The Illuminati

I have always been fan of the most bizarre conspiracy theories: that aliens have been in contact with our government since as early as the Tunguska event or Roswell; that Freemasons, Rosicrucians, or the Bavarian Illuminati secretly run the world; that George H. W. Bush was describing the some sort of secretive star-chamber of sinister manipulators on a global scale when he used the term “new world order”; that Hitler escaped his final retribution and lives in a secret base in the “inner earth”– a world that exists inside our own, with the “inner light” of our world projected on a landscape inverted on the “inside” of a hollow planet; that JFK was killed by a cabal of communists, mafioso, CIA operatives and J. Edgar Hoover-fronted homosexuals bent on dominating the Earth… the list goes on interminably and insanely.

Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea wrote a truly excellent book called “Illuninatus” in the late 1960’s. It is written in the style of James Joyce’s “Ulysses” and “Finnegan’s Wake”: essentially writing a book onto a printed page (easy in pre-word-processor times, since everything was done on a typewriter) and then cutting it up paragraph by paragraph, throwing the scraps into a bucket, mixing it up and drawing each piece out one by one and recording it as the book in the order extracted. The book is called “Illuminatus” and it attempts to incorporate every conspiracy from the supposed rescue of Christ from the cross to John Dillinger’s death (and reported recovery) and display of his reportedly exceptionally large penis to “selected” guests at the FBI to the JFK and RFK assassinations to the ’68 Chicago riots into a description of the state of mankind and its readiness to accept an ascension into a new state of awareness.

It is a great book for the very reason that it destroys every mechanism used to describe the world as a victim of conspiracy. Conspiracies cannot exist.

One thing I’ve learned about the way that the world in my few years of living on it is that no conspiracy can last for long. By legal definition, a conspiracy is more than one person planning  and executing an illegal act for nefarious purposes. Consider the classic bank robbery: there is more than one person who plans and executes it. What makes such an felonious act fail when one or more of the perpetrators is caught? Somebody talks.

Somebody always talks. The hairless monkey, if he loves anything at all, loves to talk, to brag, to blabber, to boast. Talk makes the world go round, and nothing can stay secret for long if a hairless ape (that’s us) is involved, and the more shaved primates involved, the more the likely that they will chatter. Welcome to the human race– no one can keep their mouth shut for long.

“Good Fella’s” is one of my favorite movies because it demonstrates (with the “Lufthansa heist”) that sooner or later, living, breathing human beings are going to talk, so (as it turns out) the best way to keep them quiet is to eliminate the adjectives from that description: make them non-living, non-breathing human beings– dead.

My only conspiracy theory that I am able to accept regarding the JFK assassination is that “Guido” is dispatched to Dallas on November 22nd 1963. He waits behind wooden fence above the grassy knoll to assist the “fall-guy” Lee Harvey Oswald. He greases the president and returns to Chicago or New York expecting a slap on the back, while LHO kills J. D. Tippett on the run to be later arrested at the Texas Theater (at which I saw film in the 1980’s and minorly freaked when my friend David Platzer reminded me was where he was caught). At the airport “Guido” is met by “Gianni” and “Rocko” who were sent by the “boss” to pick up and because he “ratted”– an unforgivable sin in mob terms. “Gianni” and “Rocko” aren’t bright enough to know anything about “Guido’s” connection to Dallas (he keeps his mouth shut just long enough to die). Later, “Rocko” and “Gianni” meet the same fate at the “boss’s” orders. Nice and neat– all the people aware of the conspiracy besides the “boss” are dead.

This is the only way that a conspiracy is preserved: everybody but one person is dead, and it’s even better if he or she is dead, too.

Loose lips sink ships.

The fewer living lips that can talk the better– thus the conspiracy survives.

There is no fucking way that the freemasons, the Rosicrucians, the Trilateral Commission, the Mormons, the whatever can be secretly running the world. Why? Secret handshakes or not, more people equals more flapping mouths and more chances the conspiracy will fall apart.

The next time you hear some Obama-hater (read “nigger-hater”, because that is all that they are) talking about the imagined socialist conspiracy, remind them that they are racists that are out of their minds. Their imagined nefarious plots out to “destroy ‘merka” are impossible because those activities involve more than one person to execute and will never be able to be kept secret for 20 seconds.

Historically, the Illuminati or “Illuminated ones” were thought of as some beings, whether human or otherwise (aliens? Atlantians? Lemurians? Republicans?), that control the world with absolute authority and capability. Such a group is an impossibility as long as human beings are involved, Q.E.D.

Humans are blabby, ergo no super-secret organizations involving them can exist.

