Saturday, September 01, 2007

POST-HUMAN (a hot night rumination)

Here in Los Angeles, the temperature was pushing 100F this afternoon with no exaggeration. Parts of the city suffered power blackouts, and the cat decided it was sufficient reason to demand two breakfasts just in case some PM apocalypse might occur and upset what the airlines call meal service. And, of course, it’s the Labor Day holiday weekend in a city, country, and culture with so little pride in the power of labor or the dignity of unions that a party or parade would – like socialism – be just tooo 20th century. (But what do I know about work? I’m a bloody writer.)

And as a writer a found a couple of brand new hyphenated words to play around with that came with both a thrill and a chill…

Post-human” he muttered to himself, over and over, ruminating and less than happy.

If you heard it here first, you heard it heard it here first, but I doubt it will be the last time (maybe the last time, I don’t know.) Supposedly the post-human condition will be whatever emerges in the wake of The Singularity when, in thirty or some years, as predicted by Ray Kurzweil and others, the computers will be smarter than we are and they’ll be calling the shots, and our brains will supposedly be integrated with advanced microprocessors and nanobots will be rebuilding our cellular structure, granting us virtual immortality. Or possibly our personalities will be uploaded onto a super-future hard drive and then decanted into some incredible piece of animatronic biotech. Although when I say we, I actually don’t include myself in all this because even though I quit cigarettes, I in no way expect to live another thirty years with US healthcare, and even if I did, I would be so fucking old when all this came to pass, I'd hope to be too full of synthetic opium to care. And I would also be more than a trifle ashamed to evolve into something more complex and some kind of wonderful while a planetary crisis of extinct polar bears and level 7 hurricanes still almost certainly will remain unsolved. Or is being solved by the super smart computers who might – like Skynet, the Matrix, the Daleks, and HAL 9000 before them – decide that the first and most rational and eminently sensible move towards restabilizing Earth would be to exterminate humanity with all possible speed.

But it’s a hot night and I’m really only playing with the words

The secret word is Hell

And for no other reason than impulse and the mood of the night here's the orginal b&w video of David Bowie singing "Wild Is The Wind" (And, of course, the song does contain the secret word.)

Friday, August 31, 2007


Here’s another Julian Beever (the English artist famous for his chalk art on the pavements of England, France, Germany, USA, Australia and Belgium – see last Wednesday.) A crowd gathers around the archeological illusion. (From HCB)


Doug the Bass sends over this was an 'off the cuff' response by Brother Noam Chomsky, during a public talk, to an audience interruption asking "...what are you talking about? Fascism? Anarchy? Define your terms."

"Fascism is a system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership togetherwith a belligerent nationalism."

"Anarchism is not just a romantic fable but the hard-headed realization, based on 5000 years of experience, that we cannot entrust the management of our lives to kings, priests, politicians, generals, and county commissioners. It is founded on the observation that since few people are wise enough to rule themselves, even fewer are wise enough to ruleothers."

The secret word is Hope

(And, of yeah, Andy and I had a pretty satisfying show last night – mainly thanks to Francine.)

The email is still

Thursday, August 30, 2007


Where is the woman in the black vinyl dress?
And why does she weep and stumble from the mausoleum?
Last night I had the dream I have feared
For over a year.
The surrealist cocktail of grief and Gethsemane
The twisting vortex of fury and dead flowers
Is there significance that it comes 48 hours
Before I have agreed to perform?
And Nick Cave is singing Suzanne
On my TV
At a Leonard Cohen tribute
In Canada
And, at that point, I almost catch myself
In a moment of madness
Buddhist or booze fighter?
Savage or St. Francis?
I never made it to Assisi
Or Alpha Centauri
But I can’t stop now.
Why should I?

(Poor Otis dead and gone, left me here to sing his song.)

There is no secret word. But come and see us play. Maybe the duck will drop.

(Andy Colquhoun and I perform tonight at Tommy Ray’s. See Monday for information)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007



I don’t know if it’s an omen, good or bad or what, but Ronald Reagan keeps popping up all over. Here he is with James Dean on the cover of the new Radiators From Space CD. It was sent over by Miss Templeton who explains its provenance. (But beware. There’s more Reagan to come.)

