Idle Thoughts On Cover Songs

The covering of another artist’s song is an homage to the original. Sometimes the cover eclipses its predecessor, like Jeff Buckley’s version of “Hallelujah.” Some covers reimagine the original, like Tori Amos’ take on “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” John Lennon said that “Across the Universe” is among his favorite Beatles’ songs, and the one whose lyrics rise to the level of poetry. Laibach does a fine live cover of that song.

As stories, popular songs are a witness to their time, and in inspired cases, prophets. The no-fault divorce gave powerful men a shot at younger wives and ordinary men paid the price. Kenny Rogers’ “Lucille” takes us to the late 1970s and feminism’s blitz. The narrator approaches a woman at a bar. She removes her wedding band and tells him that she’s looking for more than what she has. He then sees her husband walk in:

In the mirror, I saw him and I closely watched him
I thought how he looked out of place
He came to the woman who sat there beside me
He had a strange look on his face
The big hands were calloused, he looked like a mountain
For a minute I thought I was dead
But he started shaking, his big heart was breaking
He turned to the woman and said:

“You picked a fine time to leave me, Lucille
With four hungry children and a crop in the field
I’ve had some bad times, lived through some sad times
But this time your hurting won’t heal
You picked a fine time to leave me, Lucille”

The broken husband leaves, the speaker and the woman go to a motel. But he can’t perform, thinking of how he’s wronging another man. The story is set in Toledo, Ohio. That was almost forty years ago, before agribusiness, HUD-driven neighborhood wrecking, and recently, refugee resettlement. The great Waylon Jennings covers the song but his style does not do it justice. Also, none of the other performers I checked out on YouTube did the song right. In this case, the song truly belongs to the storyteller himself, Kenny Rogers.

Studying the guitar revealed to me the pleasure of watching amateur musicians cover popular songs. For example, this well done rendition of the guitar solos in Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb, which make me better understand David Gilmour’s. Another video shows a music class performing Dream Theater’s Pull Me Under. Great job on their part, and a fine instrumental analysis that song. Another musician performs Mother Love Bone’s Stargazer, delivering a low-key interpretation of Andrew Wood’s flamboyant original that paradoxically still expresses its spirit.

Sometimes a cover does not strive for novel interpretation. Brazilian band Fleesh replicates Roger Water’s Final Cut, amplifying the volcanic pathos of the original via a female vocalist, to good effect.

For the end of this post, I wanted to show a video of one of several youth choruses from Eastern Europe performing a popular song. But I decided to not do that, and instead have you imagine the optics and the easy synergy of an ethnically pure group of vocalists. My original intent was to leave things on an aspirational note, and it still is. We all have a clear understanding of neoliberalism, the evil of our time.

But do we always have a clear positive vision of what we could have? Showing a joyful chorus of bright-faced young people of one nation would evoke a pang of hunger: I want that! It no doubt would, but this point (as someone elsewhere put it), images of nothing but White people are like porn to us. And given the all-too-apt simile, by posting such a video I would be enabling prurient interest in things that belong to others. Those videos, while properly modest, are more beautiful than is proper to display.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, sometimes its pregnant absence and the imagination’s resulting effort to generate its own vision is worth even more. We on the AltRight know what we want, but do we always see it clearly?

And finally, last year Disturbed recorded their grim cover of “Sounds of Silence.” Interesting video too. Any meaning in those scenes of exodus?

What Are Liberals So Afraid Of?

The local public radio classical music station has excellent programming and good hosts, as they call their DJs. They had a fundraising drive recently. Yes, I kept the station on because the banter was engaging, and doing so learned that Erik Satie’s Trois Gymnopedies were revolutionary despite their simplicity because there is no progression in those pieces.

Then something made me raise an eyebrow — a caller pledges a generous sum and compliments the station’s hosts for keeping the listeners’ spirits high “through the frightening times we now live in.” The hostess concurred with the obvious reference to The God Emperor. She added that they strive to be an oasis of peace for their listeners, recalling how the station continued playing great classical music through the shock of 9/11. Yes, she compared that calamity to Trump’s presidency.

To flip perspectives yes, I would consider a Hillary Clinton presidency a bigger disaster than 9/11. But I can also explain why, in simple words: her administration would put the globalists in a position from which they are free to destroy us through mass immigration and free trade. They would level mankind down to its most stupid, blank-eyed third world common denominator and acid-bathe everything I value of all that’s good and beautiful.

So, can a liberal similarly explain why the presidency of Donald Trump is more frightening than a terrorist attack? Are liberals afraid of the same thing I am — globalism — except that they are working with different premises than I am, in ascribing its destructiveness to the spirit of nationalism? Or to ask this question differently, why would a patrician custodian of high culture be afraid of the regeneration of Western nations that the past four administrations had made a dire necessity of and that Trump’s presidency promises to deliver? This isn’t about one radio host at this point, but an entire class of liberal Whites.

