she is not.

On the other hand, if, like me, you’re the least bit curious what goes on in the mind of a woman (and you’re a man) that has nothing to do with the act of procreation or porn-like good-fucking, this book might be for you. Also. I can’t help but feel that faith (or is it destiny) had this book waiting for me at exactly this moment in (my) life. The reason for that has something to do with the #MeToo movement, Harvey W., and desexualising everything to the point of it being so uninteresting that it’s interesting (again). But I digress.

The writing in this book is brilliant. That can’t be said enough. It is truly a work of art chiseled out of a raw piece of… dare I say… feminine granite. It also reminds me of a combination of Oscar Wild’s Dorian Gray and the film The Devil Wears Prada (or M. Streep in that movie). Even though it takes Tennant almost two-thirds of the book to get to the point she’s trying to make (about feminism), the thing that kept me reading it wasn’t what she was writing about but how she writes it. There is much to learn from Emma Tennant.

Rant (and read) on.

-T

Pseudo Book Review Of “Fire And Fury” Or If Only There Was More Space Between The Lines

scary author pic
Are you serious with this pic on the back of your book, Mr. Wolff? (Taken with iPhone6s directly off back cover.)

Books with scary pictures of authors on inner or back covers should be avoided at all costs. I suppose that goes for worst-writers, too. At least that’s what I used to tell myself–about real writers that actually get paid to write stuff. With that in mind, hats off to you Mr. Wolff. Which brings me to this worst-question: did Michael Wolff pick the pic (above) for the back cover or did some corpo automaton pick it for him? Answer: Nomatter.

Just don’t let you kids near this guy–or President Stupid.

And by-the-buy, I didn’t buy this book. Never in my wildest thoughts did I ever seriously consider even going near this book. What can one read about President Stupid that one hasn’t already had stuffed down his/her throat with gulps of desperation? Either that or one can just watch some moronic TV, preferably WWE or reality-tv, and one can be just as informed. And that’s not all. One can also watch redneck, white trash #americant. Indeed. Watch it or read it. For between the lines of this book might just be a chronicle of the end of the beginning… Or is it the beginning of the end? Nomatter. At the least Wolff is a damn good writer.

I mean, he can spell and he knows how to use some big words. Or maybe not.

Kudos to my son for gifting me this book for my birthday. It’s his thing, don’t you know. I mean, gifting books during gifting season. As best as I can tell he’s mostly only gifted me, his stepmom and his mother, books. Wait. He gifted some bath oil to my better-half recently. So I could be wrong. Jeez. He’s twenty now. I don’t really know what he’s up to anymore anyway, what his motivations are, youthful prodigy confusion, etc. Yet he gave me a book that he should be reading. Yes. This book is for the youth of tomorrow. For those who would see how things shouldn’t be. Oh my. Confusion. Ditto. Confusion.

Let me begin this pseudo-review with some outtakes.

  • Chapter 20 (about The Mooch): “He had paid as much as half a million dollars to have his firm’s logo appear in the movie Wall Street 2 and to buy himself a cameo part in the film.”
  • Chapter 19(a): “Donald Trump’s sons existed in an enforced infantile relationship to their father, a role that embarrassed them, but one that they also professionally embraced. The role was to be Trump’s heirs and attendees. Their father took some regular pleasure in pointing out that they were in the back of the room when God handed out brains. Their sister Invanka, certainly no native genius, was the designated family smart person, her husband Jared the family’s smooth operator.”
  • Chapter 19(b): “The real swamp is the swamp of insular, inbred, incestuous interests (of Washington DC).”
  • Chapter 16: “In presidential annals, the firing of FBI director James Comey may be the most consequential move ever made by a modern president acting entirely on his own.”
  • Chapter 13: “The world of the rich is, in its fashion, self regulating. Social climbing has rules.”
  • Chapter 8: “It became almost immediately clear that the common purpose of the campaign and the urgency of the transition were lost as soon as the Trump team stepped into the White House. They had gone from managing Trump to the expectation of being managed by him–or at least through him and almost solely for his purposes. Yet the president, while proposing the most radical departure from governing and policy norms in several generations, had few specific ideas about how to turn his themes and vitriol into policy, nor a team that could reasonably unite behind him.”
  • Chapter 7 (on how money laundering works): “One way the process can work is, roughly speaking, as follows: an oligarch makes an investment in a more or less legitimate third-party investment fund, which, quid pro quo, makes an investment in Trump.”