So who or what are the Illuminati? The “Illuminated ones”, the folks who supposedly know what is really going on?

In the process of destroying the myth of the Illuminati or the masters of all conspiracy in the world, Wilson and Shea spent a lot of time in their truly mythic and voluminous book to describe the process of illumination: seeing the world as it truly is, not as an illusion.

If someone were to ask me what I wanted of life when I was 20 or 30, I would have said “happiness” (whatever the fuck that is).

What I want most of all now is enlightenment– to see everything as it really is. To be, by the classic definition of illumination, one of the Illuminati. I don’t want to conquer or control the world, I want to see and experience it as it truly is, without illusion.

To be enlightened is painful, lonely and frightening. It is easy to accept a commercial for a new car on face value and to desire the product offers– to accept its definition of the buyer as a superior person as refinement and ultimate life satisfaction. It’s painful and lonely to recognize the advertisement as a complete sham, its message as an utter falsehood.

It’s frightening to know that all appeals to our purchasing power, to our professional sports team loyalty, our protective instincts regarding our children are manipulations of our base needs.

None of the things we are implored to buy, none of the political loyalties we express in the voting booth, none of the sports we watch, the things we buy, the activities we are socially pressured into performing are genuine, and that is terrifying.

Illusion is everywhere. It is offered in a panoply of disguises we accept with dull acquiescence. To quote Wilson in his later books: “all that is is metaphor.”

Now, I’m going to go way out on a limb here and say that far beyond the social illusion and game-playing that is done to get us to buy things and vote a certain way, there is the illusion we accept at the level of what we call “reality”.

We only know that which our senses (seeing, hearing, touching, tasting and smelling) can perceive. What exists beyond those perceptions? What about the state of reality at the quantum level?

What is real?

That is what I want to know. I have always been somewhat of an oddball because I have always asked that question. I have often been mocked by friends who are stuck in the paradigm of the day-to-day. What is real? What is an illusion?

I have chosen to be  enlightened as opposed to benighted, and for that I will never be normal.

Who the fuck wants to be normal?

I only wish that people were smart enough to control things on a global scale; but I’m afraid we are far too stupid to do so at this point in our development. We are still working on mastering cleverness, and it will be a while before we are prepared to tackle intelligence.

Tales from the Automated Men’s Room

There is a fully automated men’s room at my current contract.  I dread the future like like an oncoming train every time I go in there.

The toilets flush at unexpected times, or not at all. The urinals seem to function all right, I’ve never experienced a misfire once; but the process of washing your hands rarely goes without mishap.

You can wave your hands in front of what appears to be a motion sensor on the spout. I have absolutely no idea how to control the temperature of the water. One time I washed my hands and the water was warm– words cannot express my wonderment and joy. Cold is the norm. There is a little lever on the side of the spout near the sensor, but it seems to have as much to do with the temperature of the water as the current phase of the moon.

Placing a hand under the soap dispenser, you can hear a mechanical whirring much like one you can hear when you place a penny on one of those toy banks where a green claw rakes outward to scoop the coin into a maw one can only assume leads to a cache of other coins deposited in the past. Whether the sound is actually accompanied by the deposit of a small dollop of coconut-scented soap in your palm is another matter. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t.

Mussolini never promised to make the soap arrive on time, only the trains– fascism (the merger of the corporate with daily life) fails again.

Once you are lucky enough to be anointed with (anti-bacterial!) soap, your wash your hands. Maybe your hands are wet from attempting to trigger the water spout; but if they are not, you get to feel that ever-pleasant feeling of “dry washing” with soap– sticky and unyielding, like drying Elmer’s glue or peanut butter.

Your hands properly washed (using the ABC’s rule for how long to wash them), you start dong hand flourishes like a model on the Price is Right to get the water to run again. It squirts for a nanosecond or two, requiring you to spend at least a minute to rinse the soap off your hands. Once you no longer need more water to wash the soap away, the spout gushes forth with enough water to put Niagara Falls to shame, as you shake your head in puzzlement. You try to recall what ritual you performed to get the water to flow so copiously for next time, knowing that some random number generator embedded in the sink software has generated a new pattern for the next poor sap to have to follow. You are certain you can hear the distant laughter of some engineer who came up with this shit and gets paid for it.

But you’re not done yet. Oh no, my friend– you must now dry your hands.

Knowing from past experience that the paper towel dispenser coughs out a square of paper that is insufficient for mopping up the tears of a housefly, you shake your hands over the sink. You notice that other patrons have shaken their hands about the sink in the same preparation– there are puddles all about the sink and floor, a slipping hazard and eyesore. Progress!