Let’s look at twelve possible reasons for their fear of Donald Trump.

One: liberals, regardless of their class or intelligence, are herd animals. Imagine antelopes taunting a lion (to take a bit of liberty with this metaphor). They can’t help it, it’s what they do. In the wake of the Trumpenslide, it is dawning on them that the big, fleshy beast they’ve been biting and prodding all that time is now awake and is about shred them to pieces.

“The Dems have a look of rabbits that are discovering they aren’t free, independent agents…they are food.” — commenter at Vox Popoli

Two: worries about funding cuts. The liberal’s worldview is a mirror image of mine, in that we both divide the world into the light of civilization and the darkness of barbarism, but we point to different sources of barbarism. To contrast our perspectives: I believe that our civilization, my descendants’ secure place in it and their identity, as well as our nations’ cultural output, relies on the integrity of organic social pyramids with our own criminal, labor, middle, and upper classes. But while my view is expansive, accommodating of both chaos and order, populist above all (the rose needs a robust, healthy soil to bloom) the liberal’s vision is elitist and claustrophobic.

His world is a perpetual night, with light-bearing government standing as sentry between security and savagery — while to me, the savage sleeps in each of us. And more on-point in the present day, the savage arrives from the global south by land, air and sea. Look at Paris.

Drawn to their own conception of light, liberals seek out others like themselves who are elect, and recognize them by their specific markers of status, such as a proper type of education or cultural signalling. That is how liberals confirm that the person in question has a soul. They are repulsed by what they regard as their lesser compatriots, whom they consider subhuman and depressing. And for modern American liberals, the federal government and its power to hold its boot on the subhumans’ necks is the vehicle through which they — the elect — are safe. So what I am getting at, is that the liberal considers any talk of defunding federal programs an attack on the government itself and as such, an attack on the very light of civilization.

Three: all change is scary. Four: Jewish paranoia. I don’t think that the radio station’s hosts are Jews but liberals have appropriated their prejudices. (This post is about White liberals, exclusive of Jews). Five: they aren’t really afraid; they are playing to the anxieties of their donor base, which takes us back to the original question: what are their supporters so fearful of? Six: they believe all that bullshit about leftists being the nice underdogs.

Seven: like everyone in the West, they feel that something is very wrong. But unlike those of us who want to confront the problem, liberals are appeasement-oriented. Whomever they seek to appease at any given moment — placate any individuals or entities that comprise the patron-client matrix of neoliberalism — they look with horror upon Trump and the Alt-Right’s aggressive challenge to these seemingly omnipotent forces. Liberals would rather let the wolves pace about so long as we don’t give them a reason to bite, even as the animals grow bolder and meaner with each passing year.

Eight: fear of chaos, even as they play that game with us. This is another one that merits a fuller explanation. Do you believe that a race has its destiny? If so, then ours is to build and destroy, at turns. Trainspotter explains this in a long comment that I featured in my earlier post about our love of freedom:

The European soul craves more; it needs more. If necessary, it will upend and destroy the world to get that “more.” It will even destroy itself.

We’ve near-destroyed our whole world. And this brings us to an enigmatic vision of our great race. At some level liberals intuit the slow swing of the eros-thanatos pendulum because for the past seventy years, they’ve done the wrecking. The immediate reason for their fear is that for them, the big questions had been settled and the pendulum may now rest. Racism is bad, women are more equal, religion is best castrated unless it’s Islam, and White men are beasts of burden. I can appreciate the satisfaction that the liberal feels at this point, after almost a century of winning. He has imposed the victor’s non-negotiable terms, dictating a tyranny of his ideals. But there is stasis in tyranny, and that is what the liberal dreads. Which brings me to something MGE recently wrote:

trump is a chaos agent and I love it. […] white people need a bit of chaos to thrive. our allergy to stasis compels us to kick over the apple cart every now and then

Especially when we are harnessed to the apple cart from which everyone but us is grabbing the fruits.

To continue with this lengthy look at #8, allow me a tangent in which I will encapsulate the apex liberal ideal in one anecdote. A while back, a young self-described feminist is hanging out nearby. In earshot, a pleasant older woman is having a conversation with someone else about her work as an engineer. Overhearing them, the young feminist is beaming, vicariously absorbing the rays of her ideal incarnate. Me being me, I start thinking: What is so great about female engineers? I don’t mean this in a contrarian or spiteful sense; what I’m asking is, where does a world in which women are engineers lead and why would someone support that aspiration? The utilitarian calculation is clear enough to me: allowing due acceptance of peoples’ individual choices, women engineers are a negative at both micro- and macro-levels of society. They are not going to make any innovations in their fields because women don’t do that. Their intelligence could have been better passed on to their children and the bigger families that they could have had instead. A man supporting a family could have had her job and being an extra unit of labor supply, she’s depressing wages for all male engineers. But the young feminist likes a world in which women walk on air. The question remains: why?