"It's from a 1952 TV playhouse thing in which Dean is rather good as a drunken beatnik and Reagan is, well, Reagan as a Doctor who has been held hostage by Dean until he can fix up his friend who is badly wounded - they can't go to a hospital because the wounds occurred in the course of a robbery or whatever. It's called "The Dark Dark Hours" and is mostly rubbish, Dean's fascinating hep-talking beatnik excepted. Classic network cheese. A black/white simplistic moral situation, decent society vs degenerate 'other' and then everyone's perennial favorite: guns. It wouldn't be more than a footnote in either actor's history, except that one of them became the President of the United States at the time when the national Chevrolet was taking a hard turn to the right. And the other become the international icon of that streak of raw American rebellion that's always there and ready and doesn't even need to wait for a cause."

The secret words are Republicans Caught In The Men’s Room



Julian Beever is an English artist who's famous for his chalk art on the pavements of England, France, Germany, USA, Australia and Belgium. The 3D illusion is a real mindfuck. Figure where the chalk stops and the beer begins. (Thanks HCB)

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


(Spanish Civil War poster from Refugi 307)
After writing for most of the weekend, my hands hurt, I had no thoughts left, and some local weatherman with a flair for the dramatic he probably gleaned from watching Inside The Actor’s Studio, was telling me that another unmitigated heatwave was on the way. On Thursday I’m doing my first live show in god knows how long and everyone will stay home and hug the AC. But then this diatribe turned up from Frank-in-the-Bunker via Doug the Bass and I figured it was wildly radical enough to pass along instead of a resume of my late summer August neurosis. The gun control argument may get some of you going. It is, however, almost identical to the Black Panthers position on firearms. (And probably what got a whole lot of them massacred by cops and FBI.)

"Slave: "Master, will you please stop whipping me?"
Master: "No."
Slave: "Ow. Pretty please?"
Master: "No."
Slave: "Ow. Darn."
There you have the entire political process, in this country and every other. Instead of asking nicely, should the slave be allowed to forcibly stop the master from whipping him? Surely we can't have that! That would be against the "law"! No single sentence better sums up the belief that we are the PROPERTY of the politicians, than this one: "You have to work within the system."In other words, we have no right to do what we want, until we first get the politicians, via "legislation," to SAY we have the right (which means it isn't a "right" at all). "Mom, can I please go out and play?" "Congress, can I please keep more of what I earn?" The asking itself implies that THEY have the right to decide, which in turn implies that they OWN all of us.The Declaration of Independence speaks of unalienable individual rights--which we didn't get from "government," and which no "government" has the right to deprive us of. Why, then, when the politicians do violate those rights (as they do on a daily basis), do we ask THEM to please stop it? It's because the general public does NOT believe in unalienable rights at all.If someone is trying to steal my car, do I need the THIEF'S permission before I have the right to try to stop him? No. So if tyrants are stomping on my rights, why would I need to ask them for "legal" permission to resist their oppressions? The very idea is idiotic. When it comes to "lobbying" politicians, I find the example of "gun control" particularly amusing. Lots of Americans believe, as the Founders of the country did, that an armed populace is the best guard against oppressive government. In other words, the common folk should be armed so that, if the government becomes overly abusive and oppressive, the people can violently overthrow it. So how silly is it to "lobby" politicians to please "legalize" private gun ownership? Consider the absurd message it sends: "We have the right to forcibly resist you if we decide you're being oppressive! So, um, can we please keep our guns? Pretty please?"The Founders said these things a lot more politely, and in a more respectable, civilized manner. I'll say it so anyone can understand: If someone tries to disarm you, when you haven't committed force or fraud against anyone, you have the absolute right--"law" or no "law"--to kill the person who tries it. Oddly, even most "gun rights" advocates don't like putting it that way, though their stated reasons for "gun rights" is to protect against tyranny. Well, duh: if you need the tyrant's PERMISSION (via "law") before you'll resist tyranny, what's the point?A consistent message from people who believe in gun rights—which admittedly would make most people very uneasy (because of their underlying "government"-worship)--would be this: "Dear Congressman, I understand you are considering voting for so-called 'legislation' that would disarm me. Be advised, if you do that, I have the right to kill any thugs you send to disarm me, and the right to kill you for sending them to do it. Have a nice day."I know a LOT of you cringed when you read that. No offense, but the only reason you would cringe is if, deep down inside, you believe that we are all OBLIGATED to obey whatever commands politicians decide to dish out. And in order to believe that, you must believe that each of us BELONGS to them. If some private individual threatened to come into your house to disarm you, most of you would, without hesitation, condone a response such as: "Try it, and I'll blow your damn head off!" And if ten people, or a hundred people, threatened to disarm you, you'd have the right to violently resist ALL of them.So why would you have any less of a right to do it--and why does the idea of forcibly resisting make most people uneasy--when people wearing the label of "authority" try it? Aren't they just people, too? In most peoples' eyes, NO, they aren't just people; they are representatives of our collective master, our OWNERS: "government." And as long as the people hold that view, the ONLY power they will ever have is the power to pitifully beg their masters to please be nice. In other words, they will have no power at all. A lot of people have said that they want something somewhere between what I speak of and what we currently have. They want a lot less government, but not none at all. But once again, when it comes right down to it, there are only TWO options: either we each own ourselves, or we are all owned by "government." There is no in between, and there can be no compromise between the two. EVERY so-called "moderate" solution concedes that we are slaves, but asks our owners to be nice. If we own ourselves, we don't NEED their permission to be free, their "laws" carry no obligation to obey, and we have every right to forcibly resist their infringements just as we would have if our neighbor decided on his own to start "taxing" and "regulating" us. If you ask me, being a slave who can only beg his master to be nice isn't good enough. If that makes me an "extremist," so be it. If I were a slave, I'd prefer a nice master. I'd be oppressed so rarely, and to such a small degree, that even I would rarely bother to complain about it. Nonetheless, there is still a fundamental, crucial difference between being the property of a wise, benign, permissive and kind master, and owning yourself. The former should never be accepted as being good enough. – Larken Rose