You turn and approach the PT dispenser with the wariness of an old adversary. It knows your moves– it’s single, unblinking sensory eye giving no indication of whether there are any PTs to dispense or not.

You pass your hands over the eye left to right, right to left, in and out, out and in, top to bottom, bottom to top, diagonally– the machine is unresponsive. You whip out your best Kung Fu moves (Quai Chang Kain would be impressed, but the machine isn’t). New patrons enter the room, and you are embarrassed at being caught in an awkward hold position you saw on UFC.

So much PT dispenser, but in case it fails to render square of pulped tree, you can rely on the back up: a hand blow-drier. As you move toward it the PT dispenser mockingly spits out 3 inches of towel as reward for your pitiful efforts. It is thoroughly soaked as soon at you tear it from its lodgement.

Bow to the machine, mortal!

You fight a homicidal urge to rip the towel monster from it mountings and smash it to smithereens. Such behavior is unseemly among contract staff– immediate termination for destruction of valuable company property in the offing.

You head for the door, dreading with utter certainty the installation of a robotic arm that will extend from the urinal in the not too distant future that will bang your dick against the porcelain to dry it, wringing the last drops from it with a wringer much like your (great-) grandmother’s vintage 1935 washing machine and stuffing it unceremoniously into your drawers where it will most certainly get caught in your zipper (I’m prepared– I wear button fly jeans).

If brilliant minds dedicated to improving the process of bodily waste elimination in a sanitary fashion can’t get this right, we are doomed.

With such a simple set of tasks going so horribly wrong, just think of the complexities of an airplane autopilot. Imagine an airline pilot frantically toggling the switch as the passenger plane stubbornly plunges into the Atlantic (Air France, anyone?) or just plain disappears over South East Asia (hello, Air Malaysia!).

That car wash you like to frequent at the local filling station– should it go bonkers, would you and your dog Fluffy (who loves to bark at the splashing water) be found in the contraption days later– you lucky to be alive only because the attendant went out to check the soap levels, having long since devoured your loving pet and one of your feet out of near starvation?

It’s what I call the “robotic arm effect.” The machine does some task that 99% of the time works without a hitch; but every once in a while that old arm goes into twitch mode, welding a nearby factory worker into the frame of your specially ordered Ford Compensator which you discover only after that “new car smell” becomes something far more sinister and nauseating.

This is where technology goes awry– or more accurately, little-understood technology in the hands of mildly clever hairless apes goes awry. We are ever more feverishly complexificatorizing everything around us, believing that if we just sprinkle or squirt a little more technology on something, it will get better. We do this blindly, and sooner or later it is going to kill us all.

I’m no Luddite by any stretch of the imagination; but I see technology fail in alarming ways every day, and people’s ability to cope with such failures becoming becoming less and less. It’s rare for someone to take a step back and say, “wow, this is cool; but will it kill me?”

As I’ve ranted before, Siri is my poster child for bad technology. The same people who were fascinated with video laser-disks and digital watches back in the seventies think that Ray Kurzweil’s brainchild is really keen, when I think of it as a slobbering, half-deaf, goat-brained monstrosity that never hears what I say nor yields a decent answer even if I talk to it slowly and avoid calling it the C-word (give it a male voice, and I’ll stop that immediately).

I’m not saying that technology is bad, but whoever thinks of the net result it yields?

If evil is the lack of conscience, then innocence is lacking the capacity to understand consequence. Adam and Eve of mythical fame were innocent, so are your children (if they are lucky they will grow out of it).

Computers are the epitome of innocence. They follow the instructions given them without question.

I’m sure somewhere, some innocent computer has been given the capacity and ability to launch a series of events (nuclear missile launch, release of airborne Ebola from government research labs, “I’m all about that base” played on every audio device on the planet, etc.) that will turn the Earth into a very un-livable place. Someone will fire off the program that initiates such an immanentization of the eschatons and the friendly and helpful computer that hosts it will pop up a dialog much like this:

Image1

Note that “Yes” is the default option, and I am terrified of what the little X in the upper right is going to do.

My father, who worked for over 20 years in computer operations before going low tech and starting a rental business that “computers don’t make mistakes, the people who program them do.” More accurately: “computers don’t make mistakes, but the hairless apes who less than 10,000 years ago were still picking lice off each other for sustenance and are the very exemplars of laziness do.”

Programming is software, and there is no such thing as bug-free software. Take it from a guy who writes the stuff for a living.

