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032 The Cult Of Nick ft Patrick Heron


A VARIED AND BALANCED DIET AND A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE ARE IMPORTANT

On this podcast we're looking back into the archives and listening to a classic couple of interviews from Patrick Heron. He's one of my favourite esoteric writers. An entertaining listen and a good insight into the roots of conspiracy theory culture, the majority of which comes from The Bible.

What also interests me about his angle is that this take on things is, roughly speaking, the kind of perspective people like George Bush and other Christians who operate at the peak of the political world use.

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The next step for the UK's Police Service?


Quite an interesting take on modern policing for the UK. Not sure what a kid who gets this will think over the years as they police their friends using a combat knife, grenade and military style helmet. Found it on the highstreet in my local Poundland. Cost me a quid. Ever the smart arse, I couldn't help but ask how much it was.

NM

There's Something Great About America - The Disinfo version


The above links to the Disinfo version.

There are a lot of comments already and it was only posted a few hours ago. It's a mixed bag, some people seem to have misunderstood the title to instead read "Everything's Great About America". Click the link to read the reactions.

Some of my favourite responses so far:

BrianApocalypse

I totally understand the sentiment being expressed in this article. It's talking of ideals which are very admirable, even if they are not always lived up to.

It is this idealistic and philosophical root that America projects most purely in its myths, and the sentiment the writer is expressing is the very same that inspired British comics writers to so powerfully intervene with the very American myth of the superhero, to the extent of reinvigorating and redefining it. From a distance. the British writers could see it in a way that their American counterparts couldn't, as an aspect of an ideal world, inspired by the perception of America viewed through the lens of myth.

--

Ted Heistman

I guess I'm in the category of those Skeptical of the Assassination of Bin Laden, but its an interesting juxtaposition you make.

I think Americans are kind of like the popular kids in High school. We don't really pay that much attention to the other little sub cultures, like the stamp collecting club, etc. We have homecoming and Student council.

For example, every Canadian I have ever met has strong opinions about American Foreign policy, our political parties etc. But Americans, don't have strong opinions about Canadians. I have only a dim inkling of their political structure, I must admit. Its just a place to buy Maple syrup, where there are some good Hockey players.

I mean, I'm personally really into Geography, but that's the sentiment of Americans. We're self absorbed. I remember as a kid though everyone was really into Princess Di. I think it just has to do with the dream girls have of marrying a rich guy and getting to be Cinderella. I don't think much thought goes into the ramifications of where the wealth comes from in terms of hereditary Monarchy and so forth. But that is an idea Americans are against by and large. The idea is that anyone in America can become rich with hard work. A lot of socialists here are pretty against that idea and trying to orgsanize the working class into a proletariat but its not really catching on.

--

Will Coles

The main problem stems from the celebration of an assassination (for it was nothing else.) The execution of an untried man, with enough doubt about his being part of it that the FBI didn't have him listed in their most wanted. The raid on another country to take him, breaking international & national laws, not to bring him to justice but to avoid justice. All done without any proof that they actually did kill Bin Laden himself, that he was alive & where they said he was, dumping his body at an undisclosed location at sea.

As for royal families, yes dumb people worship them, but as the U.S. proves, if the people don't have one they will create one, either by bloodline (the Kennedys) or celebrity (the Kardashians). As I see it, the U.S. has nothing to celebrate in that the U.K. royal family is bred to fill a specific role whereas in the US they are chosen for nothing other than entertainment, 'entertainers' paid $millions indirectly by the dumb poor & defended by them under the delusion that they could one day (somehow) become like them.

Then that brings you to 'social mobility' where the UK has the worst social mobility, as proof of existing class structure. So what is the US's excuse since it comes second or third on that list? In the UK they can point to the royal family & the aristocracy as proof (& reason) that exists, how does the US explain theirs?

There really is something Great about America

"Europe was created by history. America was created by philosophy".
- Margaret Thatcher

Note: I've rewritten this article in light of recent tragedy. It previously featured on this blog, in an earlier form here. That's one of my most popular entries of all time after it was linked to by a US website.

The land of the free and home of the brave

In 2011 two big events were celebrated on either side of the Atlantic. In the USA spontaneous parties began as news spread that Osama Bin Laden was dead. In the UK the nation was told to celebrate a Royal wedding. The scenes of joy in America filled me with a sense of almost unreserved admiration for a great nation whereas the state sponsored merriment in my own country provided me with a deep sense of detachment from a people who appeared as mindless zombies driven by raw unquestioning patriotism to celebrate something which did not benefit them at all.

As the street parties began I became painfully aware of how unfashionable my views are and it's important to emphasise how out of step with the broad consensus of my nation I am. At the time I was presenting a talk-show in London and the phone lines were rammed in response to my 'controversial' view that our old ally the US’s ideas were to be celebrated and ours condemned. Here it is the norm to hate the "stupid" Yanks. It has been for a long time and is almost a form of dogma. The irony of the belief that Americans are less intelligent is hammered home with the subtlety of a sledgehammer by the absurd presumption among Royalists that US fascination with a Royal Wedding is proof our system is better! I suspect they watch in the same way you might a documentary about the quaint customs of a jungle tribe who have drifted culturally in a 'different direction' and still worship fire. To me it's respectful and implies nothing more.

What’s important here though is the fact that the two alternative sides of the Atlantic were celebrating two opposing ideas. Bin Laden was seen as an evil man. He qualified as such not because of the identity given to him at birth but instead the one which he earned for himself in life. His actions and deeds defined him in the minds of Americans. On the other hand their birthplace defined them in his twisted brain. He hated them because of who they were born to be: Americans. That was enough for him. It didn't matter what they did with their lives, to him they would always be defined by their birthright. In my opinion the Royal Family's state sponsored knees up falls down clearly onto the wrong side of this debate.

