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[Watch this space for: Pentagon and Petroleum, The Media is only as Liberal as the Corporations Who Own Them, Wash Down With, and Recalcify]


Sunday, May 25, 2003


The Absurdity Matrix .1

Americans are so deluged with the ridiculous these days that it is impossible to keep up. We were flabbergasted over 2 years ago when our presidential office was wrestled away in a multi-faceted coup and our open jaws have only gotten dull spasms from being open so damn long since.

As Tom Tomorrow denotes, it's all enough to make your head explode.

We all know that in ten years some cute little coffee table book will be made which sifts out all of the most absurd actions of our day and cuts them up into easily manageable reading-bits. I.e.: President-Select who was AWOL stays an aircraft carrier in the ocean for one extra day after committing them to a war based on a lie when they want nothing more than to get home to their families, at a million dollar taxpayer expense, just to fly in in a fuckin' pilot suit with socks stuffed down your pants to get slaphappy with the cuckholded servicemen and all the American media shouts: TOP GUN!

Kurt Nimmo is right, absurdity must have reached it's peak. If we don't slide back into a more empirical attitude toward dealing with the world then the concept of universal balance must be a crock. You want good, solid evidence? You want good, solid facts? I will sell you their meaning for 10 dollars. Exchange for other words which sound better and quicken the blood. Whatever.

But instead of waiting ten years I will slow things down and give you an example, now: "Moore bowls over some key facts."

This is the title of the article. Note that the title doesn't say: "Moore accused of thwarting facts," which would be a more balanced approach (assuming this attack on Moore's movie is newsworthy in the first place, such as it is). Apparently, the journalist has already made up his mind. 'Moore bowls over some key facts.' Done deal. The rest of the actual article body is superfluous now--case closed; go home.

But we must persist--what was the evidence that this journalist had that gave him such a damning opinion?

Here's one piece of it:

[Moore critic] Hardy strongly disagrees with Moore's assertions about Canada, especially the claim that we can buy as much ammunition as we want at Wal-Mart outlets. He points out something that a Canuck lover like Moore should have known: Canadian law requires all ammo buyers to present proper identification, and non-Canadians must have both picture ID and a gun importation permit.

Now, if we didn't already know anything else about this particular point of dissent, let's look at the two opposing views presented in this paragraph: 1) Moore claims that in Canada, you can buy as much ammo as you want in Wal-Mart. 2) Canadian law requires ammo buyers to present proper ID and a gun importation permit if you're not Canadian.

Now, this is supposed to be evidence refuting a Moore claim? Number 2 doesn't even mention the main point of number one: buying as much ammo as you want. Number 2 just tells you about needing id and maybe a permit--which, at least on the face of this paragraph, is not even linked to the amount of ammo bought. It would seem apparent to a logical reader that as long as you have the right paperwork, you can buy as much ammo as you want in Canada.

Example two:

Hardy makes many other anti-Bowling points, but he misses one that is made elsewhere on the Web: even the title of the movie is inaccurate. According to police, Harris and Klebold didn't go bowling the day of the shootings; they skipped their bowling class because of their rampage. (Moore contests this, saying that at least five witnesses, including their teacher, saw one or both of them at the bowling alley.)

Ok, so let me get this straight: the cops say Harris and Klebold didn't go bowling that day, but Moore says 5 witnesses (including a teacher) say they did. Well, I guess if you've read the headline already you'd know that Moore is already the one with his ethics impugned, so of course the cops are right and Moore is lying--it's not a case of conflicting statements, it's the word of the cops versus an obvious liar, right? Memo to populace: "Cop Word Trumps All. Especially When Dealing With Leftie Freaks."

I mean, this must be the rock solid case positively bursting with deadly and damning evidence for Pete Howell to get up on the roof of his insurpassable moral tower and sadly proclaim:
We do indeed live in "fictitious times," as Moore observed, and it would seem he's part of the problem.

Or perhaps the Toronto Star is going pomo on our ass, deliberately fusing the heretofore uncombinable categories of article and editorial, previously unthinkable to traditional newspapers. Or, perhaps, this whole way of presenting an arguable piece of "news" has something to do with item number two of this newspaper's founding principles:
Social Justice: Atkinson [paper founder] was relentless in pressing for social and economic programs to help those less advantaged and showed particular concern for the least advantaged among us.

Which would explain perfectly why this godawful excuse for a hatchet piece was written in the first place, yes? George Bush stands for helping "those less advantaged among us" and Michael Moore is his diabolical opposite. George W. Bush lies to a nation and the world as an excuse to invade another country already devastated by a decade of sanctions--in the process unhinging the democratic relationship between the US and the majority of the rest of the world (not to mention the thousands of lives lost, sprayed across windshields and dirt)--and yet it's one of Bush's number one critics who is designated to be attacked for his truthfulness on evidence that couldn't convict a common housefly of being low on the evolutionary ladder?

These are absurd times, ladies and gents. And, in the cultural flavor of said times, we suppose that you could even call it this: the Absurdity Matrix.

[next up on the Absurdity Matrix Webwatch: "Hipublicans?"]

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