Kickstart… the National Debt!

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Holy shit, Coilhaüsers. In under 24 hours, The Doom that Came to Atlantic City Kickstarter campaign featured yesterday on Coilhouse has exceeded its goal. Huge thanks to Cyriaque Lamar of IO9 for the signal boost that pushed the campaign over the edge. Together, we did it! (Frothing cultists, keep an eye out for announcements of stretch goals).

Looking for a bigger challenge? Megan Aram has been working with the Federal Government to come up with to Kickstarter our National Debt:

ABOUT THIS PROJECT

Hi you guys! Joe Biden and the rest of the gang here! :) We’re looking for some awesome people to help us Kickstart our dream project of having a functioning federal government! That’s where you come in: all we’re asking for is a little help. And twenty trillion dollars.

You can read more about the project here. Some sample prizes:

PLEDGE $10 OR MORE

For your fairly useless donation to help the United States of America not founder under the multi-trillion dollar debt that we have amassed over decades of misspending and unnecessary wars that some may argue constitute war crimes, you get a tote.

PLEDGE $20 OR MORE

If you donate $20, we will list you as an associate producer of the Government by carving your name into the Vietnam War Memorial. You can tell all your friends you’re a ghost because you died in the Vietnam War! You know – the righteous one!

Other prizes include a redesign of the American flag (“we will replace each star with your face. Unless you’re black, since the stars are white and it really makes sense for them to be as close to white as possible”), the state of Louisiana, or, for the highest tier, the ability to start any war you want!

Read more at Kickstarter: National Debt. ‘Murica, fuck yeah!

[via Tavi Gevinson]

“Knocked The Bottom Out of Me”? Knock it off, PETA.

Oh, PETA…


(via SigKate)

Can’t you folks create any campaigns that don’t hinge on some form of insipid, othering, sexist objectification? It shouldn’t be that difficult, considering your stated aims. Here’s an idea: rather than euthanizing a vast majority of your rescues, how about hiring ‘em to come up with some new marketing and promotional material for ya? Argh… I’m halfway serious. It’s entirely possible that a golden retriever could provide something more palatable than the dehumanizing dreck you keep churning out like, well, sausage.

Seattle Stranger commenter CrankyBacon puts it well: “This isn’t a sex-positive vs. prude situation. Women can be engaged in policy issues, make coherent arguments, be persuasive, protest, etc. They have more to offer than standing naked outside a butcher shop, or pretending to give a blow job to a cucumber and titty fuck a carrot.” Female activists have more to offer than going nude to titillate for the cause. Women can aid your agenda in ways that don’t require them to be depicted as battered, pantsless-in-public, grocery-buying/fanny-flaunting fuckholes for ubersexed males. (Sure, naked men sometimes feature in your campaigns, but not nearly as often, and never presented in a remotely similar context.)

“Chicks Agree”? No, actually. Not this “chick”. Not with the persistent, lazy, women-as-meat misogyny, anyway. C’mon, PETA, don’t you owe it to human beings and animals alike to try to encourage more responsible and respectful discourse?

Coilhouse Presents: Matthew Borgatti’s OWS Bandanna Remix Pack!


Photo, model and wardrobe styling: Numidas Prasarn.

Last fall, artist and maker Matthew Borgatti (previously on Coilhouse) released a snappy Guy Fawkes bandanna in solidarity with OWS in his Etsy Store. “This is the hanky code for revolution,” wrote Matthew. Perfect for protecting oneself from “sudden dust storms and outbreaks of authoritarianism,” the bandanna’s design includes tips for peaceful protesting, advice for dealing with pepper spray, phone numbers to call in case of arrest, and the words “Never Forget / Never Forgive / Expect Us” emblazoned on the corners. (The disclaimer reads, “all advice offered on this bandana should not be construed as legal council. Consult a lawyer in the event of any involvement with the law. If you cite a bandana as your legal council in court you will be laughed at by a man in a wig.”)

The bandanna quickly went viral thanks to BoingBoing, Reddit (featuring the best comment thread ever) and Laughing Squid. The mask was soon adopted by artists involved in the Occupy Movement, including Neil Gaiman and Molly Crabapple, as well as protesters nationwide.