Chapter 7 is a particularly interesting chapter. It contains five theories on Trump’s Russia collusion which is, probably, the most significant aspect of Trump–other than his regime increasing the US debt to new highs. Of course, dear worst-reader, I read the book in February 2018. The book doesn’t really contain anything new as its content pretty-much ends around the fall of 2017. With that in mind, it does feel like the book is the script from which all news is being reported now. Yet some of it kept me almost enthralled.

This book is, at best, a well chronicled history of the first six months to a year of President Stupid and more importantly President Stupid’s… Trump-ism. If you are anti-Trump then you can easily stomach this book. If you’re pro-Trump this book doesn’t matter because, well, like Trump, you probably don’t read anyway. Also, Wolff does a good job of hiding his biases in this book. Yet when one watches him try to sell it on tv or when he appears on the Interwebnets, it might not be so obvious if he is anti-Trump. Oh how the appearance of being objective might help sales. Except, of course, for the child molesting pic he put on the back cover of this book.

Anywho.

Even though I did find myself struggling through chapters here and there, skipping huge parts of Wolff’s attempt at making something interesting that obviously isn’t, I’d recommend this book. Reason? Trump is literally a projection of not just a weak, spoiled mind, but also of an America that is just as rotten. I mean, come on. How else could such a person get elected? And I’m not sure that was Wolff’s intention. This is certainly no prize-redeeming piece of work. Indeed. Wolff has done nothing more than chronicle a huge $hitshow. And he’s done it fairly well.

Good luck suckers.

Rant on.

-T

Hey Comrade! My School Of Greed Is Gonna Kick Your School Of Greed’s A$$

capitalism crisis deepens richard wolff

In order to cope with the two Ms (monotony & mendacity) of growing up in Suburban Hell of my beloved #Americant, I participated–at the duress of my broken family–in two organised sport activities. One of those activities was tennis. And, if I recall correctly, I was actually ranked within the top-100 players of my state during the tennis season of which I participated. Of course, let it be known, I couldn’t serve worth a hoot. Yet I was “ranked”. Yea, that says a lot about organised sports back then–long before the inheriting, under-achieving classes came to be what they’ve become and thereby given us #Trump. But I digress.

The second sport I participated in was Football. And I don’t mean football of the round ball kind. I played American football–where the ball is the proper shape. The reason for the shape? When that ball flies through the air it is either a bullet or a duck–and you better know what you’re doing when it comes your way. And so… There is clarity in (some) sports, dear worst-reader. That clarity is in how a ball can fly like a bullet through the sky.

Although I did participate in a few other sports here and there, e.g., lacrosse, baseball, wrestling, fencing and girls, football is the one that stands out the most in my worst-memory. Ask me if I regret wasting my time on it, I do. Then again, the sport did teach me a bit about participating with others in a so-called “team”. It really is a shame how my beloved #Americant (sport) and her cult of the entrepreneur (the team) have warped the idear of the game in recent years. “Team” for me had a different meaning once. That was the only thing worthwhile about playing football. No a total waste, that is.

