Tag: Three Stooges

Brainiac On Banjo: Oh, Sure, It’s For The Children!

Brainiac On Banjo: Oh, Sure, It’s For The Children!

Sex and drugs and rock and roll is all my brain and body need. Sex and drugs and rock and roll are very good indeed. “Sex and drugs and rock and roll,” written by Ian Dury and Chaz Janke.

Whenever somebody advocates for the restriction of personal freedoms in the name of the children — It’s for the children! — I utter “bullshit!” These self-righteous self-appointed snobs, elitists and holy-holies advocate against what they consider moral, according to their Dickensian upbringing and just how big and how wide that pole is that they keep up their own asses.

The latest is only the latest because of the proliferation legal establishments where normal humans can drown away their money without having to understand the nuances of decentralized cryptocurrency. According to The Guardian a couple days ago under the headline ‘We’re Killing the Youth of America’: Calls Grow For Crackdown on US Gambling, according to executive director of New Jersey’s Council on Compulsive Gambling Felicia Grondin, “There’s a lot of kids that are gambling.”

No shit, Sherlock.

And kids are speeding, drinking booze, shooting guns, and watching The Three Stooges. I’ll bet even Ms. Grondin did some of that before she was twenty-one. Or eighteen, as the case may be.

Personally, I do not possess the gambling gene. I have been to casinos exactly twice, and that was because each had a great barbecue restaurant. I won exactly enough to pay for dinner each time, and I haven’t been inside of one in nearly twenty years. I don’t have a dog in this race, except a lust to silence the Brain Police. Continue reading “Brainiac On Banjo: Oh, Sure, It’s For The Children!”

Brainiac On Banjo: Hey, Kids! VIOLENCE!!!

Brainiac On Banjo: Hey, Kids! VIOLENCE!!!

I’m a mean mistweetah, A wabbit feastah, And I pwedict, A bwoody Eastaw, A scuwowing shadow, And dah shadow was dis wabbit, And dah night aiwah echoes, Kill dah wabbit! — Bob Rivers, Kill The Wabbit, 2009

Felix The Cat was our first animated hero, making his debut in Otto Messmer’s Feline Follies in 1919. The plot: A stereotypical old lady goes out for the evening, leaving her house in the hands of her kitty, Mister Tom (played by Felix – look, just go with that). Being a tom cat, once the coast is clear Felix splits to his girlfriend’s house for an off-screen tête-à-tête.

Of course, while the cat’s away the mice will play. In fact, they’ll rip the old lady’s house apart. By the time Felix returns, the house is decimated but he’s too blissed out to notice. Then the owner returns, freaks out at all the damage, beats the poo out of Felix and slings him out of the house.

The slightly indignant Felix doesn’t care. He goes back to his girlfriend’s house and is greeted with open paws. Then about a billion newborn kittens, each looking exactly like Felix, swarms all over their papa. Evidently, cartoon kitties have a remarkably short gestation period. Be this as it may, it is now Felix’s turn to freak. He runs away, straight to the nearby gas field where he attaches a hose to an in-ground spigot and commits suicide.

Was there general outrage over Feline Follies? Was there an upsurge of kids running to gas fields to off themselves? Did anybody ban the sale of brooms to cat-owners?

Hell, no. People didn’t take this stuff seriously. It was a cartoon, not a documentary.

Was Messmer advocating violence by mice, cats or old ladies? Was he advocating unprotected kitty sex? Was he suggesting suicide was the best way to handle trauma? Again, hell no. It was a cartoon.

Because my brain is wired differently than yours, I thought of Feline Follies when I heard of a comics writer/artist being accused of being a fascist for working on a best-selling heroic fantasy comic book. Said writer/artist was accused by another writer/artist, who was no stranger to the concept of cartoon violence. If you labor in the fields of heroic fantasy, evidently, you are wearing an invisible SS uniform. Well, as Lenny Bruce pointed out, “Gestapo? I’m the damn mailman!”

Violence has been the cornerstone of heroic fantasy going back to the Year Gimmel. The line was blurry when the major source of such stories was in the realm of the religions that are now regarded as mythology as well as the religions that various warring factions today regard as gospel. But once it is removed from these trappings of conviction, fictional violence is just a plot device. If Elmer Fudd inspires your kid to want to get a shotgun, your kid needs professional help.

But once parenting became perceived as a science – which it is not; it’s an art form – “cartoon violence” had to be… edited. ‘Doilies for the mind’, to quote Mason Williams. The Three Stooges have been entertaining people since 1922, but their oeuvre became scissor-fodder in the early 1960s. How many of you have great-great grandparents whose eyes were poked out? Bugs Bunny is a latecomer, having debuted (as developed) some 80 years ago. He, too, has suffered the fate of a thousand cuts.

Entire generations of humans have been raised since we became smotheringly overprotective. Are we now a less violent society? Maybe you’ve never read a “newspaper,” but if your knowledge intake is limited to even the most anti-social of social media you should be aware that real-world violence remains a VERY Big Deal. Maybe we should deal with the real, physical issues that lead to such behavior instead of emasculating Wile E. Coyote and Larry Fine.

I have been known to toss the fascist tag around myself. I understand the definition of the term because I know how to work a dictionary. I try to use it appropriately, even when I’m being purposely offensive. Simply working on a heroic fantasy story that involves such violence does not make you a fascist, it makes you a storyteller. Batman could be perceived as a colloquial fascist, yet many of his better stories have been created by the late card-carrying liberal Denny O’Neil as well as by his opposite number on the right, Chuck Dixon. This does not make either a fascist.

Owning a gun, let alone writing about owning a gun, does not make you a fascist. Believing Smith and Wesson, Ruger and Colt should be in charge of our foreign policy just might – but any student of 20th century history should know better.

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Forget, if you can, his incessant self-serving ego-pandering tweets. Forget his strange fetish for violent dictators. His continuous denial of scientific fact. His rampant bigotry and his classic xenophobia. And stop wasting your time trying to decode his nefarious master plan, starting with his Black Floyd Wall. A plan of any sort does not exist. It never did.

I know. You can’t forget. Something about the fate of the world and you’re still young and / or you have kids or at least you’re thinking about it. To quote once again Lenny Bruce: “Yadda yadda yadda.” The fact is, so many of Donald Trump’s plans and propositions are nakedly stupid. We all suffer from the pains of the Law of Unintended Consequences; that’s human nature, or fate, or karma — whatever; your mileage may vary. What I mean here is stupid. So stupid that even Ike Broflovski knows it, and he’s in kindergarten.

Which is why, this week, my respect for German Chancellor Angela Merkel hit a new high.

First, a technical consideration. Chancellor Merkel discussed the sheer stupidity of Trump’s tariffs policy before the Munich Security Conference. She was a complete professional, combining many contradicting emotions — befuddlement, bewilderment, anger, fear, and complete disbelief – into one, long television-friendly wince. That is not easy to do. I’ve done a lot of public speaking, and I know how tough that is. Give it a try. Don’t hurt yourself. Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Stupid Is As Stupid Does”