Debuting here on Coilhouse under the Share-Alike Attribution Non-Commercial license, we proudly present the OWS Bandana Remix Pack! The zip file (1.7 MB) contains elements to remix as masks, prints, bandanas, and posters. Included are vector files with elements, stencils, and a copy of the full text on the bandana. “If you’d like to create your own Fawkes bandana,” writes Matthew, “I’d suggest cutting out a stencil on acetate and bleach printing.” Add your own layers, create new patterns and print as many as you want.

Click here to download the OWS Bandana Remix Pack! And do send us or Matthew the artwork, posters or fashion that results. We’d love to see what you come up with. After the cut, a brief interview with the maker.

Are you at all worried about the film studio suing you?
I am, a little, as I think I’ve got a solid case for the independence of this art from the works that it references, but can easily be shut down by the studio on a whim. I don’t have the financial weight to do anything but to submit to an injunction or C&D, as I can’t afford the kind of legal representation it takes to swat off Time Warner. Guy Fawkes has gone from a person, to a caricature represented in mask and effigy, to a comic book character, to a film character, to an iconic mask, to the face of an ambiguous entity, to a symbol for revolution and direct action for social change. How a single company could own all that baffles me.

The Battleship Potemkin

One of the most acclaimed films of all time, and certainly one of the artfully made/broadly influential propaganda pieces created to this day, Sergei Eisentstein‘s 1926 feature film The Battleship Potemkin presents an exhilarating (not to mention highly dramatized, sometimes outright fictionalized) depiction of the 1905 mutiny of a Russian battleship’s crew agains their Tsarist commanding officers. Eisenstein made cinematic history with his development of the montage concept, and his unflinching use of realistic violence.

Via Jess Nevins comes word that we can watch the entire thing, uninterrupted, on teh YooToobz. It’s the version with the Shostakovich score, too. Pretty awesome (in the traditional sense of the word, even)!

“Fotoshop” by “Adobé”

A deftly crafted satirical fauxmercial by Jesse Rosten sings the praises of an beauty industry secret known as “Fotoshop”:

“You don’t have to rely on a healthy body image or self respect anymore. [...] There’s only one way to look like a REAL cover girl: Fotoshop by Adobé.” OH SNAP.

Rosten’s piss-take nails the spooky Stepfordian tone and presentation of the average beauty commercial. He’s so crafty, in fact, it takes a few seconds for the “I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE” to kick in. Just in case anyone’s confused, a statement beneath the Vimeo embed reads: “This commercial isn’t real, neither are society’s standards of beauty.”

Invasive, absurd digital manipulation’s not going anywhere. Still, it’s nice to know we’re at the point of not just openly discussing its ubiquity, but mocking it mercilessly!

Previously on Coilhouse:

“Rick Perry is an Ass”

Today, many of us were appalled and saddened (though not terribly shocked) by the tone and content of (former Texas Governor, presidential hopeful, LGBTQ-damnator, and corndog-gnawer) Rick Perry’s most recent campaign video.

Let us strive to find the strength, through humor, to turn the other cheek:


Bless you, Peter Coffin. (Via E. Stephen.)

Spanksgiving Dankfulness

It’s Thanksgiving Day in the U.S. of A., and an ever-so-delightful Thursday evening (or Friday morning) everywhere else. What are you thankful for?

Coilhouse is thankful for Boing Boing’s traditional airing of Burroughs’ Thanksgiving Prayer, for arguing on the internet about Riceian vampire permaboners, and for Darla Teagarden, who just linked to this insanity:

Click it. You know you want to. Especially if you just ate a big ol’ pile of brined and stuffed turkey. MMM MMMMMM!

Yulia Tymoshenko Sentenced to 7 Years Behind Bars

NO!!!

After losing the presidential election last year, Ukranian prime Yulia Tymoshenko was ousted from the government when her long-time opponent Viktor Yanukovich came to power. Today, she was sentenced to seven years in prison over a gas deal that she signed with Russia in 2009. Tymoshenko is accused of abusing power while serving as prime minister by authorizing imports of Russian gas at elevated prices without government approval. The Guardian reports:

Ukraine shut the book on its flirtation with democracy and European integration on Tuesday when it sentenced former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko to seven years in prison in a trial widely seen as a political witch-hunt.