Now get this: I learned a few other things while playing American football. For example, my coach used to tell us when we were doing the cardio portion of our daily practice–and we watched those soccer guys in the field next to us run like gazelles all day–that soccer is a game for communists. Can you believe that, dear worst-reader? Here’s how you teach youngsters–back in the day:

Whaaaa’ da heel kaind ah spo’art is it anywho if’n you caint use yer damn hands? It’s a communist spo’art, I tail yee. Dats zackly wha’ it eezz. Damn darn communists! -My Coach

My coach added something about balls shouldn’t be perfectly round anyway. “Nothing is perfect. Check your own,” he said. Of course, being the prepubescent worst-writer I was, during the last two years of wasting mind and body playing football, I actually believed that soccer players were communists. Heck, when I approached some of the guys on the soccer team, I would even ask them:

Say, Comrade, hoist any sickle and spades lately?

But. Again. I digress.

All this worst-talk about communists brings me to my latest read. It is a book by Comrade Richard Wolff. Comrade Wolff is a “professor of economics”. Comrade Wolff has a somewhat interesting presence on the Interwebnets, too. Much of his work can be found at http://www.democracyatwork.info and he even has a monthly podcast called Economics Update where he talks about all things-worst (man to occupy my heart) in this world of capitalism run amok.

At first I didn’t think much about reading this book. There was/is enough of/from Comrade Wolff online already. But then something he said itched me. That itch was Wolff’s academic POV of all-things economic. Better put, he writes and talks a lot about economics as though… Now hold a sec. Get ready for it. Sit down if you got a weak ticker.

Comrade Wolff talks about economics as if it is science.

Now. Did you get that? Let me repeat it just in case, dear worst-reader. According to worst-writer, economics ain’t no science. Instead it is (should be) an academic field within The Arts. But let’s not get too far off the issue of what itches me.

There is one topic that Comrade Wolff keeps comping back to over and over: He is obsessed with the pseudo economic science of Greece and Germania. That’s the real reason I broke down and bought this book. It’s also the reason I read it over a two month period. It’s not that it is hard to read. It is. It’s just that it is boring, too. Boring as boring can be. Boring as wrongly placed academia can be. But then again, so too are all things that try to be scientific that should instead be artsy. And guess what happened after I finally finished the book? Comrade Wolff’s obsession with Greece and Germania is still a mystery to me. Gosh darn it! I hate it when I pick the wrong friggin book!

Allow me to summarise my issue (itch) with Comrade Wolff’s obsession. Comrade Wolff says that Germania is a locomotive. He also says that Greece is a caboose. In case you’re unaware, the caboose is at the back of a choo-choo-train. A caboose is a special, single car that in olden times served as a kind of housing facility for those who worked on the train as it crossed landscapes. And so… Germania is the front of the train and Greece… Well, ok, you get the metaphor.

Btw, if you were to ask me why I expatriated to the EU my third1 most important reason for doing so would be because of the fascination of witnessing the catastrophe that is an effort to unite something that should never be united as though it were a train crossing some heartily confused landscape. Either that or I am a freak for Schadenfreude?

In #Eurowasteland where the choo-choo-train metaphor can only go so far, that which determines everything… Is the fcuking caboose. -worst-moi after living in this Euro shithole for the last 25 yrs.

Now wait a sec. Comrade Wolff says it another way. Here, try this (pseudo-paraphrase):

The #Eurowasteland caboose is literally a fcuk machine that rides the train. The train is made up of voyeur, perverted nation-states that like gawking at the fcuk-car from the back. And who’s the biggest voyeur of them all? That’s right…

Fcuking Germans!

In his podcast Economic Update I’ve listened to Comrade Wolff lambast the Germans because Greece is an economic disaster. That is, Greece is a disaster, according to Wolff, because of the Germans. IMHO, Comrade Wolff is wrong. Greece’s problems have nothing to do with Germans. Greece has problems because of Greeks. Comrade Wolff likes to focus on banks and bankers and how they take advantage of European pions–all of which is lead by dastardly Germans.

Whaaaaaa?

Worst-writer’s explanation of the Greece problem is much simpler–and much clearer. To paraphrase the great oral tradition now being propagated by #Americants in the form of #Trump: Europe is a shithole and it’s full of shiteaters.

That’s Greece’s problem.

