Archives for posts with tag: Warfare and Conflict

I showed the house for the first time yesterday.  A Persian man who lives not far from here.

He was looking for a cheap house as an investment.  I really don’t care who buys it.

I spent the morning rearranging.

I rearranged the furniture so the dining area is set above the sitting room on the terrazzo plinth.   It looks great.  I used the black leather chairs that I bought for ElCerrito Place.  I tried using the Morrison chairs but they looked too complicated.  Compromised the aesthetic.

I am going to sell my Jasper Morrison dining room chairs.  They are now stacked outside looking really forlorn, they need to go else where..where they can be loved.

Had tea with JA in West H’wood yesterday.  Everybody is in such a funk.  Things have ground to a halt.  Is this just on the West Coast?   Nobody knows how to crawl out of this hole?  Maybe we don’t crawl out of anywhere but learn to live with new parameters.

Popped in on Trevor at the bottom of the canyon to see the young doe that the coyote had savaged in his garden.  It was all gnawed at.  Its tongue sticking out.  Trevor’s wife was a bit pissed that I had made the effort to see the dead deer but not their new baby.  Sorry Jen.

Meg Whitman the ex Ebay CEO is running in the Gubernatorial race here in California against Jerry Brown.  She has spent over $119, 000, 000 of her own money on her campaign.  She becomes the largest self-funded political candidate in history.

Yet all of this might come to naught if her ex-maid and nanny of nine years Nicky Diaz Santillan swings the vote.   Nicky’s story is a familiar one in California.  An illegal immigrant (undocumented) who worked hard for Meg and her husband is cruelly let go when she asks for help to become legal.

“Thown away like trash.” she sobbed on TV.

The latino population in SoCal will take notice.  They know what that feels like.  To be part of a family, whether Witman’s or family USA only to be thrown away when things get tough.

The economy in this part of America has relied heavily on the cheap labour that these illegal immigrants offer.  Making the rich richer, they are hard-working, uncomplaining people.  I have employed Spanish-speaking men at the local labor exchange and they work tirelessly in scorching heat, lugging great hessian bags of garden waste up and down the mountains like donkeys.  I don’t ask any questions.  Nor do my neighbors.

These latino workers have no expectations, except to be treated poorly by white folk like me.  They don’t have much choice.

When they do not get treated poorly they are grateful and go the extra mile.

The truth is, frustrated white people in the USA very begrudgingly gave up their slaves so having illegal Mexican immigrants who do as they are told for very little somehow placates their desire to be slave owners.

White people may say they are pissed off by illegal immigrants yet I don’t know any one of them who would be prepared to do what these people do.  Washing up, gardening, busing, etc.  Menial tasks.  White people wouldn’t know how.  They don’t know how.

We tried to import a bunch of colourful faces into the UK to do the same during the 1950’s but they opened corner shops and restaurants and got richer than the people who imported them.  Anyway, we had colonial apologists who refused to see these people used like American white people use Latinos.

Thank GOD for bouts of socialism.

I could bang on about the racism that exists here but I can’t be bothered.

White people are hurting.  They have lost their jobs and their homes. There is no industry.  They can’t seem to relearn working skills and get humble and wash dishes for other white folk.  The dream is dead.  Arianna Huffington is on TV telling people that America is a Third World Country, that the middle class is over and that the American Dream has been compromised.

Similar circumstances existed in Germany before the second world war.  Crippling debt (war reparations) unemployment, hunger, desperation, hopelessness.  Do not underestimate the gruelling effect of hopelessness..regardless of how comfortable you are if you feel hopeless your view on the world changes.  It gets easy to blame the immigrant, the jew, the gay…the innefectual black President.

I pray that I am wrong but given the current state of the USA, these extreme economic circumstances I am guessing that the people of America will, come the next election, elect a far right, socially conservative Palin type President who will irrevocably damage the entire world.  We are desperate for strong, innovative, modern leadership yet it seems that only the far right have the balls to serve what the people hanker.

We are witnessing the cynical destruction of the USA as we, and millions before us, dreamed it.  It is a crying shame.

By the way.  Rich Sanchez the latino CNN host fired this week for saying that Jon Stewart was pompous and that the media was controlled by the Jews.  Well, that’s how it was reported.  Not quite the way he said it.  Actually he said he felt bullied by Stewart, looked down upon.  That people like Stewart look down on latinos..and he’d be right.  I am sure what he felt about Jon Stewart may very well be right.

I rather like Rick Sanchez.  Isn’t it amazing that Sanchez can get fired for saying two rather obvious things (one an opinion and one true) and that Glenn Beck gets to say terrible shit everyday but nobody lifts a finger?

Willie just took a huge dump on the carpet…nice.  Thankfully I know how to clean a rug without resorting to calling a maid service.

Nothing.  Nothing to say, write or comment on.  In my own head.   Do you know that feeling?  When life is so overwhelming?   I could not sleep last night.  Perhaps it was the cheese again.  Must stop eating cheese before bedtime.

