Sunday, January 1, 2012

Life in Cyberspace...

One of the things I get great enjoyment out of, misanthrope that I am increasingly becoming, is trawling through reviews of books, films, television programmes, and DVD's in cyberspace looking for something incredibly stupid.

Recently I found yet another example of stupid human critic tricks. On Amazon.com I found this review under the Acorn release of the acclaimed British television show House of Elliot which aired on the BBC between 1991 and 1994 (http://www.amazon.com/House-Eliott-Complete-Collection/product-reviews/B000PC6YUI/ref=cm_cr_dp_hist_1?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&filterBy=addOneStar). According to, I presume he thought this was a witty as Wilde moniker, C.U. Later, House of Elliot, a costume drama set in the 1920s created by Jean Marsh and Eileen Atkins, who also created the seminal British television programme Upstairs Downstairs (ITV, 1971-1975) is something only a socialist, communist or Fabianist could love. C.U. Later not being a "socialist, communist, or Fabianist" did not like House of Elliot. Instead it reminded him "of the reasons" he doesn't watch Hollywood productions. Hollywood, Mr. Later claims, is a promoter of socialist propaganda and so is The House of Eliott. And for that reason alone Mr. Later prefers to bury both Hollywood and the House of Elliot in a flurry of right wing rhetoric and demagoguery about the demonic horrors of socialism. He thus gives it only one star out of a possible five. Amazon, of course, doesn't allow its critics to give something 0 stars.

As you can imagine there have been several comments on C.U. Later's "review" of House of Elliot. In one of my favourites Ms. S. Westley replies "Wow, am I glad I looked at your review 'CU Later'. As a Brit I had always thought that 'House of Eliott' was just a tame, rather silly programe about posh girls designing frocks in 1920's London. Now, however, I realise its really a Hollywood version of The Communist Manifesto. Thanks for opening my eyes! "

Apart from the fact that C.U. Later's review is rather frightening in its idiocy I think his review tells us something about how many on the American right today think or more accurately misthink. To turn contemporary Hollywood, whose main goal seems to me to be to try to get kiddies and tweens to spend money by going to movies and make themselves rich in the process (now that's what I call socialism), into a den of socialism requires, given the real nature of the films and TV programmes that come out of Hollywood, an incredible manipulation of reality. It requires that Rambo become a commies turned me, a true blue American, into a bad ass dude by taking revenge on anyone who screws with me so that I, in the process, lose my true blue Americaness. It requires that Die Hard become a tale of a socialist cop who takes down "evil" capitalist terrorists in the name of red socialism. It requires that Transformers become a tale about how evil technology is always a commie plot trying to take over the world. It requires that Star Wars become a commie plot because it quotes Triumph of the Will. Fascism equals communism, socialism, and liberalism after all in right wing paranoic discourse. It requires that The War Horse become a film grounded in socialist ideas about why we should be humane to animals. It requires that Gladiator become a socialist film filled to the brim with all that equality crap. It requires that Alvin and the Chipmunks become a film about a bunch of communist inspired animals who, while hiding behind their cuteness and appeal to true blue American kids, saps Americans of their red, white, and blue bodily fluids. It requires that Bewitched, the Munsters, and Once upon a Time all become part of a communist plot to take over the United States because fairy tales are always inherently socialist red. It requires that Two and a Half Men become a socialist TV programme because it preaches the joys of sexual libertinism, a sexual libertinism that is undermining American virtue and the American family. It requires that Lipstick Jungle become socialist because it preaches the red, white, and blue heresy that sisters, women, can do it for themselves when they should, in good red, white, and blue fashion, stay at home and take care of the kids. It requires that Friends become a socialist plot because it praises bad old cooperative, i.e, communalistic, living in New York City. It requires that His Girl Friday become socialist propaganda because it can only be socialists who milk a murder story for fun and profit. It requires that Scarface become leftist propaganda because it has the audacity to make fun of good old All American Ebenezer Scrooge capitalism. Bah humbug. And finally it requires that King Kong become socialist because it is a communist depiction of the horrors of imperialism and the horrors of notions of white supremacy. Communism, after all, preaches equality of the "races".

This twisted world is the looney world of right wing demagoguery. This type of stupidity, of course, has been around for a long time--the John Birch Society was significant in Utah when I lived there in the 1990s--but it is becoming, thanks to the World Wide Web and its blogosphere, ever more prominent and ever more mainstream, with the help of idiot savant ideologues and demagogues like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Anne Coulter and others, at places like Fox News, Amazon.com, and Blogger.com. As we begin a New Year it is worth remembering that these twisted ideologically driven perceptions founded on a fundamental lack of understanding of history and historical evidence reveal quite clearly why we are, at least in the United States, doomed. We are doomed because of the illogical logic of C.U. Later and his ideological comrades in arms. Flee to the hills. The apocalypse has finally arrived. And remember, "there's nothing we can't face except for bunnies".

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