In order to understand Greece and thereby the entirety of #Eurowasteland, aka, Greedland, all one has to do is look at what Europe has given the world. From the Bronze Age to the Renaissance and beyond, we can all thank Europe for mass, systematic, unadulterated greed. Luckily, in recent times, there has been something done to try and mitigate this great gift.

Since WW2 (or maybe it was WW1–who the fcuk is counting?) Europe’s gift to the world has been split into two schools of thought. There is the Anglo-American school (of greed) and there is the Germanic school (of greed). If one looks at the social and political structures of the various confused nations that make up Greedland–from locomotives to the cabooses–it’s easy differentiating between these two schools of greed. It’s also easy to figure out who’s the bigger or biggest Schadenfreud-ist.

Let’s summarise, shall we?

Greece is, out of choice, part of the Anglo-American school (of greed). It is failing miserably as a nation-state because of this choices. Therefore it doesn’t matter if Greece were in the EU, off the coast of the UK or stuck somewhere between Alabama and Montana. Because of its choices, Greece is where it is today. More importantly it doesn’t matter who or what state bank leant money to whom. Greece would be where it is no matter where it was at the end of any train–considering how it has traversed the landscape. Btw, most of southern Europe is failing in the same way as Greece. Those countries too have chosen the Anglo-American greed $hitshow. Which begs the question: Is there enough space at the end of the shit-train for all these fcuking cabooses?

And now for the other school of greed.

Pause. Oh God. Brace Yourself. Here it comes.

Those fcuking Krauts.

The Germania school of greed is not about Germans of old. Can you imagine how things would be if they still wore those stupid, pointy helmets and everybody was named Gunter Leckmichamarsch? No. We’re dealing with new Germans here. And these new Germans got a few things up their slimy sleeves, don’t you know. That’s right. The slime is the one thing that was never defeated in any of those dumba$$ wars, don’t you know. In fact, most of northern Europe likes the slime that is in the German sleeve. Hence northern stoic Europe, compared to the lazy south, is doing just fine. With that in mind, what’s your favourite school of greed?

One shouldn’t look at the caboose to see how the $hitshow train is running. Also, Greece is too minuscule to use as an example of the failures of capitalism. The fact that old Greeks have hoarded everything and thereby practically choked the country to death doesn’t make it an example of what or what not to do. It might just be better (easier) to focus more on human nature–which transcends all of the above–even Comrade Wolff. Again: economics is not science.

Then again, Greece is a good example for something else. Capitalism is nature’s best system for dealing with greed. For Comrade Wolff and so many others like him, everything is easier to decipher when lumped together and thrown into one basket. I guess that’s why I prefer artsy over science (science being the basket). Even though I can sympathise with some of Comrade Wolff’s ranting and raving against capitalism–for I’ve given Marx’s Das Capital a glance or three–he doesn’t really offer any viable alternative other than what all others offer: scapegoating.

Anywho. As usual, I’m off subject. This was supposed to be a quick worst-post about Comrade Wolff’s book:

Capitalism’s Crisis Deepens: Essays on the Global Economic Meltdown.

Wanting to understand Comrade Wolff’s POV regarding Greece was the reason I decided to give this book a read. (Un)fortunately this book only substantiates my belief that economics is a pseudo-science.

And so…

Is there an alternatives to the greed $hitshow (capitalism) we’re all living in today? If so, it’s not in this collection of essays. And. NO! Coops and workers taking over the system isn’t an alternative–which is mostly what Comrade Wolff proposes. If, on the other hand, you’re still kind of suffering from the duck-and-cover trauma of the 60s and 70s and hard-up on avoiding all things communist, then you don’t need to read this book. With that in mind, I’m gonna continue checking the Interwebnets for whatever Comrade Wolff has to offer. Who knows. If he keeps at it, he might figure out an alternative someday.

Good luck with that, Comrades.

Rant on.

-T


  1. I’m sure the first and second can be found somewhere at worstwriter.com ↩︎