A Bad Career Move?


Did you hear Stone Temple Pilots have a new singer? That seems like a pretty dangerous position to me. Kinda like being a fisherman in the Gulf of Alaska, fronting a band with Pat Smear on guitar or serving in the Trump administration. I gotta hand it to Jeff Gutt, it takes some balls to step into a position held by two people who have died recently.

All joking aside though, I do think the new track sounds great and wish STP the best of luck. They definitely deserve it as they’ve been through a lot and weathered more than their fair share of bad luck.

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Marilyn Manson Can Suck His Own Dick


You sicko. Why the hell would you click on that link?

I’ll tell you why: You’ve fallen victim to a great marketing scheme.

This post isn’t actually about Manson’s ability to perform autofellatio. I agree with the idea that someone wouldn’t do it themselves when they could get others to do? But some people are into some strange shit. Remember rule 43: If it exists there’s a fetish for it (and probably half a dozen websites dedicated to this fetish).

Some quick internet research tells me that about 1 percent of males can physically contact their penises with their mouths but only about 0.2 – 0.3 percent can actually perform the act.* I’ve heard Ron Jeremy can do it and has on film, but I’m not looking for that.** I don’t want to make any assumptions about the pale emperor’s length, flexibility or sexual desires (that’s not of my business and this is a free country), but damn that was a great marketing idea.

Sex sells. Even oral sex sells. Even oral sex with yourself sells.

Where did the rumor even begin? You have to wonder if there was a meeting at Interscope records and someone said, “What if we start a rumor you removed a few ribs to suck yourself off?” I imagine a bunch of guys in business suits sitting around a conference table nodding.

This was the 90s equivalent of Ozzy biting the heads off those doves. Or biting the head off that bat. Or snorting that line of army ants. Or pissing on the Alamo.

I think Marilyn Manson realizes there really is no such thing as bad publicity. You would think something like this would prevent people from running out and buying a record, and I’m sure it did stop some, but ultimately a lot of people bought Marilyn Manson albums.^ Even Michael Jackson continued to sell records while being charged with child molestation. He’s the artist on the top-selling album of all time. Being in the news just means people are thinking about you, and they may be thinking, “You know, Thriller was an awesome album.”

This principle used to not extend to politics. Ed Muskie dropped his bid for the Democratic Presidential Nomination amid rumors he was taking an exotic drug. 1972 vice presidential nominee, Thomas Eagleton’s history of mental illness and electroconvulsive therapy is thought to have played a part in George McGovern’s loss. ^*

Of course, this has changed in the past few years. After all, Donald Trump was elected president.

Have you figured out why I didn’t title this post “The Marketing Genius of Marilyn Manson?” Would you have clicked if that was the title?

 


* Although roughly 99.9999856 percent have tried.

**I’ve looked up some weird shit for this site, but I’m drawing a line right there.

^ I own several

^* Of course, Muskie served as Secretary of State under Jimmy Carter for a brief time and Eagleton won re-election to the Senate.

Why I’m Proud to be an American


 

At a time when it would be easy to feel shame and embarrassment about the state of my country, I’m actually feeling quite optimistic.

Sure, our President is a giant sack of shit who has somehow managed to appear semi-sentient and he and his team have somehow found time in their busy schedule coordinating policy with the Russians to convince 38 percent of Americans that he’s doing a good job.

And the Speaker of the House isn’t any better.

It’s easy to find doomsayers and Chicken Littles on the internet. It’s easy to predict a dystopian future. It’s easy to sit back and bemoan how things are only getting worse.

Do you wanna know what I say?

 

 

 

 

FUCK THAT!

I’ve always found adversity to be the strongest motivator. And the challenges we face are just other names for goals we already wanted to accomplish, but now have the burning desire to see through.

“Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves, that if (we) last for a thousand years, men will still say, This was their finest hour.”

Will it be hard? Yes. Will there be suffering? Yes. Will we persevere? Most definitely.

But millions of Americans have already proven they’re up to the challenge, and that is what makes me proud.

 

“Why stand on a silent platform? Fight the war, fuck the norm.”

Letter to my Representatives


This isn’t the first letter I’ve sent to my congressman over the past few months. I made the decision to share it on here as a way of sharing my view with a larger audience and  (hopefully) make me harder to ignore.

Dear Congressman Gibbs, Speaker Ryan and President Trump, 

 

I started this letter last week, but like the bill it is written to protest it was shelved. I haven’t been extremely interested in the Obamacare repeal. I’m not not in danger of losing coverage. I have health insurance through my employer, and I haven’t seen my rates skyrocket.

 

But my girlfriend is a different matter. She only recently managed to get health insurance through the Medicaid expansion. It’s a lucky thing she did because two weeks ago she she suffered a seizure at work, fell and hit her head. Whereas others would suffer a bruise or concussion from this type of accident, she managed to do heavy damage to her brain. I’m not sure if it’s because she’s had several head injuries in the past, because she suffers from gastroparesis or if she was just unlucky; but she did enough damage to her skull that she’s spent the interim in a bed at Akron General Hospital Intensive Care Unit.

 

She is someone who works hard to make her way in the world, but due to these medical problems the bills have piled up. A few months ago she told me she was considering bankruptcy. Now that she’s in the hospital it has fallen on me to look after her financial matters. I think we’ll be able to catch up with what she already owes, but I’m concerned about the bill we will be receiving for her current treatment.

