[Please Note: The March 11th The Daily Growler was found to be so badly edited we almost sent a horse to the glue factory. Did you know horses could cry? Anyway, the March 11th post is now fairly well edited--by another Growler who is definitely not a horse--not that babe--worth horsing around with though!]
It's So Nice to Be Filthy Rich
I'm laughing my ass off this morning, laughing at all the ironies buzzing like flies around my head--like in the midst of our current economic chaos, still the construction of an 18-story hotel goes on voraciously and assiduously next door to my apartment, another hotel among hotels being constructed on almost every block of invaded Manhattan--and they're (private equity firms; Communist China; British & their former colonies like India & the Arab States (a British insurance firm (Willis) just bought the Sears Tower in Chicago)) going on with these buildings is like spitting in the face of the people who have resided and worked and socialized in Manhattan some for all their lives, the rest of us most of our lives. We consider ourselves due some respect since we've lived in this city, yes, but we've earned our livings in this city, have paid multitudes of taxes and billions of dollars of rents and now as we are daily losing our jobs, going bankrupt, having to give up our apartments or pay higher rents the landlord's demanding, and now we hear that some big landlords are bailing out on their mortgage payments and the banks and private equity groups are taking over the buildings and, of course, immediately kicking all the tenants out, blah, blah, blah. I've growled myself hoarse (or horse as we old-time proofreaders used to let slip in meanness, leaving "hoarse" "horse"--"Ah, Jeez, did I miss that?" Go to an aside: [Donald Trump, for instance, is a big New York City landlord (he inherited a real estate business from his already multimillionaire father) and he's bankrupt (cashless for sure) as I type this--and he is overinvested now in Manhattan hi-rise-luxury condo/hotel projects--he's up and down Manhattan with these tacky (cheaply built) projects. His interest payments on all the successful projects he's remortgaged over and over must be enormous--and he's out of cash right now--devoting his time to hustling his real estate course on infomercial teevee and then back to really trumping up his, as he says, #1 lamebrain teevee show--but then Trump is perpetually in bankruptcy courts, which is how he survives--like I said, he remortgages his income-producing properties over and over to bail out his mostly loser investments, like his consistently losing gambling casinos in Atlantic City--investment troubles brought about when The Donald built the extremely gawdy (remember Trump is a dumb hick in terms of intellect and aesthetics) Taj Mahal at enormous overcosts--Trump went bankrupt over the Taj Mahal right after it was built and his real estate buddies bailed him out of that one. The elderly Taj is now so tacky the city and the neighboring casinos want it demolished).] l
A big Cat (we used to call them back hoes) shovel has been digging out the future basement of this hotel being built next door to me for going on now five months--and now that Cat shovel's roar has been joined by a chorus of woodpecker-like hammerers--yep, the ancient hammer has been brought on the site now and the hammerers are hammering away merrily, hammering nails into wood, all kinds of wood, timbers and plywood--for what, who knows? and they hammer away like woodpeckers pecking down a redwood tree from 7 am until nowadays around 4 or 4:30 pm. Development. Progress.
To an old Manhattanite this reconstructing this city is all so sad, even deleterious to my health when you think of all the ancient dirts these projects are digging up--besides this project nextdoor to me there are currently over a block from me on Sixth Avenue two big basement dig outs going on, one for a 62-story (probably) hotel and the other for a 72-story (definitely) hotel, and you can occasionally smell fresh-disturbed earth smells in the air--I get whiffs of this dirt dust in my apartment a couple of times a day.