"All men are created equal," Thomas Jefferson's still radical phrase from the Declaration of Independence is a direct attack on the idea of defining someone by birthright. It’s a courageous refusal to accept the "Divine Right of Kings" and instead have faith in the people themselves. It is a phrase clearly not believed, understood or accepted in my country. Some seem to make the mistake of thinking this idea is the same as the significantly less nuanced feeling that 'everybody is equal'. On the surface this seems just as good, if not better. However, give it a moment's thought: should people all be treated equally when their behavior marks them out for a unique response? Should, for example, child murderers be treated by society as you would a scientist who discovers a cure for cancer? Of course not. Should the work-shy and hardworking members of society be paid in equal measure? Some think so, I do not.

The Americans, in Times Square, were celebrating the death of a man who opposed their idea that "all men are created equal". The English in London and around the UK were, whether they knew it or not, celebrating the exact opposite of that on almost precisely the same day. This is ironic to me because the UK originated the philosophies which are encoded in the documents America is based upon. Furthermore, this irony is compounded by the fact that the Americans looked across the pond at us with respect for our quaint traditions and way of life. However, many of us looked at them while holding our noses with contempt at their "stupidity" and "gullibility". There’s a curious unearned swagger to the cult of anti-Americanism which I nowadays find as confusing as a patriot who thinks loving their country involves never being critical of it.

Perhaps their smug attitude is partly down to the recent rise of conspiracy theory in the UK. Conspiracy theorists like to think they look behind the veil of what is going on in the world by not believing the "official story". People of this mindset had a field day with the Bin Laden story. Many conspiracy theorists think they have a sort of “special knowledge” which puts them above other people, or “sheeple”. However, the cynical mistrust of Governments which gives rise to this mindset is, at core, very American. It has been allowed to incubate over there so much because of their commitment to the notion of "freedom of speech". The majority of that subculture is appropriated by people here as proof of that nation's failings but I see it as a sign of their strengths.

Again 'free speech' is something which we started here but do not have any firm commitment to. Certainly it's not enshrined in our law. I'm not saying I'd want to burn a Koran but if I did want to express myself like that I'd have to go over to the US to do so, otherwise I might face prosecution. In the US their commitment to "freedom of speech" is like ours to the Queen, quasi-religious. This is only right because “free speech” displays a level of faith in humanity to act with responsibility and dignity. As I write this the UK’s Government is preparing further press censorship in line with ‘The Leveson Enquiry’. I've worked all my adult life in broadcast radio and I can tell you there is no freedom of speech there for merry old England[1]. The US still trembles in horror at their so-called ‘fairness doctrine’ whereas in the UK such legislation would have been nothing more than a footnote in a much bigger document.

Don’t misunderstand me here, I’ve been anti-American when gripped by the easy cynicism of a young man but this short essay is a love letter to a country I know existed once in my imagination and can only hope will one day exist in the real world. It’s the ideas behind America which I'm seeking to defend. I have no intention of ever going there as I'm always told the reality of it is nowhere near my idealised version. If you're a reader in the states this piece is intended as a reminder of those ideas and philosophy which make you appear great to a Brit who has had a change of heart after considering the evidence. If you're a reader from the UK it's intended to push you into the realms of unpopular thought and ask you to reconsider your likely stance on "the land of the free and home of the brave".

It's also important to clarify that, like many of their citizens, I'm not blind to the often damaging effects of the reality of American foreign policy. Self awareness and the ability to change course are key to my argument and it's one of the reasons I admire that nation. The term "military industrial complex" was coined as a prescient warning by one of their own, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, in his farewell address. You often hear external critics of the nation use it, apparently unaware of this. Anti-war sentiment played a huge part in the electoral success of President Obama and JFK. To think Americans love war as much as the big companies who sometimes pull its Government's strings is absurd. Mechanised mass murder isn't popular anywhere in the world. Just as the war in Iraq wasn't here. The point is that some of the most damning critiques of American foreign policy come from within the country itself. Noam Chomsky doesn't live in Iran, he's based at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, proudly protected by the nation he criticises.

It's worth pointing out that the caricature of an American who loves guns, god and gold is just that, a caricature. Again it's most often touted by Americans themselves, angry at the failures of their own people. To all intents and purposes I am best described as an atheist. When push comes to shove I don't see any objective evidence for a God. I certainly don't think, for example, that Gods should be allowed to elect a head of state. However when I was an in the anti-American camp I laboured under the delusion that my nation had a clear seperation of church and state. The reality though is that turn of phrase is not ours. It comes from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson back in 1802:

"..I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State".

In the UK there really is no such thing, we still have unelected Bishops sitting in the Houses of Parliament, the so called, Lords Spiritual. The idea of splitting The Church away from Government may again have its roots in England but, as with most of the things I admire about the culture I've emerged from, it has been done properly in America.

Yeah, but what about slavery? They had all that bad racism in the US, the UK wins there right?

Well, I'm not so sure. As I said before what I love about the US is their self awareness, their ability to change direction and correct things when they feel they've done wrong. They did abolish slavery and their policies of racial segregation when they realised the error of their ways and now, like him or not, a black man is their President. Nothing like that is ever likely in the UK. We'll never allow a monarch of an alternative ethnicity. In truth, our mindset would have plodded on with segregation I think. Just as we have with the Royals. There's no intent to change here in the UK, we've become stagnant, clinging to past glories:

"Ooh, lets put the Great back into Great Britain," people parrot to each other as my mind shouts back: "OH JUST F--- OFF!".