 

As I said at the beginning, I was hesitant to write this letter. I don’t want to make a political issue of this hardship. It was a relief to learn repeal had stalled because I was confident that, while this is certainly a difficult situation and will take a lot of work to overcome, we would be OK. Now that there’s a law being considered to take away her insurance I’m not so sure. Who will be paying for this hospital stay when that happens? Will they kick her out? Should I start calling bankruptcy lawyers?

 

These are all questions that weigh heavily on my mind. I don’t want to become someone who goes broke due to an illness, but it looks like that’s exactly what will happen.

 

I urge you to vote against this bill. All you will accomplish is to make a situation that’s already hard even more difficult.
Perhaps we should take a page from the Trump handbook. Maybe we’ll send the bill to the President, Speaker of the House and you. But, just like that big, beautiful wall I’m sure we’ll end up footing the bill and we’ll probably have to file for bankruptcy.

Bedtime for Democracy


Apologies for my recent absence dear constant reader. Things have come up that need attention.

Also, apologies for the shift of focus in this blog. We are unfortunate to live in an interesting time and there are things happening that I cannot remain silent about.

I’ll try to keep music in there somewhere.

Here’s a piece I wrote for a WordPress site called “Millenial Democrats.” Expect things in this vein from me in the future. If you’d like to update your subscription preferences to omit me, I’ll understand.

Bedtime for Democracy

But above all else, I’ll try to remain entertaining. That’s always been my primary goal with this.

Feel free to chime in.

 

Don’t Have To Live Like A Refugee


 

Damn, we’re only a week into the Trump presidency and I already wish I lived in an alternate reality; just like Trump supporters do.

A few months ago I was talking to a Canadian follower, Mike Ladano, in the comment section of “Icky Trump” and we got on the topic of the refugee crisis.

Do people worry about something bad happening? I asked him.

Oh yeah people are uneasy. Heck I’m uneasy! It’s naive to think ISIS will not use this tragedy to their advantage. It’s also naive to assume every country will be able to screen out all the bad people. But it’s a humanitarian crisis and people are split. A lot of “not our problem” vs. “Canada is the kind of country that helps.” A lot of “not worth the risk” vs. “we have to try to help”. And each side points to headlines around the world to make their points. 

This sentiment basically sums up how I feel about the issue. It would be naive of me to think that a few bad apples won’t make there way in with the rest of the bunch, but I’m not heartless enough to support turning away tens of thousand of people fleeing war, oppression and destruction. I’d like to think that America is the kind of country that would help; but sadly, I’ve been proven wrong.

I have a daughter and of course I worry about her, but the addition of Syrian refugees isn’t going to change that. I live in a community filled with people who think they need to own fully automatic AR-15s and whatever other type of high capacity weapons they can get their hands on because it’s their right to defend themselves against the tyranny of the federal government.

No, I’m not worried about refugees.

16265621_1435604136481766_5452606032854278941_nAnd the crazy thing about this: It’s not all based on a sense of righteousness or wanting to do the right thing. I honestly don’t think that bombing the shit out of Daesh is the way to defeat radical Islamic terrorism. Sure, we have enough nukes to kill every living thing on the planet seven times over, so we have the firepower to turn everything from Turkey to Iran into a glow-in-the-dark parking lot, but is that the answer?

When we send a drone strike to Yemen or Somalia or Sudan and kill a terrorist is that the end of the story? What about the terrorists’ friends? Or wife? Or brothers? Or children? These are people who will say “America killed my friend, my husband, my brother or my father. Is drone warfare eliminating terrorists or breeding them? If we send in a bomb to kill Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi how long to you think it would take before he is replaced? It took him eleven years after Saddam Hussein was overthrown, but with Assad on the ropes and the region in chaos, it won’t take long for someone else to rise to power.

And will they be any better?

I don’t want to come off like some sort of world-peace, patchouli-smelling hippie, but I don’t think war is helping anything at this point in history. I know Saddam Hussein was not a good guy. I know that Bashar al-Assad is not a good guy. I know that the terrorists getting hit by drone missiles are not good people. And yes, I know Donald Trump is doing what he thinks it right. The point that I’d like to make is I don’t agree with him.

We could send 325 million Americans to Mesopotamia each armed with 20 million bullets and it wouldn’t make a bit of difference. You can’t kill an ideology with a bullet. I think Trump is making it a lot easier for people who want to hate America to feel justified in that feeling. I know his rise to power has made me question my patriotism. How can I love a country that allows something like this to happen? A country that causes chaos in a part of the world then turns its back on those affected?

od6I’m not an expert on the subject, but didn’t I hear once that the best breeding ground for terrorists is refugee camps? If we want to stamp out radical Islamic terrorism shouldn’t we be welcoming people fleeing and showing them that we’re the good guys? Shouldn’t we be treating these people the way we want to be treated? Didn’t someone important once say ‘as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me‘?

The truth is that we can’t show Syrian refugees we’re the good guys because we’re not the good guys. I want to believe that there is hope (and I do see some), but it’s getting hard to believe. Calling America a Christian nation is an alternative fact.

I keep telling myself I’m doing some good from behind this computer. That I’m working and bettering myself and giving to charity and raising a caring, levelheaded daughter all that is enough. But I don’t really think it is. What I’d really like to do is sell all my possessions, join up with the UN, or Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services or the Peace Corp or just fly to Turkey and see what I can do. I don’t know much about carpentry, nursing, medicine, peacekeeping or soldiering, but I’m a fast learner.

But I know that doing that wouldn’t be enough either.