It's a shame to me also that Mayor Billionaire Bloomburg is even deciding to change the way the streets run in Manhattan now. Mayor Bloomburg is mall crazy--his big project when Rudi "Mussolini" Guiliani handpicked Bloomie to be our next mayor--Bloomburg idolized Guiliani and even New Yorkers were Guiliani nuts at the time (White people loved Guiliani because they truly believe he brought crime statistics (read: black and Latino crime statistics) down in the city--also he went after Black young people and Black welfare families with a vengeance and Whites loved him for that--oh did I forget to tell you, New York City Whites are stone racists?) so because of Rudi's blessings, Bloomburg got to be mayor--and one his first dream projects was called "Bloomburg Mall," a plan which would have reconstructed the whole west side of NYC from 34th to 47th, turn all of that into a long mall full of trendy stores and hotels and hotels (the pink elephant tacky Javitts Center (Ed Krotch's legacy to Manhattan) is in this area) and hotels and office towers and more hotels. But we haven't heard much about that recently. But now the mayor has somehow sneaked under our noses a plan to rerun our streets. The mayor doesn't like the fact that Broadway doesn't follow the grid plan--Broadway slices diagonally from the southeast tip of Manhattan up and on out the northwest end of the island. One big problem with this is where Broadway slices across 7th Avenue in the heart of Times Square. Bloomburg and the reat estate-boom boys have successfully turned Times Square into a tourist site--"Come see Times Square!" all the travel posters say and yet the Times Square once so revered by New Yorkers is no longer that Times Square, the Times Square these rube tourists are coming to NYC to see--the old Times Square full of show-biz people eating at Howard Johnson's or the successful ones entabled over at Sardis, or if you get really nostaligic: meeting someone under the clock at the Astor, or looking up at the amazing Candian Club sign as it blazed atop the tower of stacked neon signs that sat atop the Latin Quarter nightclub (now a hotel), those signs flashing and dancing in glittering scrolls all around Times Square which at one time really was the home of the New York Times, the original Times Square skyscraper, the old Times Building, still standing at the crossroads of Seventh Avenue and Broadway at 42nd, except it's not housed the NYTimes for 50 years now (just read today where the New York Times is having to lease out 30 floors of their new tower since the paper is going in the hole faster and faster day by day--remember, suddenly newspapers are facing extinction--think about that!) and has been resided, a layer of modern designed prefabbed paneling shrouded over the original Gothic-like tower, the first time when it became the Allied Chemical Building and presently it's been so resided you can no longer even guess at the old building's original shape--it now houses one of the major TV networks studios--and it still has the news scrolling around and around its tops and below it in the Square is still the statue of Father Duffy--or have they taken Father Duffy down by now? (I don't know, I hate Times Square now)--anyway, Times Square's no longer what hinterlanders and Euro trash read about it when they were kids or are told about it in the travel ads. I suppose tourists come to see Times Square now because it's the place New Yorkers used to traditionally go on New Year's Eve--and poor old Times Square now is so tacky and crowded with plastic-sided or plasma-screen-sided hotels and Planet Hollywood crap and House of Blues crap and a WWE (rasslin') store and Disney stores and more hotels and Reuters tacky-tacky new headquarters (Reuters is rich?), all plastic and plexiglas tackiness and big plasma screen animated advertisements (like skylight over the strip in Vegas) flashing down at you--or there are multi-story signboards showing local and network teevee celebrities (there's Martha Stewart; Rachel Ray; David Letterman; why look, there's Jay Leno's replacement, the loser Conan O'Brien (not a funny man, though he once was a pretty funny comedy writer) with their stupid mugs gigantic and horsetoothy, all of 'em phony smiling a condescendingly inane look down their noses at the ant-like public waving like wheatfields in a high wind up and down and across and over the whole of Times Square--now so tacky, so crowded, so jammed with hustlers and pickpockets and strange beings from the outer spaces of the world here in New York City to gawk at our achievements, to shop, and to visit Ground Zero, that sacred place--and these tourists come here and they waste their money overpaying for hotel rooms and then they find they have no money left to eat in even the hotel restaurants much less the overpriced tourist-ripoff places so they end up packing the many Burger Kings and McDonalds and Wendys and KFCs that are like weeds around the fields of Times Square and as a result the streets of Times Square are floating in take-out junk-food garbage, discarded plastic and paper cups, the paper wrappers off the bad hamburgers, those little cardboard contraptions french fries come in, the paper and plastic sacks it all comes in, or those Styrofoam cartons--and also tourists are standing in long lines waiting to buy some street food, some dirty-water dogs or rats on sticks or Islamic fafala and gyros--greasy lamb totally corrupted with white sauce and hot sauce and now barbecue sauce.
And I laughed my ass off all day yesterday, too. I laughed at US politicians and laughed at what a burlap bag of untamed wildcats they are--and I say, laughingly, We the People should dump that burlap bag in the Potomac--or maybe take it out beyond the three-mile limit and add it to the Atlantic Ocean's big-wide floating-around-the-world garbage dump.
I'm laughing my ass off, too, at how easily Chaos has sneaked in and grabbed control of every situation we now face, that awesome unknown we call the future--and I'm laughing my ass off at how we're still unaware of how necessary it is for us to get up off our lazy asses and motivate at least--and I admit I'm a lazy son of a bitch when it comes to moving fast in the face of change. I was condemned by my mother to being a Procrastinator. But we all do need to move our asses against these pricks, you know, in order to get control of change you have to work at it--change has to be revolutionary--it needs some order to control it enough to revolutionarily govern it so it will get back on a right directional track instead of deciding to wander off into the realm of Chaos, like we've done and are obediently doing.