Yeah but what now about their policy on gun control eh? Michael Moore made that film and it proves what idiots they all are, with their guns. I win there don’t I?

I used to think their gun policy was absurd but in fact it ties right back into the faith their founders had in humanity. Initially their guns were used to defend themselves from the tyranny of the British Empire and its tax grasping Monarchy, this is a fact not widely known by those who decry the “stupid Yanks”. I didn’t realize this until the internet allowed me to hear the uncensored US point of view. Furthermore, someone from America explained their gun policy to me thus:
Having a gun is a sign that the Government trusts the people to behave as citizens rather than slaves. A nobleman carried a sword. A peasant was not allowed one. The peasants might revolt, a nobleman will only do so if his cause is just. In short, an armed populace provides a final defence against tyranny.

There is now a full and frank debate taking place about their gun laws in light of recent tragedy. I trust their democracy to make the right decisions regarding this and have tried to avoid the unedifying spectacle of the foreign Brit smugly announcing how to improve their laws when ours still support a Queen chosen by a magic sky fairy. If only some of my fellow Brits had the good grace to hold their tongues as America endured tragedy:
When I was a child I never doubted there was something great about America. In the 80's all the best films were American and all my childhood heroes had the accent to match. As a result when I played with my toys I'd affect one myself, as best as a little English kid can. The ideas projected by those early influences still shape me to this day: freedom, justice, democracy and trying to be brave in the face of tyranny. These are all ideas I like to think I value. In fact as a kid my country and America were almost indistinguishable to me. We both spoke the same language and had stood shoulder to shoulder when facing down the cardboard cutout figure of evil represented in my family's collective memory by Adolf Hitler.

My grandparents lived in a city which was flattened by the Nazi bombs. Second only to London, Sheffield the so-called steel city of the north, still bares the scars of bombardment. Unlike our nation's capital there are some areas there which have never been considered worth properly restoring. The fact that the USA came to stop the war machine that threatened my country is still important to some.

Over the years my childhood view of the world was replaced by the easy cynicism of a teenager and, in step with most of my generation, I had a period of fashionable anti-Americanism. It seemed exciting the first time I asked of the US: "aah, but who is the real villain, is it perhaps the war monger George Bush?". My view of the world was bolstered by firece critiques from the comedian Bill Hicks[2] which at the time I misunderstood the context of. In retrospect I think Hicks deeply loved his country and was, like me, an idealist who couldn't understand why the realities of it seemed to fall short.

I remember September 2001, it proved to me that America is not superman and can be wounded. Things change - America might not always be a world power. That won't concern the Royals. They can do business with China just as easily as they can the Americans. Perhaps their Kingdom will be more adapted to fit that style of Government, when the economic tide turns. It concerns me that if that happens those who come after us will stuggle to find anyone of any note who thinks they were created equal. It also worries me that no one will be allowed to voice that concern and their last defence against tyranny will have gone.

Nick Margerrison

Please add comments whether you agree or disagree, it makes for a better article and ultimately improves my writing style.

[1] As if to make this point with unnecessary force we even banned one of America's talk presenters, Michael Savage, from ever entering this country. He's a man in his 60's who talks for a living. It should be seen as incredible that the full weight of the Her Majesty's Government was put behind banning him from ever paying us a visit.

[2] Hicks was very popular in the UK, probably more so in his lifetime than he was in the US.

UK's Incredibly Unpopular Deputy Prime Minister Turns to Drugs

UK's Incredibly Unpopular Deputy Prime Minister Turns to Drugs

The Disinfo version of the article. Some good comments on there already:

BuzzCoastin
my how times have changed
now failing politicians are pandering to the drug vote

Tchoutoye

With Nick Clegg's approval rating plummeting and his LibDem party threatening to become smaller than the Euro-skeptic UKIP party, thus losing its position in the coalition, his move seems a desperate attempt to boost his electoral appeal.

Politicians are finally waking up to the reality that drugs are a lot more popular than they are, as can be seen by the fact that in Colorado the cannabis legalization proposition received 40,000 more votes than Obama.

Avatar


Just hurry up and do it.



031 Alex Jones interview - The Cult Of Nick


I've been a fan of Alex Jones for as long as I can remember. The interview here makes that obvious. What's interesting is that I push him to speak about his religious beliefs as I believe that is crucial to understanding how his mindset works.

Many of the people who oppose the big brother state and further extensions of Government and bureaucratic power do so because they're coming from a spiritual perspective. Most arguments in favour of it see ideas such as ID chips, anti-terror laws and CCTV cameras as simply being "rational" solutions to many of the problems in our world. It is therefore interesting to note the "irrational" mindset of some of their fiercest critics.

I do not use the word "irrational" as a term of abuse here. I believe people are fundementally irrational. From a purely rational point of view there's no beauty in a flower and love is just a chemical reation in your brain. Rationalism reduces the world and in truth sells us all short. In short, rational explanations are useful but they do not encompass everything. The word is linked to measurement and these days I believe there really are some things which you will never be able to measure.

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There's Someone Who Nose How to Sniff Out a Problem

There's Someone Who Nose How to Sniff Out a Problem

Nick Clegg on drugs


"Daniel-san, must talk. Walk on road, hm? Walk left side, safe. Walk right side, safe. Walk middle, sooner or later get squish just like grape. Here, karate, same thing. Either you karate do 'yes' or karate do 'no.' You karate do 'guess so,' get squish just like grape. Understand?"