Now, I certainly understand that we all like a lot of things for their intrinsic value, whether or not their first-causes are socially constructive. For example, some of us have slept with girls our age in our early twenties, making them worse for the men who ended up marrying them. Stealing is liberation, freedom’s depraved sister.

Not having been a saint, I am aware of my own corruption. But the liberal (a feminist in this case but this extends to all of them) does not understand net-loss. The liberal does not understand the violence against the West she supports by promoting female careerism, however passively, because she wants to bask in the gratification of a woman defying nature’s and history’s iron laws concerning the role of the female. Rebelling against laws feels like liberation, and feminism is one of the ways in which the liberal has been kicking over the apple cart.

Liberals want to keep the world in which female engineers exist as an end in itself. Even if the gorging on our social capital continues until the grain stores run empty. And this refusal to let go of liberalism is not limited to feminist advocacy. They want the world and they want it now. The liberated women, the intoxication of throwing everything away — our best of everything, our temperate lands, our beautiful genes — the orgy and the rape.

And late into the night on November 8th, chill wind hit their faces just as consummation was in reach: a recognition that we, the long-suffering and now wide-awake men of the West, have hated every single fucking moment of their joy, of having been their slaves. White man lives free or dies, and it’s dawned on us that we want to live. Liberals are terrified of our awakening because now it’s our turn.

Nine, and this is related to the previous: no more free stuff, which is strip-mined from the social capital of others. Liberalism is like nuclear fission in that its application releases and harnesses potential energy by breaking the structural integrity of an existing system, leaving behind radioactive waste. This works on global levels such as when George Soros destabilizes countries and profits on their downfall, as well as on street levels when protected-class aliens make themselves at home in our public space. The free stuff model has so many incarnations. Fat girls used to be few and they had to work on their personalities. Now they are everywhere and are bombarded with male attention, all of that to the detriment of healthy male-female dynamics. So in essence, what liberals across the spectrum might be afraid of, as the gods of copybook headings return, is the end of the feast.

Ten: they are afraid that their beliefs have been false all along. That they believed in the fantasy that man can transcend his material limits and not have to come back down.

Eleven: deportations, cleansing, bloodshed. A successful reconquista would objectively be good for Whites across the ideological spectrum for obvious reasons. (If those reasons are not obvious to some: the sole alternative to White supremacy in our own countries is White genocide, and with it, no more classical music). But the imagery of reclaiming our lands is scary because where wood is chopped, there fly splinters. And more than one liberal may be called to account for his role in race-replacement.

And twelve: the fight to the death. Members of the striver class pick up on the anxieties of the principal actors of globalism who know that if they regain power, they’ll have to break us. And they know that we know that they know. The globalist and the nationalist, two killers wrestling over one gun. Only one of us will see the next day. And having captured the presidency of the United States and the cultural momentum, we may yet win. Our ideas are the ones whose time has come, theirs are exhausted. Scores will be settled over all that they’ve ruined if we are clear-headed enough to reestablish a future for our posterity.

Borjas on Immigration in the NYT

This is an remarkable editorial by economist George Borjas, given its appearance in the New York Times. He asks the right questions; most fundamentally, the question about the impact of immigration on actual Americans. That is a departure from the ruling class’s long-established habit of ignoring that side of the equation. As reflected in their rhetoric and actions, our policy-makers regard the host population as a nullity, and a nullity does not figure into consideration beyond the most perfunctory nod to “impact on the low skilled.” And none at all in matters of compassion. The host society has no identity, much less destiny or aspiration of its own, so its place in any discussion of demographic engineering is an afterthought.

Borjas’ responses to his own questions are framed in the language of immigration-reduction rather than moratorium and reversal, so on face-value it’s business as usual. But he is speaking from a platform that calls for his audience to read between the lines. And given the forum, he delivers the payload. When the right questions are asked, the right answers are only a matter of time.

On compassion:

But what about the 11-million-plus undocumented immigrants already here? A vast majority have led peaceful lives and established deep roots in our communities. Their sudden deportation would not represent the compassionate America that many of us envision.

And he offers an answer to that question in President Trump’s own words:

“We are going to be considerate and compassionate to everyone … But my greatest compassion will be for our own struggling citizens.”

The editorial builds up to a more direct form of address:

Many of my colleagues in the academic community — and many of the elite opinion-makers in the news media — recoil when they hear that immigration should serve the interests of Americans. Their reaction is to label such thinking as racist and xenophobic, and to marginalize anyone who agrees.