The reason that it’s called a “release” every time someone makes a piece of software available to a wider audience is much akin to the evil mad scientist “releasing” his monster on an unsuspecting nearby village, just as those same villagers coming on up to the castle to take some revenge after the depredations of the EMS’s can be considered “end-user feedback.”

We are fucked no matter how you look at it.

The International Chinese Communist Conspiracy

ChiComs are at it again.

They started back in the 1970s, when they started monkeying with the weather.  If you’re from Colorado, you remember the winter of 1983-1984–need I say more? Hurricanes started making landfall as far north as New York in 1986.

Global warming? Poppycock! You want a man-caused weather problem? ChiComs.

But enough about the weather– that’s so yesterday. Besides, the damage to the delicate climatological balance by those deranged Maoists has already been done.

But this time, they’ve gone too far. Now they are monkeying with time.

Remember how last Christmas only seemed to be about 2 weeks after the Christmas that preceded it? And, if that don’t beat all, it’s almost Christmas again! Hell, summer is over! It’s fucking Labor day (an International Communist Conspiracy holiday I might add).

Are you beginning to follow my drift?

The sheer gall that these Godless Communists show by fiddling with such things. I think their reasoning is that if they can properly distort history to further discredit Genesis. Oh the lengths to which those socialist monsters will go to prove their sick Darwinistic beliefs!

Not to mention the fact that they produce prodigious quantities of crap in their slave-labor camps that must be consumed in an ever more rapidly occurring cycle of holiday giving, or CrApple product releases.

Besides that they like fucking with us. Seriously. They could all fart at once and blow out every window on the west coast; but that would be too easy and they couldn’t deny it (not with the ensuing tsunami that would obliterate Hawaii). They want to keep us guessing.

Who else could be playing hide the pickle with time? The Ruskies? Why not? Who’s to say they haven’t been commie all alone? Were the Russians just lying low for a few years, so we’d get cocky, bloated and bogged down in a middle eastern debacle, so that they could re-emerge? Isn’t Putin trying to re-absorb the old Soviet republics? Ukraine anyone?

So much more easy to destroy the west when you can speed up time to deploy your troops and then– whammo! The First International is being sung by your kids at school, where they learn Marxism.

 

A good Consultant

A good consultant puts him or herself out of business. Go in, apply the skill set necessary (hopefully they are learned by someone who stays behind) and leave. Sticking around is wrong.

The worst thing that a good consultant can to is make him or herself indispensable.

I know plenty of bad consultants: they become the “data expert” or that one person who just knows how everything is put together– indispensable.

I’m trying to get back into good consulting again– trying to not be indispensable. Back to basics– learn my chops.

Musicians know that they have to get back in there and perform every once in a while. Practice is fine, but you have to play with a band, make your mistakes and learn the hard lessons, no matter whether if it’s straight blues or show tunes.

Being inconsequential but contributory.

 

I’m absolutely for sending troops to Iraq

Yes, we should suit up Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Bill Kristol, Liz Cheney, George W. Bush, Condi Rice, Colin Powell, Karl Rove, John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and every last Neocon we can round up, arm them to the teeth and paradrop them smack dab in the middle of Iraq. There should be at least 4500 of them we could find– just the number of lives that we have already invested in the country. Obviously those who died there in the last 11 years were not committed, if they had been they would never would have been killed…

We will keep them supplied: plenty of ammo and food, however medical evacuation and extrication is out of the question until they have solved the problems in Iraq they are so certain they could mend if they were once more in power.

Now is the time to prove with actions the conviction of their words.

HBO’s Rome (1 & 2)

This is addressed to a young friend of mine, Eric, with whom until recently I worked at a tech startup in Boulder. I loaned Rome to him before I left the company, and he, through a common friend and c o-worker of his, returned the DVDs to me.

I was wondering what you thought. Did you look up any of the people on Wikipedia? What about a society that lived by a morality that was entirely pre-christian and pre-islam, how did you feel that was portrayed?

Let me know your thoughts, I will eagerly await your comment while I dwindle my life away on a commute to the other side of planet Denver.

Later.

The History Channel’s “The World Wars”

The difference between this series and a sack of bullshit is negligible.

Donald Rumsfeld? The guy who blows Dick Cheney regularly and got us into two wars we never should have gotten into in the first place? The guy who learned his chops from the Nixon Whitehouse? The one who believe that Abu Ghraib was “just a few bad apples”? Why he not dispensing his “wisdom” while being bludgeoned with threaded rods by the overwhelming numbers of vets who want his blood (why threaded rods? Oh, they want to beat him, but they want to cut him, too) is beyond me. Tell me what insight this blood-gargling zombie can deliver to a historical documentary about warfare, puh-lease!