Yulia Tymoshenko is many things to many people. A brief rundown of Coilhouse’s Tymoshenko-stalking over the years:

  • Is Ukraine prime minister secretly a goth? (An exhaustive analysis of Tymoshenko’s dramatic, neo-Victorian sense of fashion)
  • Exquisite Tymoshenko Doll Helps Orphans (In which I beg the Coilhouse community to buy me a $53K Tymoshenko porcelain fashion doll and further dissect her penchant for black lace and leg-o-mutton sleeves)
  • Asgarda – The legend of a mountain-dwelling tribe of paramilitary Amazons who have built a up a cult around Yulia Tymoshenko

Tiger-owning, motorcycling-stradding Yulia Tymoshenko is also an anime and manga character in Japan, the subject of bizarre fan art and a beloved cosplay character. Her sentencing has been the subject of a topless protest by self-described “bitches of democracy” activist group FEMEN (in typical self-contradictory FEMEN fashion, Lady Yu was also the subject of a mocking striptease/protest some months before).

I don’t pretend to know enough about Ukraine’s politics to say whether she’s corrupt or not. If FEMEN is to be believed, the entire trial is “a squabble between two criminal gangs [being presented] as a battle between good and evil.” That’s usually the way these things go.

Even if that’s the truth, I don’t want Lady Yu to go to jail. I want her to continue being one of the most powerful and fabulous women in the world, to wear crinolines with jet-black diamonds and a matching lace-embroidered jet pack, for her to make Ukraine the first nation to colonize Mars, to deploy android copies of herself, and to conduct international diplomacy while riding a dinosaur. Because I believe in this:

FREE YULIA!

[via Daniel]

The Praise of Motherfuckers

Another thoughtful article by guest contributor Jeffrey Wengrofsky, “The Praise of Motherfuckers” looks at intergenerational warfare and the use of the word “motherfucker” in counterculture. NYC readers, take note: Jeff’s latest film (with the Syndicate of Human Image Traffickers), “The Party in Taylor Mead’s Kitchen,” is an Official Selection of DOC NYC 2011, the documentary film festival of the Independent Film Channel. It is scheduled to make its premiere on November 6 at New York University’s Kimmel Center at 7:30 and on November 7th at the Independent Film Center at 3:45. The film depicts the romantic beauty and squalid dereliction of the bohemian life as embodied by Beat poet and Warhol Superstar Taylor Mead. It’s being shown with “Girl with the Black Balloons.” Grab your tickets here. Congrats, Jeff! – Ed


“WALL ST. is WAR ST.” Photo by Larry Fink. More photos here.

There is a … sort of madness… which the furies bring from hell; those that are herewith possessed are hurried on to wars and contentions… inflamed to some infamous and unlawful lust, enraged to act the parricide, seduced to become guilty of incest, sacrilege, or some other of those crimson-dyed crimes…  ~  Erasmus

Not long ago I attended a lecture on youth rebellion in the 1960s.  The presenter noted with disdain that the word “motherfucker” was used by some of the speakers at the notorious demonstration against the 1968 Democratic National Convention.   Use of this term, so the argument went, was emblematic of a movement that was politically inept if not inherently self-destructive.  And the most immediate casualty of the unholy coupling of “mother” and “fucker,” it was alleged, was the candidacy of Hubert Humphrey, who lost to Richard Nixon.  For those outside the Convention, however, Humphrey’s nomination – pre-ordained by party insiders – offered a continuation of the Vietnam War and seemed to make a farce of our democracy.


The Motor City Five get it on (and duck stray bullets)

Well, it got me to thinking, and I soon made the personal discovery that Motherfuckery was all over America in the late 1960s and early 1970s.  No, not literally, of course.  The phrase was, however, in conspicuous currency among New Leftists in a way it had not been before or has been since.

On that fated afternoon in 1968, Rob Tyner of the MC5 had, indeed, shouted his shibboleth – “It’s time to kick out the jams, motherfuckers!” – to ignite his band’s performance, as he did for nearly every show.  After hours of peaceable, if raucous, assembly and rock’n’roll (the MC5 were the only band with the gumption to perform), Chicago mayor Richard Daley dispatched 23,000 police and National Guardsmen to beat and gas the protestors.  And when Connecticut Senator Abraham Ribicoff noted, on the floor of the Convention, that Daley was using “Gestapo tactics,” Daley himself fired the epithet of the era right back at the rostrum: “Fuck you, you Jew son of a bitch! You lousy motherfucker!”

Just a year earlier, Everett LeRoi Jones decorated a poem celebrating the race riots that would permanently cripple Newark: “All the stores will open if you say the magic words. The magic words are: Up against the wall mother fucker this is a stick up!” Magic words indeed, but the “joosh stores” did not “open,” they closed and remain shuttered to this day or marked only by empty spaces in their footprint.