It is easy to look over ones life and just remember the things one has lost rather than what one has found.

I am going to New York this weekend.  Staying on 10th street again.   Comfortable.

It seems like for the past few months I have made one bad decision after another.   If only I could tear myself away from the self-loathing.  To love myself enough to give the man I see occasionally in the mirror..a break.  Do you think that is possible?

I just made a huge pot of black coffee and drank it all.  Friends arriving from London today.   Dinner with Toby last night.  Saw Please Give with Katherine Keener.   It was a lovely film.  Very New York, very sad.   I shed a tear at the end.

Did I ever tell you that for a short time I was friendly with Katherine Keener?   She has a lovely house in Santa Monica, beautifully decorated with really well-chosen furniture.  She has the most amazing taste.

I tell you what is happening in my head.  I feel as if I am in some terrible competition.  A competition that I can never win because it’s not my game.   I am not like ‘them’ so I can’t win.    I feel very unsafe.  Not like I was going to die because that would be easy.  To know for sure the time and place of ones own death.

Unsafe, because I want something so badly knowing that it can never ever happen.    That something is not a person or a thing or a place but the peace of mind that has eluded me for so long.   I have learned that nothing can fix me.  Nothing can make it better.  Maybe a more complete relationship with God but to have that relationship with God I must remove the lead cap I am wearing that keeps me in the dark.

I sat in a room yesterday morning with 70 men who all looked so fucking miserable.  Every man in there just trying to make sense of what and who he was.   today, I have no idea what the answer is.

To wake up with no answers is a terrible thing.

The little dog is sleeping.   He is waiting for me to pull on my pants and take him for a long walk.  I used to think that if I could just keep on going, keep the momentum then everything would be ok but I have nothing to look forward to right now.

Just a gaping hole where a life should be.

Taking a Shit

British class shame is nothing a regular gun-toting American would or should know anything about.   Whether or not one has an understanding of manners, social hierarchy or top hats is neither here nor there.

I have spent blog time bashing America but really, the Brits are just as bad-if not worse.  My friend Pierre in New York, upon moving here at the behest of his company, missed London terribly but after a short while, much less time than I, understood why we come here and why we want to stay.   Pierre began to notice a change in himself and those around him.  He felt valued, pumped up, fearless.  In America he could feel like a man.

Like me, when he meets Brits who stay at home he marvels at their naivety.

It takes a huge amount of self-loathing to ‘know your place’.

In the USA there is no shame about bettering and reinventing ones self.  There are rules, of course, but every one of the rules (guiding principles) is designed to be broken.

You may have to pay a disgruntled employee a ton of money for a spurious sexual harassment claim but that’s how the dispossessed get their share of the pie.

Everyone is on the make, everyone!  It’s an on the make, nickle and dime affair that I am having with the USA.  It’s better than pecan pie and nuclear waste!  It’s more thrilling than Guantanamo Bay.

As a Brit I still hanker after public art and healthcare but the rampant small mindedness of my countrymen, their embittered jokes masquerading as irony, their post imperialist arrogance and their total inability to allow anyone to grow beyond the class they were born into keeps me from going back home.

I suppose for all my anti-American sentiment I love the hurly-burly, the hegemony, the extremes, the greed, the excess, the stupidity.  I love their terror of art and history.  I applaud their dogma and their denial.  I love that they think that they are the very best at everything they do when they are patently not.  I love that they behave like willful children.  I love that they think knowing about nature or food is elitist.  I love that an engaging presidential candidate can emerge from nowhere and take the world stage-where as the British produce a bunch of familiar, threadbare politicians like so many provincial repertory actors delivering lackluster performances in what passes for political theatre.   Imagine British MP’s sitting in their shared dressing-room waiting for lurid makeup to be applied before performing their ‘great scene’ during Prime Ministers Question Time.  Smoking, sinking rummers of whiskey, discussing their expense claims, squabbling over cabinet positions and who’ll wear what at the state opening of parliament.

We don’t cast our parliament terribly well.  Here they cast the Whitehouse like a huge movie.  No wonder Rahm and Ari Emmanuelle are behind Barrack.  They recognized his star potential and like a baby starlet hanging out in the Chateau Marmont plucked him from obscurity and handed him the best role ever in their box office blockbuster political thriller-so whilst the Emmanuells steal the money they got themselves the bestest alibi ever..a black president.  They got themselves a well-dressed first lady descended from slaves.  They got tears of joy at the inauguration and a divided, blind sided America whilst the spoils of the middle class were being divided up by unscrupulous hedge fund managers and Ponzi schemers betting on the downfall of their own and other nations.

So, there’s Barrack blustering over the war and the economy in his professorial tweeds, his sweet and sexy demeanor softening the hearts of the liberal elite and providing drama and focus for the next lot-the emboldened white Christian right.  There he is dithering over healthcare and everything continues just the way it was.

Am I the only one who can’t imagine Tim Geitner having sex with anyone other than himself?   He is such a WEED.