And Dick Cheney! Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck!

John “I never met a war I didn’t want to get hip deep into” McCain? Mr. “I crashed more planes than most Americans drive in their lifetimes” McCain? Mr. “Chatterbox” to his fellows in the Hanoi Hilton? Sure he was tortured, so were other airmen, but they didn’t talk like . LOOK IT UP! Ferchristsake, this asshole ran for president in 2008 with Sarah Palin as his running mate! Why didn’t they just put her sorry ass on and let her come up with one of her cutesy sayings? “My father could look up Hitler’s asshole from his house!”

Colin “The Hypocrite” Powell: “Once you go to war, you know how serious it is…” Really, Colin? Tell us again about the phony tube of anthrax and cartoon drawings you showed to the UN?

And one conservative wind bag after another: John Major (purse holder for the “iron lady”), Gen. Stanley McCrystal (ret. and disgraced), David Milbrand, the bloviating list goes on and on. And those lesser-known “historians” they dug up are a who’s who of right wing revisionists: just look up their CVs: Brands, Reid, etc.

Horseshit!

Dougie MacArthur? A hero? An arrogant self-promoting dictator at best. He was the very prototype of Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears, and the rest of the crowd that believes that there is no such thing as bad publicity. Did they cover how he railroaded Billy Mitchel because General Mitchel dared state that air warfare made Dougie’s vaunted strictly ground military largely obsolete? Did they cover how he turned GUNS on his fellow WWI veterans at Hoover’s order whey they marched, starving on Washington to get the bonuses promised them? Did they cover the guy who only wanted to be photographed returning to the Philippines throughout the war regardless of necessary strategic positioning?

And facts? Out the fucking window: Episode 2 opens with a “stock broker” jumping out the window after the 1929 crash. In short, it NEVER FUCKING HAPPENED, not once. Look it up! You have the Internets and the Googles! Fucking never happened. Not one stock broker jumped to his death after the crash. One banker, exactly ONE, blew his brains out 2 weeks after the crash, and he wasn’t even from Wall Street, he just lost everything. Talk about perpetuating a myth!

Oh, and the New Deal? Entirely financed by cutting the military! I didn’t know that! Wow! So glad you cleared that up.

And Stalin? His real name was Joseph Dzhugashvili, NOT Stalin (which is Russian for “steel”); but they pass him off as Stalin from the beginning and portray him as Lenin’s right hand man. Lenin (Vladimir Illyich Ulianov was his real name) distrusted Stalin, he thought he was a thug (no shit!). Lenin relied more on Trotsky (whom Stalin drove out of the USSR and later had assassinated in Mexico).

Hitler’s Beer Hall Putsch was much more complicated that depicted: he was not trying to overthrow the German government, but the provincial government of Bavaria whose capital was Munich.

And no, American intervention in the First World War was not the panacea depicted: the US did not just show up and the war ended. Hardships at home in Germany and Austria were well under way to undermining the war effort, the 100 days’ offensive was not as dramatic as depicted. Read “All Quiet on the Western Front” for a better understanding of how a beleaguered nation that had no material imports for over 4 years destroyed the German war effort. Any nation that is surrounded (their navy was destroyed at Jutland) and denied access to basic raw materials is doomed. A new word for these “History” Channel bozos: Attrition. But, of course, the true story is not as exciting as the made up one.

“The Night of Long Knives” did not bring Hitler to power! Only people in Hitler’s own party were killed in the NLK, like Roehm (his principle rival and a man recognized as a “degenerate homosexual” by his fellow Nazis). Hitler’s assumption of power was much more complicated (his party only controlled 30% of the seats in the Reichstag– think of that the next time you consider the Tea Party as just a bunch of loons out on the fringes): the aged conservative Chancellor Hindenburg who made Hitler Vice Chancellor to make the conservative coalition which included the Nazis outnumber the socialists and liberal block in the Weimar Republic’s parliamentary government. But, hey, that’s not as sexy as claiming Hitler came to power through assassination of his “political rivals”– implying that he killed his non-Nazi enemies. In fact, telling such a lie whitewashes the blood on the hands of the conservatives who made him Chancellor after Hindenburg died. Funny how modern-day conservatives telling this “history” want to hide conservative complicity in Hitler’s rise.

History simplified for idiots. I’m quite certain Fox News gives this crap 5 stars.

Go back to producing reality shows like “Mountain Men”, “Pawn Wars”, “Biker Battleground”, and “American Pickers”. Now THAT’s history.