- Mr Miyagi

It's a shame Nick Clegg is the classic example of a politician who breaks promises because his new stance on the UK's drugs laws, reported here by The Guardian, should be applauded:
Divisions between David Cameron and Nick Clegg over Britain's "war on drugs" emerged on Friday after the Liberal Democrat leader said that current policy was not working and accused politicians of "a conspiracy of sience".
Committing his party to pledging a major review of how to tackle the drug problem in its 2015 election manifesto, Clegg claimed Britain was losing the war "on an industrial scale". He said Cameron should have the courage to look at issues such as decriminalisation or legalisation of drugs.  
Clegg - not big on committments
Unfortunately "committing" is not the first word that springs to mind in relation to Clegg. I first heard the word "quisling" in relation to him and ironically this was before the election. Google it if it's new to you. His party will be rendered irrelevant by the next election and I strongly suspect simple demographics will sweep Labour to victory again[1].

I've been publicly advocating decriminalisation since at least as far back as 2002. On air I would use the wise words of Mr Miyagi to illustrate the point that our middle-of-the-road policy is incredibly dangerous. It's depressing rather than gratifying to be annually proven correct. The recent edition of The BBC's 'Question Time' perfectly illustrated two alternative solutions to the so-called war on drugs. On the one hand you had Peter Hitchens. His suggestion is to 'actually make it a war' as, according to him, decriminalisation has happened in all but name. So, he argues, lets try actually locking people up for even the most minor infringements of the narcotics law. In that world even so much as a scratch of cannabis under your fingernails would get you hard jail time.

In pre-austerity Britain I used to find it tricky to argue against such logic. Will Self attempted to nail the opposing point of view but his words were, I think, discredited by his widely-known drug problems which he felt the need to reference. The truth though is this issue is not about "liking drugs" it is about "funding criminals". I don't like the dangerous nature of extreme sports but I have no desire for our Government to attempt to ban them. If we had the money to follow Hitchens and pander to the moralistic whims of The Daily Mail that would be one thing. In reality we do not. So, over the next few years, this problem will continue to become more and more damaging for our wider society as criminals inevitably become proportionately richer than us.

Personally I believe the London riots were mainly carried out by "street gangs" and, as one of the journalists credited with first reporting the story, I feel qualified to comment a little. At the time it was obvious social media was being used to organise people into acts of violence. These low level organised crime outfits are almost entirley funded by the £billions made in the illegal drugs market, particularly from so-called soft drugs. In my opinion not tackling this problem puts more riots into our future as we walk on down the middle of Mr Miyagi's metaphorical road. Next time though the rioters will be more aware of their combined strength and I don't doubt our politicians will be on holiday again.

If not in actuality then certainly metaphorically.

"Squish" indeed.

Nick Margerrison.

[1] Tory supporters have been outnumbered by Labour supporters who, over the years, generally have more children. I don't vote for any political party. None of them impress me and I'm not inclined to do as most people do by voting "for the lesser evil". I do not want to support evil thanks.

Further reading: How about constant democracy?

The New World in 2030 "You'll Need Good Global Management"

The New World in 2030 "You'll Need Good Global Management"

The podcast seems to be working, don't go telling everyone.

Almost ten years ago I started doing a phone in show on Hallam FM in Sheffield. I remember me and my producer watching the dead switchboards as no one called in, night after night. Then, gradually, people started to get involved. That early period is always one of the most exciting as you start to find your audience but don't yet have to deal with the problems which come with mass appeal. It is because of these problems that my podcast is wilfully specific and not intended for a mainstream audience. I've started to think perhaps that will always be more trouble than it's worth. 

However, after a couple of months, it appears the podcast has now found a few hundred people who like it. To me this feels like a more exciting version of those early days when we first started getting calls in South Yorkshire all those years ago. 

If you're one of the ones who download it every week: thanks for doing so. Lets stick to the plan and only share it with the people you think will dig it.

030 The Cult Of Nick KLF Chaos Magic Music Money


In 1994 Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty took a million pounds to a deserted boathouse on the island of Jura and burnt it. The writer JMR Higgs looked at this event from a magickal perspective and came up with some interesting results. The story involves the world's first joke religion, the JFK assasination, Robert Anton Wilson, Alan Moore and a bunch of ideas collectively known as "Chaos Magick".

This week is an entirely new interview, the previous lot have all been unedited bits from the Nick Margerrison archives.

If you're interested in "sigils" which we get to talking about right at the end of the interview go to the Disinfo.com website where I've written some short essays on the topic. Once there you're looking for "Essays for the Discordian Occultist".

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European City of Amsterdam Announces Plans to Concentrate "Scum" Into Camps

European City of Amsterdam Announces Plans to Concentrate "Scum" Into Camps

Same story but proof-read and more likely to have comments angry at my disgust towards the dogmatic left wing.

I honestly think this story is one of the most ominous developments of 2012.

