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Rhetorical Address to Gun-loving Bunker Hunkerers

By Hal Robins
Thursday, August 9, 2012 7:24 EDT
Guns and Ammo via Wikipedia Commons

So it’s happened again.

But it can, after all, be reliably predicted.

Soon, once again, a psychopath, armed to the teeth, will kill a large number of people, trending to be a larger number each time.

Periodically in the news cycle, becoming an accepted part of the background of our interconnected lives, accepted reluctantly, because of the knowledge that it happens, the thing happens.

With each new public atrocity, we trudge through the various stages, the call for self-examination, the wailing and gnashing of teeth, the sackcloth and ashes.

The timid, quasi-anti gun editorials tentatively submitted to public discourse, then resoundingly smacked down by the vigorous, robustly pro-gun Right.

Then the coda– the editorial conclusion: we throw up our hands in defeat. Nobody challenges the NRA.

And when you hear the voices on talk radio, read the inflamed commentary on the Internet, a number of implied beliefs emerge from the gestalt of the pro-gun side.

Most curious among these is the implication– sometimes the open assertion –that the right to own and shoot guns is also the right to armed revolt against… the U.S. Government. Obama. The Feds.

This self-aggrandizing fantasy is, you bet, a wishful dream of power by those who actually feel impotent to halt changes they don’t like.

It expresses itself , as we know, in the fetishizing of guns, so beautifully made, so successful at what they do.

Guns which can throw fatal force a superhuman distance, to deadly effect, with the God-like power to smite and strike down…

But you know what, you guys?

No matter what kind of arsenal you’ve managed to put together in your own private Libertarian Fort Survivalist –there’s no way to avoid this, any way you look at it– you’re outgunned.

This seems so obvious. I mean, look, what if you’ve even got a few tanks squirreled away, armor-piercing rounds, heat-seeking missiles, you name it–

The government has more cool weaponry than you do.

It can defeat nations. It can certainly defeat you.

Like the late, lamented Branch Davidians, you will be overwhelmed. That is the way it is.

So what is really the point?

Does the fantasy include dying heroically? Like Davy Crockett, at the Alamo?

Leave civil war to the re-enactors.

It’s just as Goya said– the Sleep of Reason sure does produce Monsters.

Nerds don’t need you

By Pete Goldie
Monday, August 6, 2012 16:03 EDT

Last night nerds shut down the Internet. To be accurate, some clouds of sport and p0rn remained online, but the only tubes that mattered went through NASA, or to be more specific, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The NASA spokesperson was quick to apologize for the overload, however in true PR cluelessness, she missed the irony of 1) apologizing for success, 2) apologizing on the medium that was offline, and finally 3) suggesting that anyone who…


Mars ‘Curiosity’: Empty Pipelines and Promises

By Pete Goldie
Friday, August 3, 2012 22:08 EDT

This Sunday night millions of people worldwide will be glued to their media delivery systems watching not (just) the Olympics, but the most ambitious and daring interplanetary landing ever. The Mars Science Laboratory created by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory will land on Mars at 10:31pm PDT. The unanimous hope of…


The secret life of TV commercials

By John Shirley
Monday, July 23, 2012 19:19 EDT

TV commercials that reveal a sickness A couple of dandelions force their way up through cracks in the sidewalk—just two yellow wildflowers looking for the sun. A tall, rawboned white guy stalks up; he’s armed with the weed killer Round Up, instead of a six-gun. He spots the dandelions—and turns…


Who is ‘Bandar Bush’ ?

By Roxanne Cooper
Sunday, July 22, 2012 18:58 EDT

Bob Woodward laid it out in State of Denial: George W. pulled Bandar aside. “Bandar, I guess you’re the best asshole who knows about the world. Explain to me one thing.” “Governor, what is it?” “Why should I care about North Korea?” Bandar said he didn’t really know. It was…


Batman and the painful irony of the Colorado movie theater shooting

By John Shirley
Friday, July 20, 2012 13:21 EDT

The painful irony… All those people, including children, were shot dead by an armed lunatic at a Dark Knight screening. Many others were maimed and some more may die. It’s a cruel tragedy—and everyone’s heart goes out to the families of victims. President Obama immediately appeared in public, and spoke feelingly,…


Guthrie-inspired Roots-Folk fest

By Roxanne Cooper
Sunday, July 15, 2012 0:37 EDT

In honor of the Woody Guthrie centennial, we’ve put together a little Raw Story music fest. Hopefully, it won’t sound too much like your local PBS pledge night. First up — The Seekers. My mother had this record and played it incessantly when I was a litte one. Paul Robeson’s…


(You can’t) meet the Billboard Liberation Front

By Summer Burkes
Thursday, July 12, 2012 6:12 EDT

In the mid-’90s, one day soon after having migrated from Dixie to San Francisco, this writer stumbled upon an odd and interesting advertisement whilst strolling the Mission District near the armory. A billboard on the side of a Victorian corner-store prominently featured a saluting soldier in dress blues, captioned with…


Can you beat him?

By Earl Yazel
Wednesday, July 11, 2012 8:47 EDT

The eloquent remark from the YouTube channel this comes from bears repeating, here : “Rainbow Bunchie aka. Final Boss of Internet jumping for 10 hours ..Can you beat him?” Of course, if one cannot fathom why this video is not at least of some very general importance regarding the culture,…


John Law and Last Gasp announce Cacophony Society history book

By Summer Burkes
Sunday, July 8, 2012 18:30 EDT

Finally, those on the West Coast who’ve memorized the genealogy of pranksterism and how it spills out continuously into the mainstream can rest their flapping gums: A book concerning The Cacophony Society’s proto-history is coming out. Fans of Last Gasp already know the underground publishing house’s books are always richly…