The Moment of Truth — July 14, 2001

Catastrophe

Hi, I’m mejeffdorchen and welcome to the Moment of Truth, the singularity in the media void that will one day explode in a big bang and become the universe as we will know it.

Beijing has been awarded the 2008 Olympic games. When asked how this would affect him personally, Henry Kissinger expressed the hope that one day China would be a place he could go hide out to avoid prosecution for human rights violations. He plans to watch the games in an underground bunker on high-definition TV with a few close prostitutes and a bowl of cyanide capsules, just in case the Belgian wrestling team finds out where he is. Kissinger wants to join the Olympic committee so that he can be bribed by the Belgian government with immunity in return for getting Brussells the 2012 Olympiad. In the meantime, Belgium is gonna wait and see what kind of economic repurcussions their indictment against Ariel Sharon has, and if after eleven years the US-based transnational corporations, on behalf of their client dictatorships, haven’t squeezed the last drop of Trappist beer out of them, they might just figure they should quit while they’re ahead and cut Kissinger a deal. Because, let’s face it: how much actual justice can the global economy support in the course of two decades? Particularly when that justice is to be meeted out to a criminal allied with the US government? I mean, Milosevic, sure, he doesn’t have any money, prosecute him as much as you want. But when the US economy sneezes, Europe gets a cold. And Henry Kissinger is part of the US economy’s immune system. If he and other statesmen don’t have immunity from prosecution, how will they be able to help Third World dictators keep labor unions and populists and environmental organizations under control in that bloody and evil fashion that made this economy what it is today? The US violence-based economy took a big hit in the immune system with all that uproar about General Augusto Pinochet. Margaret Thatcher nearly caught pneumonia, such was her distress at seeing her old friend – who so warmly massacred so many of his own people in the National Stadium in Santiago, Chile – threatened with thumbscrews at the Old Bailey or the Spanish Inquisition’s rack and iron maiden. Oh, no, wait. Thatcher IS the iron maiden. When her government closed itself on England, much was the pain and anguish and spiky punctures. I suppose that after screwing all the workers of England, the iron maiden didn’t feel the need to put Pinochet through the torture of being inside her. Not that his rod, which he never spared in order not to spoil the children of Chile, was anymore inviting an organ in the metaphorical sexual intercourse that is the politics of economic violence, which spreads its STDs and threatens the health of the people, while somehow the rapists remain immune. Perhaps because they wear the prophylactics of their armies and police forces, at the base of which bristle missiles like nodes on a French Tickler that can bring whole cities to explosive orgasm. I hear Hiroshima and Nagasaki were real screamers.

Which brings us to the new outer space weapons system, which is like a bunch of orbiting penises that are supposed to kill other countries’ penises as they fly in to try to rape our nation right through its star-spangled underwear. Now, everyone who believes that the Bush people really think it’s important to have weapons in outer space for the security of the country, raise your hand. See, not even Bush raised his hand, and he might be the only person in the country gullible enough to actually have believed it. After all, he seems to believe he was elected president. And he even believes that he IS president and that Dick Cheney is vice president and all the other people who are running the executive branch are in his “cabinet.” But he is from Texas. The people who serve in state government in Texas are notoriously stupid. That’s why they’re so keen to execute retarded people. They’re threatened by the intellectual competition. But the whole country seems wise to the fact that this space weapons thing is just a way for a bunch of defense contractors to suck up a lot of tax dollars without having to produce anything that actually works.

Oh, speaking of Texas, did you know that 7-11, whose headquarters are in Texas, has come out with a giant beverage called the extreme big gulp? Isn’t that important news? Isn’t it serious and deep? This story was reported on that flagship news show of National Public Radio, All Things Considered. We learned that people think the extreme big gulp is really big and that the innovative container keeps the beverage cold. Also, when the CEO of 7-11 looks into an idling UPS truck and sees an extreme big gulp in there, it warms his heart. The story was reported by the insufferable Linda Wertheimer, who is apparently jockeying for Bill O’Reilly’s old job at Inside Edition. It would only be tit for tat, since O’Reilly has usurped former public radio nabob Cokie Roberts’ throne as primetime’s most egregious daily TV newsfascist. But O’Reilly’s reign is sure to end when DNA tests reveal that he, Roberts, Sam Donaldson, George Will, Rush Limbaugh, and Doctor Laura were all cloned from the same clump of fetal tissue. Or is that “fecal issue?”

And thus the great cycle of life is renewed. The bristling military regimes rape the people; the clergy and the inaccessibility of health care force the people to carry these rape babies to term; then the corporations devour the babies and poop out primetime journalists, who in turn pave the way for further raping. It’s a whole symbiotic structure that can only be marveled at, because there certainly doesn’t seem to be any escape from it.

However, there used to be this thing called Catastrophe Theory, which might be our only hope – or, at least if it doesn’t kill us, it might make us stronger. Or something. Anyway, what happens is, as a system goes about its merry way, cycling through its cycles, gradually little anomalies appear. Little quirky, out-of-the-ordinary things. Like a truly subversive TV show runs for years and years on the same network that produces the O’Reilly Factor. Like, one communist government survives the fall of the Soviet Bloc, and somehow happens to have better health care and education than any other country in its region. Or one retarded Texas murderer avoids execution and is instead installed by the Supreme Court as President of the United States. Little anomalies like that. And the system adjusts a bit for each anomaly. But the adjustments just pave the way for more anomalies, and this creates a feedback loop between the anomalies and the system adjustments until the pressure of adjusting to the enormous amounts of anomalies becomes so great that the system suffers a catastrophe – its old form collapses under the weight of its inappopriateness within the new environment created partially by its own responses to incrimental change. The incrimental responses to incrimental change build to a catastrophe that leaves – not a crater of destruction – but a new system better suited to the new environment the struggles of the old system led to. And so the cycle of catastrophe begins anew, as little by little the new system begins to accumulate anomalies.

Now, some might say, no news is good news. And certainly the state of US journalism could lead one to this conclusion. Others might say, what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. But that’s not true. A bad bout of pneumonia might not kill you, but it might damage your lungs so much that you’ll forever be susceptible to bronchitis. Still others might say, God never gives you any problems he doesn’t think you can handle. But in the case of Rwanda and East Timor and Sierra Leone God seems to have grossly overestimated some folks. Still others might say, early to bed, early to rise. Others, what color is your parachute? Others, don’t fill up between snacks. But the facts paint a different picture. And that picture is worth a thousand words, even when adjusted for inflation.

We mustn’t fear catastrophe. Not because catastrophe is our friend, though it might be. Rather, because catastrophe is going to come or not regardless of our fear. It’s just like when you let unpaid parking tickets pile up. One of these days you’re gonna get the boot. And when you do, the only thing to do is go to court, pay the tickets off, go down to the impound lot and wait in that quonset hut with all the other suckers, ankle-deep in water cuz the toilet overflowed, till they give you that cardboard thing and you gotta walk through that big lot to find your car, and they’ve written numbers all over it with some kind of weird wax, and then you drive home and take a nap. Or you can just say, “keep the car, it’s not worth the price of the tickets.” Then you don’t have to put anything off, you can nap right away.

I guess you should just trust your instincts on this catastrophe issue. I’m sure everything’ll turn out all right.

Until next time, I’m mejeffdorchen, and this has been the Moment of Truth.