American Meat Circus
This was a watershed day for American capitalism in that it provides a perfect snapshot of the foul degradation, the vile selfishness, the rampant consumerist impulses (one imagines that it is similar to that which drives pederasts) so meticulously nurtured by Madison Avenue and Wall Street and delivered like a mainline spike of smack through the televison set and directly into the already over-ripened and putty soft gourds of a decadent and doomed society. The carnage at the Valley Stream Wal-Mart in Long Island should provide definitive proof to even those who still skip down their white picket fence lined primrose paths to perdition that we have devolved into nothing more than savages, it may have been in a high tech big box emporium of debt slavery but it could have been something right out of Braveheart. The Pollyana’s can no longer deny it with their silly-assed American optimism, the ‘grab the tiger by the tail’ spirit of good ole made in the USA can-do-ism, the insipid little litmus test of ‘the glass is half empty or half full’ or any of that other fetid, rotten and oversimplistic horseshit but we are in the final stages of a total systemic breakdown, devolution and a pathological perversion of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in which food and shelter have been replaced by such baubles as $69 10.2 megapixel digital cameras, $97 GPS systems, $698 42-inch plasma portals throug which god speaks, $2 DVDs (a nice form of bread and circuses in these horrid times), Madden 09 for the X Box 360 for the paltry sum of $30, $28 Bissell upright vacuums and the granddaddy of all glorious prizes – the $199 X Box 360 arcade counsel with a free Guitar Hero III along with a wireless gittar. These are but a few of the items featured in my special Thanksgiving Day newspaper insert from Wal-Mart – subtitled – and I shit you not – “Save money. Live better”.
That is unless your name happened to be Jdimytai Damour who was crushed to death by an out of control mob that was incited by hooligans behind a handmade “Blitz Line Starts Here” sign as the term ‘door busters’ took on a whole new meaning. The 34 year old Damour, a temporary worker for the holiday season was crushed like an anti-government protester in Tiananmen Square under megatons of corn chip fed American beef on the hoof, a stampede of sinners and losers whose motive for murder could be reduced to any number of the bargains from that little “Save money. Live better” advertising insert. It was a horrific scene according to eyewitness accounts: “rabble”, “savages”, “out of control” and “utter chaos” were among some of the descriptive terms used by shoppers. The truly heinous thing was that when the local police and management team tried to shut the store down the rampaging hordes would have nothing to do with it and just kept on loading their gray plastic buggies with $128 Blu-ray players, $9 Incredible Hulk DVDs and the aforementioned bullshit along with wine, beer and cold medicine. As legend has it the band played on the as the good ship RMS Titanic went down and the authorities were as helpless as those poor doomed bitches and bastards who slowly froze to death in those icy North Atlantic waters. You know, as much of a critic of the looming police state here in Der Heimat that I have been I wouldn’t have hesitated one second in pumping that store full of tear gas canisters and turning the firehoses on the scum as they crawled retching into the parking lots – what happened in that store was inhuman, pathetic and cruel beyond every acceptable definition of civilized human behavior.
The Wal-Mart stomp was an ominous sign for a country already plagued with economic angst, a spoiled and gluttonous populace who don’t know the meaning of the word ‘NO’ and have never been made to experience any sort of frugality, privation or austerity as their grandparents and great grandparents had during the era of the Great Depression and are on the brink of a new global mega-depression. They are already angry, paranoid and driven by a free floating fear that is once again being jacked up by the military industrial complex and their crackerjack pocket media that provides 24/7 propaganda that has served America turkey dinner with a nice big side helping of terror courtesy of the unfortunate but serendipitous Mumbai massacres ( a few Americans and Jews got most of the press when it came to the body count because nobody else really is fucking human anyway but that is a story for another time) despite the huge toll of non-Christian brown people whose greatest sin was wanting to be like Americans in their lifestyle of plenty in a country of largely third world squalor with the exception of offshoring Meccas like Mumbai and Bangalore. It all makes for a toxic mix with looming food shortages, rising crime rates. a teeming homeless population and no job prospects other than that of minimum wage matador at your local Wal-Mart superstore.
And when things really do get ugly, which they inevitably will given the sad state of Murka in the post-Bush years you can count on the underclass, the lumpen proleterian, the Sarah Palin true Americans to take their traveling freak shows on the road and rest assured that Valley Stream can be viewed through those star spangled, god is on our side Kawasaki 704 lenses as a training film for when the turds really hit the whirring blades and the stakes are one fuck of a lot higher than bagging the latest fucking version of Guitar Hero on Blu-ray. Honorable mention for the most emblematic Murkan incident of Black Friday were the filthy little freaks who got into a shooting war at a Palm Desert, California Toys R Us store.