Amsterdam's Neo-Concentration Camps

"People (Germans) use to frighten their children, 'If you do not behave, you will surely end up at Dachau.'"
- Theodore Haas

As the European federalists continue trying ruthlessly to construct their would-be superstate, with unquestioning support from the "left wing" throughout the nation states involved, disturbing news emerges from Amsterdam. The Guardian reports:
the Dutch capital may lose its reputation for tolerance over plans to dispatch nuisance neighbours to "scum villages" made from shipping containers.
The mayor, Eberhard van der Laan, insists his controversial new £810,000 policy to tackle antisocial behaviour is to protect victims of abuse and homophobia from harassment.
The camps where antisocial tenants will be rehoused for three to six months have been called "scum villages" because the policy echoes proposals from Geert Wilders, the far-right populist, who last year demanded that "repeat offenders" be "sent to a village for scum".
But Bartho Boer, a spokesman for the mayor, denies that the plans are illiberal. "We want to defend the liberal values of Amsterdam," he says. "We want everyone to be who he and she is – whether they are gay and lesbian or stand up to violence and are then victims of harassment. We as a society want to defend them."
The last time a self declared "socialist" tried this kind of idea in Europe there were terrible consequences[1]. The echos of those camps, also designed to lock up "asocials," are entirely ignored by the left leaning Guardian. Furthermore the self-declared "left wing" and "socialist" Daily Mirror newspaper runs an opinion piece where their columnist, Carole Malone, can barely contain her excitment:
Dam good suggestion
[...] only when families have changed their ways will they be eligible for rehousing.And, as attractive as that sounds, it could never happen here [in the UK] because the human rights lobby would go ape.
And nuisance families, who frequently wreck decent people’s lives, bank on that. Which is why they know they can do whatever the hell they like as they’ll never have to face the consequences.
And while scum villages might sound harsh, I’m willing to bet that within six months nuisance families won’t exist in Amsterdam.
Hammering home the fact that the left wing is clearly being used to construct a terrifying new world in Europe often frustrates the debate but I believe it is essential. In my opinion neither the left wing nor the right wing provide any reasonable responses to many of the obvious dangers emerging on our collective horizon. However most of the so-called left seem almost blind to many of the problems they are bringing directly to our doorstep.

Adolf Hitler emerged from the left wing, as tyranny often does. His kind, once in power, are then preserved and protected by the right wing. These neo-concentration camps which are now being suggested in Europe make for a good example of this dynamic. They are being ushered in by the "left wing" Partij van de Arbeid and, once established, will likely be enthusiastically used and protected by the right.

I use the term "concentration camps" here in its specific sense[2]. A concentration camp is designed to do just that, put all the "undesirables" into one area. The plan in question is clearly modelled on Geert Wilders' suggestions reported here by Dutch News where he makes this point explicit:
‘Repeat offenders should be forcibly removed from their neighbourhood and sent to a village for scum,’ Wilders said. ‘They will then be put into converted containers as homes. If juveniles are involved, their families should be moved too. Put all the trash together.’ 
[My emphasis]


--------------------------  EDIT December 13th  --------------------------

The two comments below have, in my mind, become an essential part of this article so I was keen to reproduce them here. They make the point that the emphasis upon "liberal values" and protecting "gay and lesbian" people implies a target for these camps to some which simply hadn't occured to me. In this instance "Muslim immigrants" and "1st and 2nd generation Moroccan" people. It also emphasises that such ideas are inevitably going to be popular to many even though I might strongly disagree with them. Also, it's interesting to remember that people noted in 1933 that the camps at Dachau were comfortable and not in any way a "punishment".

I do find it odd that there's a kind of blind spot when it comes to the more simple tried and tested solution of enforcing the law and locking people up when they break it. As if that's out of the question, better to throw them into camps and concentrate their numbers into one area. 

Finally, I sincerely mean no personal offence to the contributors in question and thank you both for your thoughts and alternative opinion.

From The Disinfo comments section.

littleemily

This article is missing a few facts:

- Holland is a small, overpopulated country with a severe housing shortage. It's not unusual for families to live in a 1-bedroom home. There are already thousands of people who live in modified shipping containers, which are self-contained and quite comfortable. Being sent to live in a container village isn't some kind of cruel punishment.

- So-called 'nuisance families' are a HUGE problem in the Netherlands. Repeated physical and sexual assault, intimidation, extortion, burglaries etc,,, It just takes one of these families to make life a living hell for thousands of people. Nothing the police or legal system do works because a - sentences are too light, b - as soon as they are released from jail, they re-offend and c - while one family member is locked up, the rest of the family continue to terrorize the area.

- the Dutch are accepting of homosexuality and alternative lifestyles. Muslim immigrants (which are the vast majority of the 'nuisance families') are not. Gangs of 1st and 2nd generation Moroccan youths attack gay men and run them out of their homes. The irony about this is that some of these gay men are themselves immigrants who came to the Netherlands to escape homophobia in their own countries.

Andy Seatrees Millward

Good comment - this article is insulting, comparing this proposal to the Nazi camps. What a let down from a generally good news site.

FOOTNOTES:

[1] The National Socialist German Worker's Party started theirs in Dachau in 1933 and its intent was exactly the same: put all the scum together. Do not buy into the lie that Hitler was "right wing" in the sense we now understand it.

Further reading: Liberal Fascism by Jonah Goldberg

[2] Concentration camps were initially distinct from the death camps which came later on in Europe's history.

