Text Written by Mike Hill of TOMBS
At some point, I saw the Tony Scott, vampire movie called “The Hunger” which features David Bowie and Catherine Deneuve, but more importantly, it featured an intro sequence with Peter Murphy singing “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” and a whole other layer was added to my musical obsessions. My main fascination with metal and most of the hardcore punk bands that I enjoyed was the “darkness” element. Sabbath and Slayer incorporated overtly Satanic themes into their music which I later discovered were more theatrics than actual believe, but at the time it seemed real and a little frightening to me; it added a feeling that you were discovering something forbidden.
As a child raised in a “Christian” home, I was told every Sunday in church that the way to ensure eternal life was to believe in the Bible and Jesus. If I didn’t believe in these things, I was going to end up in Hell, a horrible place full of horrible people being tortured for eternity. I was free to choose to believe or not to believe, but if I made the wrong choice I was fucked. Forever. This idea never sat well with me, especially when I realized that other cultures had different ideas about what makes punishable behaviour. Chinese Buddhist Hell is a place that makes way more sense than Christian Hell. In fact, it makes Christian Hell seem like a scam to make more money for the Church. Rather than punishing people for not believing in a weird sexist storybook, in Chinese Buddhist Hell you are punished for doing really shitty things during your life, repeatedly, to the point that your soul becomes so weighted down with bad karma that you sink into one of 18 levels where you are punished until your karma is served off. A kind of rehabilitation scheme for your soul. So if you’re a pedo, you’re going to be boiled alive in a cauldron of oil, a thought that I find quite enjoyable. If you talk a bunch of shit, you’re going to have your tongue ripped out by demons. If you pretend to be someone you’re not, you’ll be steamed like so many little buns. If you are a powerful oppressor, you’ll be ground in a mill into powder, over and over again, until you’ve paid off your billions in thievery. All in all, I like the sound of this place, especially since I always thought that being as nice a person as you can was the best way to avoid Hell – I mean, who wants to believe that all those child molesting priests are going to be enjoying some fucking paradise after they finally die? I would much prefer them to be burned and bubbled in a rolling vat of oil. After the jump, check out the Eighteen Levels of Hell, complete with ancient depictions of each level of torture…
“The Atheist” by JR of Pig Destroyer
I don’t know what you hate, I suppose it could be anything, but just for a moment imagine that you hate Baseball. As soon as you see it pop up on the television you change the channel in disgust. All of the catching and throwing and running around just seems silly and pointless to you. The crack of the ball against the bat reflexively sends the contents of your stomach surging upwards into the back of your throat. Now imagine that not only are the vast majority of people in the world baseball fans, but that in their fanaticism they have decided; without consulting you; that not only does everyone have to love baseball, but you have to pick a favorite team.
This is my relationship to religion. I was indoctrinated when I was a child, and I wrestled with it through most of my adolescence. My fear of Hell made me fear my own thoughts, my own sexuality. I was taught that man was once perfect, but had since fallen into decadence and degradation. Sometimes they made it seem like almost everything a person could think or do was a sin. Where some saw peace and understanding, I could only see ignorance and xenophobia.
Other people around me would react differently. They were filled with great happiness and fulfillment. They would throw their hands into the air at service, seemingly drunk on God’s love and security. Why couldn’t I feel these things? Was I incomplete? Was I possessed by the Devil? Why did my mind constantly hunger for knowledge and understanding? Perhaps it was like a taste in food or music, maybe one man’s worship is just another man’s boot licking. I guess if you’re going to ask questions like that you have to be prepared to never find the answers.
I was told that humans could not understand the mind of God, any more than a serf might understand the whims of his king. My questions seemed reasonable enough to me. Why would a being who is supposed to be perfectly good exhibit so much jealousy and sadism? How could an all powerful being have an adversary? What about all the people who died before the birth of Jesus? Were they condemned to Hell simply for being born too early to be saved? Why would the creator bestow upon me the faculties of logic and reason if their only use was to send me spiraling to a fiery doom? When I would ask the pastor these questions he would just laugh heartily and pat me on the shoulder. Surely I was too young and naïve to understand the intricacies of scripture. And the more I studied it, the more lazy and made up that it all seemed. I still had to pray for a few more years before I finally realized I was talking to myself.