If China wasn’t running the world-this could look dangerous!

When British politicians get caught with their hand in the till-what paltry amounts of money they steal!  Awarding their friends dodgy $150,000 construction contracts and creaming a few quid and a meat pie for themselves…subsequently getting caught and fired.   An American politician wouldn’t waste his time or his position stealing so little.  Tony Blair is the only politician to get away with stealing real money.  He got away with the money and murder.  He understood what few in the UK do-that American politicians are not elected to represent their constituents but to steal as much money as they can within their 4 years in office.

And, you might ask, why shouldn’t he?  The Blair’s are just doing what the Royal family and the landed gentry have done for hundreds of years. He just took what he thought he was owed for getting to the top of the pile.  It must piss our lowly politicians off to go through all the pain of getting elected to public office and then once there, look around…bleak…lonely…underpaid.  Servants of the democracy that we hold dear and never really getting what they deserve-compared with the politicians in the USA who are on the fucking gravy train!

Drill baby drill, bailouts, healthcare, there’s money in them there policies..money for every politician in Washington, TONS OF IT!  Politicians accepting donations from whomever and where ever.

Poor old Dennis Kucinich-he’s the congressman President Obama lassoed into helping change the mind of the bold progressives who were holding out for a radical public option during the last few moments before the Healthcare Bill was forced into law.

Well, dear Dennis lives in a one room apartment in Washington…never accepts a dime from anyone..but he lives in a one-bedroom apartment with his wife Elizabeth.   If he had played his cards right, abandoned his principles and cut himself free from the people he was sent to represent then he could be living in a huge house in Georgetown-which is what the people expect by the way.  To the average American there is something vaguely retarded about a man who is able to steal the money but doesn’t.

That’s why we elected you into office!  To steal the money but, mind you, not so much that you piss the other thieves off who have seniority or think you are stealing too much.  Of course, once in a while an odd politician needs to be thrown to the lions so that the public think that the other politicians have some sort of morality.

This is America and once you get a handle on it it’s not that bad.  As long as you understand that to survive here you have to learn how to steal.  You have to learn how to lose.  Learn how to pick yourself up.  Not get trampled in the stampede.

You must definitely learn to rub belly..pat head..

New York bound.  Virgin America.  Everybody very polite.  The Rasta gentleman that I was originally sat next to smelt of cocaine.  The last time I smelt anything so repulsive was on Mike Elling’s breath at Jake and Rudi’s gayfest in Palm Springs.

Feeling very grumpy.  Wondering what the heck I am doing travelling East.  None of the reasons I thought were spectacular last week are spectacular any more.   Nobody is picking me up from the airport even though I ferry people back and forth from LAX.  They’ll be no more ferrying.   I thought I was seeing my friend on Sunday but he has reneged until Monday.   Oh Bollocks.  As we say in England.  Bloody Bollocks.

The rain that fell over LA last night was truly torrential.  We woke up to mudslides, smashed cars, and trashcans hurtling like torpedoes in two feet of storm water.  It was rather exciting.  I quite like a big storm to take my mind off the internal storm that rages within.  None of the people I am visiting this weekend are entirely appropriate for me to be visiting.  I have huge, overblown expectations and, as I described in my last post, I become closed down and broken the moment I experience any of the heady ‘love’ emotions.

I may very well just go to 12 step meetings with my friend Alexi and fuck the rest.

The most rewarding aspect to this lightening visit to NYC is the price of the plane ticket $98.  Very good value considering a taxi from JFK to Manhattan will be $45.  I may very well spite myself and take the sky train into NYC thereby risking a million questions from random civilians about Kari-Ann et al.  Actually, that’s not fair.  I get asked about Drew.  What’s he like etc.  I think they are rather disappointed to hear that he just a really sweet, empathetic guy.

With the great snowstorm comes the economic shit storm.  The markets are tanking.  Nobody is telling the truth.  Everybody looking to the ‘stock markets’ to see how a few miserable gamblers are reacting to world events.   It’s like hanging around the slot machines in Vegas trying to divine economic policy.    This country has been raped by a few cruelly greedy men who refuse the sanctioning of infra structure investment, who refuse to answer questions about who exactly has benefitted from all the money spent fighting dubious ‘wars’ in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.  Who go on threatening the taxpayer with the threat of further bailouts?  Good God, what has happened to this great country?  Even the government, with a visionary like Obama at the helm, needs a fucking hip replacement to take one step forward.

Apart from their irrational hatred of Obama and their homophobia I have a great deal of sympathy with the Tea Partiers.  Even though they are morbidly inarticulate in most instances they perfectly describe my frustration with government.  Even though they refuse to use these words, they know that their money has been misappropriated.  Stolen.  They want to know where the money went, why it went there and when the American taxpayer is going to get it back.

At the same time those weirdo tea party people are terrified of healthcare for all, which just totally baffles me.

3 more hours on this bumpy plane heading over the great white planes of Middle America.

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