Gangnam style bloke in a bit of bother

That man who sings the novelty pop song "Gangnam Style" has issued a full and frank apology according to The Daily Dot:
"As a proud South Korean who was educated in the United States and lived there for a very significant part of my life, I understand the sacrifices American servicemen and women have made to protect freedom and democracy in my country and around the world. The song I featured on in question from eight years ago - was part of a deeply emotional reaction to the war in Iraq and the killing of two Korean schoolgirls that was part of the overall antiwar sentiment shared by others around the world at that time."
Perhaps I should be more clear. He's not yet apologised for his song, "Gangnam style". Instead he's crapping his pants over a song he sang years ago demanding people murder the "f--king Yankees" and their families "slowly and painfully". Turns out not all publicity is good publicity and his CV was starting to look a bit dodgy now it has been revealed he once sung these lyrics:
Kill those f--king Yankees who have been torturing Iraqi captives
Kill those f--king Yankees who ordered them to torture
Kill their daughters, mothers, daughters-in-law, and fathers
Kill them all slowly and painfully
(Again from The Daily Dot)
The track itself is here:
I don't speak Korean but the tune itself sounds pretty siiick[1] to me. His apology continues:
"While I'm grateful for the freedom to express one's self, I've learned there are limits to what language is appropriate and I'm deeply sorry for how these lyrics could be interpreted. I will forever be sorry for any pain I have caused by those words.
"I have been honored to perform in front of American soldiers in recent months -– including an appearance on the Jay Leno show specifically for them — and I hope they and all Americans can accept my apology. While it's important that we express our opinions, I deeply regret the inflammatory and inappropriate language I used to do so. In my music, I try to give people a release, a reason to smile. I have learned that thru music, our universal language we can all come together as a culture of humanity and I hope that you will accept my apology."
Full apology in The Daily Dot.
The big pussy didn't actually write the tune but according to ABC 7 news in 2007 he made a point of smashing a model of a U.S. tank on stage. ABC News reports:
The 34-year-old rapper says the protests were part of a "deeply emotional" reaction to the war and the death of two Korean school girls, who were killed when a U.S. military vehicle hit them as they walked alongside the road. He noted anti-war sentiment was high around the world at the time.
It's thought he dropped the "Kill the f--king Yankees" track during this particular performance

Fortunately his anti-American sentiment appears to have calmed since people started paying him lots of money to sing harmless novelty pop songs instead.

Gangnam style indeed!

FOOTNOTE:

[1] This is intended as a compliment. I actually like the dense sound of this tune even if the translated and decontextualised lyrics appear a bit moronic.

----------- EDIT 13th December -----------

Press coverage regarding a tragic death in the UK suggests that the media has suddenly taken a serious dislike of this guy:

Gangnam Style dance kills dad (The Sun)

It's a tragic story of a man who was killed by a heart attack but the spin is interesting given the anti-American story being reported more widely around the world.

Then there's this attempt to fudge the anti-American lyrics here:

Controversy over Psy’s anti-American lyrics might be based on shoddy translation (Washinton Post)

I made it clear in the original post that these lyrics were both "translated and decontextualised" but am suspicious of a number of things. Firstly, why did he apologise instead of attempt to deny the story and secondly this article contains lots of "might be" language. There's clearly debate and those advocating a "misunderstanding" still ultimately fall on the side of these lyrics being offensive and strongly anti-American.

Nick Margerrison


Additional post about the recent Royal tragedy

Some interesting comments on the news sites carrying the story about these DJs who are being blamed for a nurse's apparent suicide:

From The Daily Mail:

[...] I blame the Royal family, the delusion of 'importance' they create for themselves to maintain their position and power is a form of mental control and manipulation over the masses and people become sick with it. Still they will use the idiotic public outrage and loyalty to their advantage, because that is the game they play. WAKE UP people. If no one fell for the illusion this would never have happened.
notmorelies , cardiff, United Kingdom
 
To all the people on here who are mocking the fact that these DJs are upset and condemning them for their actions, do you not see the irony in what you are doing?? This nurse was so upset and embarrassed by what happened that she took her own life, which is absolutely tragic, but by continuing to make these two people feel responsible there is a danger that they could feel and do exactly the same. Please do not add to this tragedy. Rest in peace Jacinta and please let us let ALL others involved find some peace and comfort.

PBS to Screen Magical Mystery Tour

PBS to Screen Magical Mystery Tour

Who is to blame for suicide?


The recent suicide of a nurse in the UK has brought these thoughts to mind and I'm posting this blog entry to help clarify the debate for anyone unfamilliar with the issues.

When I was younger suicide almost seemed fashionable. Kurt Cobain killed himself and my generation was devastated. Around the same time a personal friend of mine also took his own life and our social circle was never really the same again. In the immediate aftermath I was furious at the society he'd turned his back on. It made me quite an angry person. Then another friend killed themselves and I was forced to reconsider my perspective.

Suicide is defined in most cultures as "self-murder". That's a definition I am more comfortable with. Part of dealing with the grief of losing someone like that comes, I think, from understanding this dynamic. The person you know has done something you disagree with on a profound level. It's not disrespectful to think that, it's an expression of the fact you loved them and still want them to be around. If another person had killed them you would likely be baying for their blood and probably never forgive them. In this instance though you have no one to blame in such a way.

Furthermore blaming others is, I think, entirely the wrong thing to do. It runs contrary to the above logic and justifies the action of self-murderers. Firstly it implies you think they were partly right to take their lives. They weren't. No one is. Whatever problem it is you face it will seem less awful if you give it time. Life is hope. Stand on the side of those who want to live. Secondly though such "sympathy" for the victim's motives could encourage more suicidal people to take their lives. Keep that in mind while posting on this topic. People of this mindset look for excuses to murder themselves. The current ill-informed online frenzy around this topic is very likely to increase the number families who will have someone murder themselves just before Christmas. Self-murder is always the ultimate responsibility of the person who does the deed. Ironically though the ones who encourage it the most are the ones who think they're being "sympathetic" by blaming society and anyone else but the victim.

Nick Margerrison.

A Beginner's Guide to Sigil Craft

A Beginner's Guide to Sigil Craft

An audio version of the essay is here:


Inevitably this title is now attracting attention as "sigils" become more widely understood in this, the new age. The above link will send you to a popular essay I wrote on the subject and works as a basic "how to" guide. It should function perfectly well alongside most magical belief systems.