At some point in my early twenties I decided that I didn’t really care about what happened to me when I died. God or no God, I was going to live my mortal life as a free man. Free to decide for myself what I think is right or wrong. And if this freedom carried with it some eternal punishment then bring it on. I will laugh all the way down to Hell.
Robert Whitaker: Yes, there was a particular story; but it was sort of a backdoor entry, actually. In 1998, I started writing about the problems in psychiatric drug trials. At that point, I decided to do a series for the Boston Globe on problems in psychiatric research. While I was doing that series, I kept coming upon outcome studies that I found mind-boggling.
One was the World Health Organization studies which showed that outcomes for people with mental health problems were much, much better in the poor countries of the world. By the way, the results of their first report was so startling, they repeated the study, and they came up with the same results. When I asked people why that was, no one could give me a good answer. They would just say, “Oh, well, families are nicer over there,” or “societies are nicer.” It didn’t really ring true.
Spirit: In the developed countries, supposedly we have more advanced therapies and drugs; and yet the outcomes are worse here, with far more people locked into lifelong, chronic mental illness?
Whitaker: Exactly. So that really opened an interesting question that no one was answering. One other thing caught my attention as I started looking at those World Health Organization studies. What no one, and I mean no one, mentioned was that the use of antipsychotic drugs was much less in those poor countries where people were infrequently kept on the drugs.
So here you had this disparity. You have our medical paradigm here in this country, which says continual drug treatment for those diagnosed with schizophrenia is absolutely essential. And yet outcomes and recovery rates were much, much higher in poor countries where they didn’t follow that paradigm. That obviously raises the question: Is there something wrong with our paradigm?
The other study that dovetails with this is by the Harvard Medical School researchers who, in 1994, had looked at outcomes over the centuries for schizophrenia patients, and concluded that outcomes hadn’t really improved since 1900, when the therapies of the day were water therapies. Again, that was contrary to the story we tell ourselves. The story we tell ourselves is that we’re getting ever better drugs and we’re getting ever better at understanding the “biology” of the disease of schizophrenia.
I have no problem pissing off racists, because I think they are bottomfeeders and the scum of the earth. This is why CVLT Nation’s sickest tumblr this moment is FUCK YEAH ANARCHO PUNK – it’s full of left wing art, articles, video and much more. I could lose myself in this page for hours. FUCK YEAH ANARCHO PUNK also has a sense of humor I can relate to. With all of the fucked up shit that is going on around the world, it’s cool to see that some people have the right state of mind and don’t feel that it’s necessary to fall in line with the fascists. So after the jump, see how FUCK YEAH ANARCHO PUNK slaps the taste out of the mouths of all nazis and fascist corporate bastards!
Property has played a huge role in US history. From property ownership being the requirement for participation in the governmental system, to modern-day billionaires taking out 1% interest rate mortgages, those making and lobbying the law have made sure that property stays mostly in the hands of their cohorts. There are so many people in this country, and especially in our generations, who can’t and may not ever afford to buy a home. Increasing numbers of Americans are finding themselves homeless, kicked out of properties that sit vacant for years after. Activist and author Hannah Dobbz released her book Nine Tenths of the Law on November 1st, 2012, in an effort to help people understand the history of property laws and the people’s struggles to find shelter in the land of the “free.” Driving through LA and seeing foreclosed home after foreclosed home, I can’t help but think that there has never been a more important time to teach people about the importance of finding a way out of the current system, one that has no problem evicting a family at their time of need, while the very banks evicting them accept government subsidy. Dobbz is currently on tour for her book, doing talks at book shops and cafes for its launch, so make sure to check those dates after the jump, as well as an in-depth description of Nine Tenths of the Law. You can pick up the book directly from Dobbz on her tour, or you can get it at your local independent book store or from the publisher, AK Press, HERE.
Drug War Capitalism
by Dawn Paley
IN BOTH THE United States and Canada there have been sustained grassroots efforts to spotlight the unjust mass incarceration and criminalization of poor people, and especially poor people of color, for drug-related arrests. But there has been too little analysis about the reasons behind and mechanisms of this war, and its economic impact on Mexico and beyond.
Even before a withdrawal from Iraq or Afghanistan has been achieved, the United States has become involved in a series of intensifying conflicts taking place from Mexico’s north border through Peru. Governments and mainstream media label it a “war on drugs.” It is important to examine how the expanding “war on drugs” connects to the expansion of transnational corporate control over markets, labor and natural resources.