In the meantime, how 'bout some good ole Amurican good news: how about this: Billy Boy Gates and Sweet Melinda Gates have regained top-dog spot in the Power Elite's "Richest Man in the World" Major League standings--they've beat out dear old pal Warren "Junk Bond" Buffett and Mexico's cocaine-king Telephone Co. Monopoly Privileged Power Elite asshole Senor Slim (or is that Senor Slime?) for the top spot--though Billy's worth has taken a hit--he's down from 60 billion to 40 billion--Buffett's down from 60 million to 32 million (no wonder this son of a bitch is parading around the networks with his dire predictions for our economic future--I see, now that future involves him, too). Look at the billions Billy Boy Gates has wasted with his "world-saving" projects. His plan to stop AIDS failed. His big plan to change the world's education systems has failed. All back-burner shit now as Billy Boy wrestles with how to get some fresh billions into his coffers--maybe from the sales of his rather shaky 1st edition of his Vista operating system. XP Pro was about as good a system as Billy Boy's slaves ever devised, but, nope, the Global Marketplace Quantitative Management boys say you gotta upgrade brands or change them completely every six months to keep people having to rebuy. Like how many new brands of I-Pods does Steve Jobs keep bringing every six months! Remember the original I-Pod buyers paid $600 for them then Steve knocked the price down to $400.
Alvin Toffler and his wife Heidi began dealing with this problem of what they called future shock (a phrase coined by the Tofflers that is now in Webster's) in the first book of a trilogy they had planned, that first book appropriately called Future Shock. In that book they talked about a coming traumatic shock, a technological shock to the human psyche, and what We the People had to do in terms of conditioning our psyches (Toffler is a Sociologist--also associated with Maslow psychology) in order to endure these life-changing shocks.
Here's how Toffler defines "future shock":
"Toffler's shortest definition of future shock is a personal perception of "too much change in too short a period of time". The concept of future shock bears resemblance to the late 20th/early 21st century concept of "the technological singularity", and may have been influenced by Kuhn's concept of a paradigm shift."
Toffler in recent years has become fascinated with the speed of change that is taking us into this clogged and chaotic world of computers, the Internet, blogging, emailing, text messaging, and the tons of "right and wrong" information that is floating around in cyberspace wily-nily; what's the impact of all of this high-speed technological almost perpetual change on our personalities?--like in the Toffler's latest book called Revolutionary Wealth they explain how people will have to learn new professions and crafts in order to make a living in this high-tech, high-speed future--always new ways of communicating coming online--new ways of teaching and learning--even new languages to deal with (and translations of old languages into these new languages); new maths to deal with, etc. Toffler, and I've not really read anything he's written since Future Shock, says in Revolutionary Wealth (2006) that "the future is not for the fainthearted" and this is the point I'm gradually, in my snail-writing way, getting too. All of us human beings are in for a whirlwind ride full of changing excitements and stimulations! Chaos remember is mostly an accumulation of accidentals--it's full of trash and treasures of all kinds; it's full of misinformation and useful information as well; it's full of detours, dead ends, but also superhighways; its constantly being revised by itself or its journyers, revisionists, laissez faireites, a new avante garder with tons of rewritten histories, discarded experiments, successful experiments, thrown away designs, a lot of technical excrements--even the possibility of making energy out of our shit--just think of the tons of human crap manufactured every second of every day--HOLY SHIT.
WOW, how exciting is it becoming as our spaceship earth enters into the many zones of Chaos, the real Universe, and as I say, the universe of the true God, the true Creator: the Lord Chaos--from Chaos came everything--so isn't it natural we end up right back at the beginning again, facing distinction, facing having to evolutionarily figure it all out again through futurists's projections. It's time for a New World Order--old Pappy Bush was right--but a New World Order based on an accumulation of medians, little and big Sigmas, the following of frequency distributions and continuum's and where those continuum's are continuing to take us--thus the place and time for the modern soothsayers, the Futurists, to measure distances into that future that only the stronghearted can endure. I'm thinking, how happy is old Henry Miller right now! Henry Miller's novels introduced me to Chaos and the Cosmococcic World.
Alfred Toffler says something I found entertaining, he says teevee reality shows act out the most unreal reality there is, except it's the reality of what we think the American Dream life REALLY is. Of course, as Toffler says, reality has nothing to do with hot casting couch babes pillow fighting in some Hollywood-staged fabby Hollywood Hills setting or laying in a filmed bed worrying about which hunk or hot babe in the reality show they're gonna fake fuck on some "future" episode! We've set up a false reality in this country--and that includes the reality of Wall Street and the Presidency and Congress and We the People--we live under clouds of illusions. It has led us into Chaos. Now let's see us get out of this mess. As Oliver Hardy used to frustratingly say to Stan Laurel after Stan had totally fucked up whatever it was they were being in a film, "Now look at the mess you've gotten us into."
for The Daily Growler