That's enough for most people.

A small number may become interested in the obscure system that lies behind this "how to" guide. It's called Discordianism, it's a joke religion and we are not searching for any new members at the moment. However its theology is perfectly explained here:

Introducing Alan Watts?

Introducing Alan Watts?

029 The Cult Of Nick ft Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince


A "true" story of Jesus this week. It's based upon the book "The Masks Of Christ" and is another piece taken from the archives. Lynn and Clive featured on my TV show "Esoteria" a year or so after this interview. This is one of my personal favourites. The book had a big impact on me. It freaks me out to actually think that Jesus was a real person. He looked up at the same sun and moon we do. Quite interesting to think of him like that as opposed to the contrasting myths we get in the books of the bible.

Nick Margerrison

twitter.com/nickmargerrison

www.nicholarse.com


Check out this episode!

What's the new Hobbit film like?

The Guardian reports on the lack of reviews for the new Hobbit film:
For fans eager to get the first critical verdict on Peter Jackson's return to Middle-earth after The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey premiered in Wellington on Wednesday night, it has been a frustrating couple of days. With the new film trilogy tipped to surpass its blockbuster megalith predecessor The Lord of the Rings at the global box office, it seemed certain that at least a handful of critics would make the decision to defy studio embargoes and publish and be damned. Instead, the only verdicts handed down thus far have come from luminaries such as film-maker Bryan Singer, and little-known Kiwi blogger Kylie Klein, who, it seems, was so overwhelmed by getting a ticket that her critical faculties were slightly swept away.
[...]

Word is that we won't get to see any more reviews now until 5 December, when the embargo ends.
With this in mind there is a hilarious bit of trolling on the Telegraph website regarding the film. It's not a review, more a "piece of Sixth Form polemical rhetoric," according to one of the many hundreds of critical posts placed underneath. The full article is worth a read. However, a warning, if you're a fan of the Tolkien film conversions, don't expect to be any the wiser as to what the new film is going to be like.

A swift review of the highlights includes our troll putting people down because of their physical appearance and suggesting it's probably your fault if you don't look conventionally attractive:
Pale skin, hairy feet and short stature are fairly common among fantasy fans. If you spend your entire life living in your mum’s basement playing Xbox and eating Wotsits, then you’re unlikely to grow up looking like Daniel Craig.
[My emphasis]
FULL STORY
This is of course great work. Right from the offset anyone who has been drawn in by the topic hoping for a review of the film gets insulted straight away. Excellent!

Of course, good trolls hide behind nice bold statements of the obvious, it helps disguise their attacks. A quick definition of something which people will agree on is a good trick. Here the troll explains that fiction is a retreat from reality:
If popular culture holds a mirror up to society, the success of these films can only reflect a retreat from reality.
FULL STORY
Then the intended victims are told they're pandering to greed with their apparently innocent hobby:
At the root of all of this virtual reality is real greed. The Hobbit is a great example of how Hollywood has franchised fantasy and encouraged its fans to run away from real life. The book is relatively short, yet[...]
[My emphasis]
FULL STORY
Also notice, we get a classic bit of trolling as the author uses an odd definition of the word "short". The Hobbit's quite a big book, getting a detail like that apparently wrong is an excellent way of ever so slightly irritating curious but informed readers. This is outstanding technique!

Now our troll goes in for the kill by comparing all fans of fantasy fiction to drug users:
[...]A 2008 study found that 10 per cent of Harry Potter readers experience the classic symptoms of substance abuse: loss of sleep and appetite, obsession with the material and withdrawal pains when they complete the last book of the series. A book acts as a gateway drug [...]
The hook is that tawdry lives are elevated by fantasy in the same way that alcohol convinces a man that he is bigger and better looking than he really is. “By day I deliver Domino’s pizzas. But by night, I am King of the Lizard people!”
[My emphasis]
FULL STORY
Notice the brilliant implication here that the author is better than those he seeks to annoy. Their 'tawdry lives' may as well be ones of alcoholism and drug abuse. Reminding them of their implicitly pathetic jobs by comparison to his is a brave move as it almost gives the trolling game away. Fortunately he's back to stating the obvious soon after this bold display:
[...] it’s certainly not to my taste. I can’t stand the Tolkien movies. To me they are plodding and dull [...]
[My emphasis]
FULL STORY
Then, in the awesome conclusion to the piece he decides that the film's "acolytes seem victims of arrested development – detaching themselves from the real world with its real people and its real challenges" and "[i]t’s only a matter of time before the Tolkien cult grows so big that we have to treat it like a serious part of our culture".

Imagine that! Treating Tolkien as a serious part of our culture? Awesome stuff.

At the time of writing my favourite response to this piece was the blunt but amusing, Lord_Kitcheners_Valet, who replies with:
"Miserable toffee-nosed git."
Nick Margerrison

Man-Eating Wolves Return to Berlin? Let's Celebrate!

Man-Eating Wolves Return to Berlin? Let's Celebrate!

Do Wolves eat people? It'd be real handy if you could put an answer to that question in the comments section of the above Disinfo article.

028 The Cult Of Nick The Awakening - an audio essay


The fuller text of this essay is on the Disinfo.com website. You can find it by typing "The Global Awakening" into google, it's on the first page of that search at the moment. It got re-tweeted almost 100 times and got around 200 "likes" on it. It's my attempt at putting a positive spin on a meme that has been around for some time.

If people like it I might try and do another in a month or so, if not we'll just crack on with the archive.

Already got some very interesting people who are interested in being interviewed on this podcast as a stand alone piece. Won't happen until the new year.