The phrase “motherfucker” had already been in circulation in hip, African-American lingo long before Jones tapped it, referring to someone who may be evil, a passionate musician, or simply a force to be reckoned with.  It is important to note here that mainstream African-American society, ever-struggling for respect, was possibly even more hostile to the use of the term in polite company than America as a whole.

In New York City, Ben Morea, a ballsy street urchin whose totalizing, uncompromising politics was wedded to a phrase befitting his society of self-proclaimed “suicidal sidewalk psychopaths” known as “Up Against the Wall, Motherfucker,” “The Motherfuckers,” or, most simply, as UAW/MF – though they referred to themselves collectively as “The Family.”  Perhaps significantly, Morea “did not know his father [and] did not want to tell his mother he was a Motherfucker because he did not want to disappoint her.”  Osha Neumann, another Motherfucker, also had a twist in his family romance: his father’s best friend, a man who had lived in his house like an uncle (Herbert Marcuse), married his widowed mother.

The Motherfuckers declared war on “the totality of reality as shaped by” the financial, military, and cultural elites by disrupting the suburban commute at Grand Central Station and high mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  In the middle of the garbage strike of 1968, Motherfuckers dumped bags of rotting garbage from the scummy streets of the Lower East Side onto the pristine promenade of the newly-minted Lincoln Center.  They “ran free stores and crash pads…organized community feasts…[and] propagandized against the merchandizing of hip culture…” And, in the middle of the attempted “exorcism of the Pentagon,” only the Motherfuckers actually got inside the five-sided hole of power.   Puritanical Roundheads on the frontline of America’s “cultural revolution,” they fought the police and sometimes against other radicals, criticized both the war and the naive embrace of the Vietcong by the left, shot blanks at poet Kenneth Koch (who may have fainted or told them to “grow up”), printed and distributed fliers in solidarity with fellow traveler Valerie Solanas after she shot Andy Warhol, and forced Bill Graham into letting them use the Fillmore East for free once a week.

When Detroit’s MC5 came to play New York’s Fillmore on one such night, free tickets had not been distributed to the Motherfuckers and their ilk, unbeknownst to the band.  The sight of the MC5 pulling up in a limo provided by Electra Records the Motherfuckers then took to be a sign of bourgeois bedfellowship, so they trashed the Fillmore and sent that otherwise courageous band into rapid retreat under threat of grievous body harm.   The Motherfuckers were so feared that they once closed the mighty Museum of Modern Art by simply revealing their plans for it.  Their slogan was put to music by David Peel and Harold C. Black, lo-fi renegades calling themselves “The Lower East Side,” in a feisty ditty on an album whose cover demurred from disclosing the word “motherfucker” although it was otherwise brash enough to be titled Have a Marijuana. More than a regional phenomenon, the Motherfuckers were the only non-student branch of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), were admitted to and then purged from the largely French Situationist International, and had their slogans scooped up by San Francisco’s Jefferson Airplane for their song, “We Can be Together.” (Jefferson Airplane would actually voice a parricidal fantasy in a different song: “Hey Frederick.”)

Alex Jones And The Clockwork Elves

Every once in a while I like to check in on Alex Jones, just to see how he’s doing. The man lives in a very dangerous world, you understand. Far more dangerous than the sphere that you and I inhabit. Crazy shit goes down on a daily basis in Jones’s ‘hood, so I just stop by every now and then to make sure that his head hasn’t exploded or, at the very least, to witness his head exploding.

There could not have been a better time. Truly, this is some of the man’s finest work. It’s got everything a conspiracy could ask for: government cover-ups, drug use, Philip K. Dick and elves. It’s awe-inspiring stuff. The gist is that powerful old men, who may or may not be ruling the world, are jacked up on the powerful hallucinogen dimethyltryptamine (DMT). Under the effects of the drug, they have come into contact with beings Jones’s claims they refer to as “clockwork elves” who instructed them to enslave humanity and build the Large Hadron Collider.

Now, Jones insists that he does not believe this (probably…maybe) and that this is “pretty David Icke”. He wants you to know that he doesn’t talk about this stuff because it would blow your mind. But he also knows that you need to know these things. You need to be aware because, as mentioned, Alex Jones lives in a pretty dangerous world and, with his help, you can too.