The secret word is Right!

Monday, August 27, 2007


It’s been while since Mick Farren and Andy Colquhoun walked their musical dog in the Los Angeles basin. But did you really think we’d hung it up? Hell no. We’ll be rolling out the two-man psychedelic deviant future blues at Tommy Ray’s on Ventura for a special show next Thursday (August 30th) and you are cordially invited.

Tommy Ray’s, 12345 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604 (That’s like between Laurel Canyon and Whitsett.)
(818) 506-2412

And if you’re wondering about the heat of the dog days, the show’s on a patio. So drink it up, tip the waitress, but make sure you come on down.

(Goddamnit, this reads like an old time radio commercial.)

The secret word is Nervous


Bernie sent this review from yesterdays Sunday Times in London of a 32 track CD compilation called “Cries From The Midnight Circus – Ladbroke Grove 1967 – 78” on which I feature on three cuts with and without The Deviants.

"The soundtrack of Richard Curtis’s Notting Hill ignored bands from the area in favour of anodyne pap appropriate to the film’s content. Here’s the real soundtrack of Notting Hill: 32 tracks follow musicians from Ladbroke Grove, London’s little Haight-Ashbury, as they shed shaggy afghans for proto-punk street gear. The Pretty Things invent the rock opera on Defecting Grey; American expats the Misunderstood preempt psychedelia with the eastern stomp Children of the Sun; with Do It, the Pink Fairies could have been our Stooges; and Mick Farren, a local legend, flails around enthusiastically, achieving nothing but sounding splendid."

I’m clearly a little conflicted. I feel that “achieving nothing” is possibly an understandable error, so I’m totally concentrating on the “sounding splendid.”

Sunday, August 26, 2007


Can’t write anything profound, insightful or even just plain silly today since I am contending with the deadline from Black Lagoon. I can, however, offer you a free download (if you can follow the directions, which I’m not sure I can) of Gringo Madness by Tijuana Bible. Tijuana Bible consisted of Henry Beck, John Collins and me, and was a minimalist, highly poetic, Manhattan anti-folk, unplugged kinda endeavor that played live in the saloons of the Lower East Side in the late 1980s and reconvened on a snowy weekend on 9th Avenue to cut this epic around the time Bill Clinton was getting elected president.

And if that’s not enough, how about some retro-culture in the form of a video of James Dean and Gig Young in a safe-driving public service TV spot.

The secret word is Overworked