The music performance was taken from http://musopen.org/music/piece/278

My twitter address is twitter.com/nickmargerrison

My personal blog is www.nicholarse.com

This podcast can now be found on iTunes.

It's early days cult members, I'm still learning this new form but I think I'm starting to get an idea of how cool it could be.


Check out this episode!

Recent articles for Disinfo

Regular blog readers, of which there are still a reasonable number, are invited to check out the huge list of recent posts I've wacked up below. They're all click throughs to stuff I've written on the Disinfo website in the last month or so.

Hope you enjoy them.

NM

Flying Saucer or Wacky Filler Story, You Decide...

Flying Saucer or Wacky Filler Story, You Decide...

Why Are Comics So Often Magick?

Why Are Comics So Often Magick?

Well, why are they?

Many a True Word Spoken in Jest? - Iranian News Agency.

Many a True Word Spoken in Jest? - Iranian News Agency.

This is an old story but it speaks to the current tensions in middle east.

Boobs and Booze? Where Do I Sign?

Boobs and Booze? Where Do I Sign?

It's Party Time! Bring Your Machine Gun!

It's Party Time! Bring Your Machine Gun!

This blog gets a mainly UK readership. The above link is about gun control. I like the fact guns are legal in the US and think it's a very complex argument that most people this side of the pond misunderstand.

UK Government to Use Facebook in "New" National ID Scheme

UK Government to Use Facebook in "New" National ID Scheme

I suggest you check this one out in particular, it's going to be big over the next few months.

It Was 50 years Ago Today: The North Of England Taught the Band to Play...

It Was 50 years Ago Today: The North Of England Taught the Band to Play...

The New Urban Jungle: City Dwelling Lions and Bears?

The New Urban Jungle: City Dwelling Lions and Bears?

The United States of Europe Continues its Decline

The United States of Europe Continues its Decline

Is Willpower a Limited Resource Which Can be Cultivated with Exercise?

Is Willpower a Limited Resource Which Can be Cultivated with Exercise?

"Conspiracy Road Trip" Presenter: "I Was There To Debunk It For The BBC"

"Conspiracy Road Trip" Presenter: "I Was There To Debunk It For The BBC"

A dissapointing confession of overt bias from the BBC's Andrew Maxwell.

Nobel Peace Surprise for Failed EU Superstate.

Nobel Peace Surprise for Failed EU Superstate.

‘Child Sacrifice’ in Northern India to ‘Trace Hidden Treasure’: When Magick Goes Wrong?

‘Child Sacrifice’ in Northern India to ‘Trace Hidden Treasure’: When Magick Goes Wrong?

Did David Icke Call Out the British Establishment's Pedophile Jimmy Savile?

Did David Icke Call Out the British Establishment's Pedophile Jimmy Savile?

New Study Provides "Confirmation for Stereotypes About Sex-Hungry Males and Naïve Females"

New Study Provides "Confirmation for Stereotypes About Sex-Hungry Males and Naïve Females"

Will a "Ban" on Long Hair, Tattoos and Piercings Help the Ailing Music Retailer HMV?

Will a "Ban" on Long Hair, Tattoos and Piercings Help the Ailing Music Retailer HMV?

Lasers Before Butter

Lasers Before Butter

Will You Vote Not To?

Will You Vote Not To?

Listeners who remember my London based news talk show will remember this as one of my more "controversial" opinions. I've still never met a politician I wanted to vote for. I've voted once, for Tony Blair, and look how that all turned out. The above link takes you through to a debate on this idea but from an American perspective.

We Aren't Anonymous, We Are Legion

We Aren't Anonymous, We Are Legion

No, I am not nor ever have been a member of anonymous. There's an ideological link between Discordianism and their avowed philosophy but there the connection ends. The Anonymous collective suffers from all the inherent problems inflicted upon the individual by 'group think', a cancer of the old age.

More than anything this article is the basis for my follow up essay to "The Global Awakening" which I am currently working on. At the moment it is titled: "The Apocalypse". It'll feature first on Disinfo but it'll take a while to finish.

"Living The Dream"

"Living The Dream"

Part two in the series of essays for the busy Discordian occultist. The linked to article takes you through to the world famous Discordian mind map which I did not design but believe is a clear work of genius.

Invisibility Scientists Make Visible Improvements in Their Technology

Invisibility Scientists Make Visible Improvements in Their Technology

The Global Awakening

The Global Awakening

This is a big essay designed to translate quite an obscure occult concept into more everyday language. It went "viral" once published and continues to gather an audience. To date I think it's my best work.

Actually, scrap that, there's a wicked article I wrote about belly button rings once...

She Sleeps with 30 Men a Week but She Ain't a Prostitute?

She Sleeps with 30 Men a Week but She Ain't a Prostitute?

What is the Future of "UFOlogy"?

What is the Future of "UFOlogy"?

"Life is But a Dream"

"Life is But a Dream"

First in a series of short essays designed for the busy would-be Discordian occultist.

Logical Thinking Seems to Negate Empathy

Logical Thinking Seems to Negate Empathy

Amsterdam Disregards a Ban on Tourists

Amsterdam Disregards a Ban on Tourists

A "Treat" Not to Be Sniffed At: Trick-or-Treaters Receive Bag of Cocaine

A "Treat" Not to Be Sniffed At: Trick-or-Treaters Receive Bag of Cocaine

Come Join My Cult..

Come Join My Cult..

Breaking God's spel?

Breaking God's spel?

Hilarious "Satirist" Pushes the Envelope Too Far?

Hilarious "Satirist" Pushes the Envelope Too Far?

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