In Honduras, four Indigenous people were shot and killed in May, when Honduran forces opened fire from a U.S. State Department helicopter, all under the supervision of uniformed U.S. agents. In Mexico — under the guidance of the United States, Canada, Israel and Colombia — the police and army are being transformed.
Story Source Village Voice By Brad Cohan
Joe Carducci not only played a monumental role in helping run and co-own SST Records in its glorious 1980′s heyday when Black Flag, Minutemen, Hüsker Dü and Meat Puppets were the reigning kings of the Amerindie underground, but he also famously penned the lyrics for the Minutemen’s Double Nickels on the Dime classic “Jesus and Tequila,” and later on, wrote tunes for Mike Watt.
But above his legendary SST Records pedigree is Carducci, music scribe figurehead and film and political pundit. He penned the definitive manifesto sprawl of the history of rock music called Rock and the Pop Narcotic (originally released by Henry Rollins’ 2.13.61 imprint in 1991) and recently authored Enter Naomi: SST, L.A. and All That, an inspirational yet gut wrenching account of his SST friend and punk rock photographer Naomi Petersen, who tragically passed away from liver failure in obscurity in the mid-90′s.
Since 1995, Carducci has lived in Wyoming, banging out screenplays, short stories, keeping an extensive blog that hardcore godhead Keith Morris love and running Redoubt Press, his own DIY-operated publishing company. He just self-released Life Against Dementia: Essays, Reviews, Interviews 1975-2011, the comprehensive Carducci collection righteously on par with that of Richard Meltzer’s A Whore Just Like the Rest and Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung by Lester Bangs.
Sound of the City sat down with Carducci to talk about his new book, the SST days and the false reportage that he was averse to signing Sonic Youth to SST. He reads tonight from his latest book Life Against Dementia: Essays, Reviews, Interviews 1975-2011 (Redoubt Press) at BookThugNation at 7:30pm in Williamsburg (100 N. 3rd Street; between Berry St. and Wythe Ave.)
Did keeping your blog The New Vulgate serve as the inspiration to compile the content for your new book, Life Against Dementia?
I was thinking about the collection before we started the blog. But the Vulgate made me get productive and wound up providing about half of Life Against Dementia. It also allowed me to chop down the interview sections to just a short piece of the older interviews that haven’t been posted online.
I find so much light in the darkness that at times it does not even feel like darkness anymore, just an ocean of positivity. One source of inspiration is all of the interesting beings that make up this world that CVLT Nation exists within. One label that we have mountains of respect for is The AJNA Offensive, because of the depth he goes to to put out things that make a difference. Honestly, this label is bigger than just records – The AJNA Offensive also co-publishes books with Feral House, such as Propaganda and Holy Writ of “The Process Church of the Final Judgement,” Blutleuchte or Infernal Proteus, which are all printed on the finest quality paper. You can tell by the way The AJNA Offensive pays attention to detail that this is a true labor of love and he has huge respect for the knowledge he is dealing in. Then there is the music that his label puts out that crosses over different genres to only release records that mean something to him and to his customers. In The AJNA Offensive webstore, you will find the latest titles from Sabbath Assembly (review HERE),Teitanblood (review HERE), Necros Christos and many more. Plus there is a distro for you to wander around that carries even more labels and killer records! After the jump, take a closer look at The AJNA Offensive books plus read detailed descriptions and some more surprises!
Text and Photos by Holy Mountain
Matt Kerley is tattoo / fine artist hailing from Greenville, North Carolina. He is most well known for his tattoos, a craft he has been honing for the last 7 years, however the release of his first book “Cone, Sphere, Cube” should broaden the scope of what people expect from him. Clocking in at 100 pages, Matt channels his own blend of traditional tattoo style and illustration by way of Raymond Pettibon and Robert Williams creating strange and thoroughly interesting characters and illustrations. The pages contain notes, song lyrics and anecdotes giving a glimpse into Matt’s mindset while working on each piece. What originally started as a daily sketchbook of brush, pen and ink drawings has been transformed into a beautiful, professionally bound book collecting a daring new chapter in Matt’s life as an artist. Highly recommended!