In a little coda to this piece, the first that I have done in awhile I feel it necessary to confess that on this very day, Saturday 11/29/08 one day after Black Friday that I was compelled to visit my local shopping mall as well as a chain store or two. I don’t make it a habit of going to the mall, quite frankly it disgusts me and gives me the creeps, if the devil himself was out laying poison bait then it would be in America’s shopping malls where he could bag his limit of wayward souls. But then again, the soul hunt would provide slim pickings though in this sordid and rotting post 9/11 wasteland for there is little left to be had as far as souls go, they have already been sucked out by the machine. We are a nation of fearful sheep, hateful lemmings, good Germans, television lobotomized zombies and ‘me firsters’ seeking to consume, consume and then sprint to the vomitories so as to return to consume more. Husks of human beings shuffle about in huge air conditioned shopping malls trying to fill their god shaped holes with cheap sweatshop produced clothing and Chinese made consumer electronics, compact discs and those wonderful new Blu-ray movies that will have the trendy scrambling to replace their hundreds of DVDs with the newer and more expensive versions. As Mencken once said “Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public” and every mall in this country should have that chiseled in stone on the façade an updated spin on “Arbeit macht frei” for the American Heimat. The shuffling, overweight throng a large percentage gibbering into cell phones about trivialities will shamble from chain store to food court to chain store shopping like the good little patriotic monkeys that they are. They will rack up all of this shit on their burgeoning ledgers of debt, purchased with plastic, the magnetic strips recording the usurious borrowing and ensuring that the passage to perdition has been booked. It is our national destiny.
I noticed an uneasy tension among the clerks and in my truly unique sense of humor I made it a point to jokingly invoke the Wal-Mart mob stomping just to elicit their reactions and to observe. As a whole they seemed burned out, toasted and fried from their own long hours over the past two days – none of our local malls here in the Tampa-St. Pete metropolitan area enjoyed quite the infamy (which is a welcome change considering that Florida regularly leads the nation in freakish and violent incidents) as Long Island or Palm Desert so just an endless parade of idiots, viciously cruel maxed-out consumers (god how inhuman that term is) and screaming, caterwauling little brats whose parents have never once whipped out the rod in the process of raising their spoiled fruits. Most clerks just shook their head, clucking their disbelief at the primal savagery become national news today. The best response was some gal at Yankee Candle who admitted at being tempted to go to the Best Buy door buster sale but didn’t want to suffer the ugly throngs who showed up before the turkey gravy had even begun to turn to gelatin and were hellbent on scoring Guitar Hero III, an X Box, the new Guns and Roses CD Chinese Democracy (which has put one hell of a burr up the chinks asses over in goonland) or some other bullshit. She just shook her head and lamented the previous day’s carnage, classically commenting – “I already have Guitar Hero II and it’s pretty good.”
I made a stop by Target, the red plastic buggies were darting around like some sort of NASCAR event but they had The Incredible Hulk on DVD for 8.99 – which beat Wal-Mart’s killer deal and nobody got killed either. I must say that I wouldn’t waste the money, the Ang Lee version is tough to beat and underrated, far superior on an intellectual basis but pearls before swine, Americans love their brainless entertainment and the more shit that blows up or is smashed to bits by a green mutant goliath with an attitude (but still looking like shit despite the millions spent on special effects) the better. I snagged a copy of the Sex In The City movie on DVD for 8.98 for my wife for Jesus’ fake birthday (I also purchased for $3.98 everyman Will Smith’s takeoff on Charlton Heston’s classic 70’s sci-fi flick The Omega Man -at least it used the original’s title “I Am Legend”) and headed directly for checkouts. I stopped momentarily, transfixed and somewhat hypnotized by the wall of televisions, all playing the exact same fucking action movie in the electronics department but broke free and made a detour towards the grocery section where I also threw a twelve pack of Samuel Adams fine Cherry Wheat beer into my red plastic cart. I am slightly halfway through that beer now and finishing up this plaintive wail of a melancholy blog posting against the inhabitants of planet shit and the rapid deterioration of the land that I knew in my younger days. I suppose I’ll drink the rest and stumble into the kitchen for some leftover turkey, jellied cranberry sauce, pickles, deviled eggs, jumbo black olives and a nice slab of pecan pie ala mode….then I’ll drag my fat ass to my sofa and lie there watching reruns of The Sopranos or whatever shitty NHL game happens to be on tonight until I pass out…
Good Night, and Good Luck…at least there are real NFL games on tomorrow.