And then the check-mate question:

But those accusations of racism reflect their effort to avoid a serious discussion of the trade-offs. The coming debate would be far more honest and politically transparent if we demanded a simple answer from those who disagree with “America First” proposals: Who are you rooting for?

***

I raised some of the same points last year in my farewell to jeb bush (sic).

Rest in Peace, Alan Colmes

Slate publishes a no-class obituary for their fellow liberal Alan Colmes, a Fox News presenter and Sean Hannity’s long-time debate partner who died on February 23rd. The writer criticizes Colmes for having made a career of playing patsy to conservatives’ attacks on the Democratic Party. I guess you can see the writer resenting Colmes for being their side’s equivalent of a political cuck.

Where is the line between a just vs. a crass eulogy to someone you have strong differences with? I celebrated Ted Kennedy’s croaking with a raised glass, and I will do the same with everyone in my Death Pool when they die. Are professional writers held to a different standards than bloggers, or is it a matter of distinguishing between enemies and merely men with whom we disagree? Or is it something else?

I’ve watched Alan Colmes on Fox every evening from 1999 to 2001 and never saw him arrogant, dishonest, or hateful. He was simply a liberal who treated those he differs with like fellow-citizens. For example, he once interviewed a White Nationalist on his radio show. Even as he pressed her on their philosophical differences, he treated her kindly — maybe because he knew that his professional on-air skills outmatch hers.

We all could live well in a country in which liberals had taken a few lessons from someone who consistently rose above the media’s program of dehumanizing anyone who dissents from their latest ideological memorandum. Imagine a liberal wing of American politics that seeks to persuade in good faith, rather than make war on core Americans. Such an approach would look like that of Alan Colmes.

Rest in peace.

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Image source: FoxNews.com

Kieslowski’s Women

Documentary filmmaker by training, Krzysztof Kieslowski had expressed an array of moral themes through female beauty at least since his Decalogue television series (1988). International audiences first saw his eye for detail and its power to render inscrutable concepts in 1991’s The Double Life of Veronique. The film follows the lives of two women at their crossroads, each played by Irene Jacob: Veronique, who makes the necessary compromises and lives, and Weronika, who flies too close to the sun and falls:

In Blue, the fist installment of the three-color trilogy (1993-1994), Kieslowski works with the earthy Juliette Binoche. The hardness of her character lets her survive a horror that would have destroyed a weaker woman, but the story is about her letting go of her pride to find grace in humility:

In White, Julie Delpy’s angelic radiance belies her cruelty. An even more cruel comeuppance makes her a woman again. In this flashback scene, she’s downright beatific:

Red once again features Irene Jacob personifying feminine selflessness. As I mentioned in an earlier post, there is a scene in which Jacob’s character tells her confidante, a cynical retired judge, that her younger brother is a heroin addict and she wants to help. His advice to her: Être. Just be. She’s confused by his answer, so he repeats: être. As I also noted then, this is not over.

Each of the installments of the trilogy focuses on its respective theme liberté, égalité, and fraternité. That said, I see another dimension to Kieslowski’s nominally Revolutionary themes: a vision that a reunified Europe had an opportunity to become whole by reconciling its humane but frivolous half with its spiritually raw, debased other half.

Short-term, things have worked out a bit differently, but the trilogy ends on a prophecy. Foreshadowing the present cataclysm, the events in Red culminate with a tempest and a new day for its survivors.

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Cutting to the Chase with Cucks

There is a proper time to deliver a perspective-changing truth by way of a simple statement. By cucks, what I mean right here is ordinary people who aren’t bad, they just oppose President Trump because our political revolution is so outside of their experience. They are sometimes older people with a narrow comfort zone, sometimes too golly-gee in their conservative temperament to process the idea of The God Emperor getting things done. Many have internalized the decades of liberal messaging to the point of fearing any overt political advocacy on their behalf. Unlike with SJWs, who are best cut from your life, reaching these people is worth a shot.

Objections to Trump we’ve all heard from such individuals:

  • “He’s a clown.”
  • “Melania’s past photos.”
  • “He’s racist.”
  • “He hates women.”
  • “I’m worried about his rhetoric.”

Complex arguments won’t reach them, because you’re up against an immovable wall of mental habit. Even if you make a persuasive case, one minute later they’ll forget everything you said. Batting down their individual objections is a waste of time.

Instead, have a dead-serious expression, look him or her in the eye, and say:

“Listen to me. The world is on fire. It’s going to destroy all of us. Here and now, Donald Trump is the one chance we’ve got.”

The Battle Flag

cgb1I don’t know anything about the folks who run that place, except this: we’re on the same side.

This is a great time to walk up to people and shake their hands, tell them “love the flag, sir.” Give them your business, recommend them to others. Flags and colors signal allegiance. We talk about networking in real life, and it begins with a friendly approach.

“Any time I see an American flag or a Trump sign, I know I have a friend in that house.” — Lara