alternative, independent, literature, politics, Uncategorized

DIY Propaganda

In the past if an individual wanted to issue propaganda the best they could usually do was a stack of mis-printed flyers that ended up in the mud or clogging up the storm drains.

Now with social media everyone has their own little propaganda platforms. We use them less and less for socializing and more for creating images. Unrealistic self-aggrandizing and censored propaganda. As a result there are two selves – the true self, and the projected self, or constructed self.

People like Goebbels, Stalin’s Pravda, Mussolini and Kim Il Sung were pioneers of the genre. Back then it required the resources of a nation state to be able to so carefully craft the image of the self that the true self desired. Stalin, for example, loved to doctor photos. He stood about 5′4 but Soviet propaganda photos depict him as much taller. Similarly photos were doctored to show him sitting next to Lenin and smiling when in fact there were many people sitting between them. Most famously was the complete removal of Nikolai Yezhov from all official photographs. Yezhov was the former head of NKVD and Stalin’s personal hatchet man until he fell out of favour with Stalin. Just like his successor and predecessor Yezhov was executed in the NKVD headquarters basement.

Essentially Stalin used doctoring of images, and the communist mouthpiece paper, the Pravda to make himself appear closer to Lenin, to erase any photos suggesting that Yezhov and Stalin had ever even met.

So what the hell does this have to do with social media in 2017? Now everyone has access to that technology and more control over their own image than Kim Jong Il (inventor of the hamburger and author of 5,000 books during college according to DPRK sources) could have dreamed. High school kids can doctor photos, blogs serve as personal Pravda’s, our own little propaganda papers. Even without realizing we use social media to present the image of our ideal selves, rather than our true selves. We can construct our own realities. Simply block viewpoints we don’t agree with. Delete embarrassing photos, take back statements and expressions than no longer align with your views with a couple of clicks. Leave no trace. Change your name, remake your body, tell everyone you’re on vacation in France. They’ll believe it, why wouldn’t they?

Technology is not inherently good or bad, if and how you make use of it is whats important. Are we becoming our own Stalin’s and Kim Il Sungs? How much of this is really us and how much of it is just how we want to appear to the outside world.

Jack Blare, April 12, 2017

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addiction, alternative, depression, independent, literature, politics, Uncategorized, writing

Why fix it if it works?

Every time I think I have finally found a decent balance of medication one of my doctors has to fuck it up. Now I get to choose whether to withdraw from klonopin, which I’ve been taking as a prescription for four years, stopping suboxone and going through an opioid withdrawal or go back to shooting coke, dilaudid and fentanyl.With my anxiety at a peak, this being the year my dad died, my genius doctor is taking me off the medication that stops me from obsessively slicing holes in my body during panic attacks. I guess i could go on enough methadone to be too out of it to feel anxious. Really not caring much. Every time I try to do things the “right” way it somehow gets fucked up. Now the cravings have returned and all I want is double shot of hydro right in my mainline. I don’t trust anyone at all. 240 pages into my novel and I just stopped caring. I’ll write more when I get some speed. I’m so irritated at this point I would do practically anything. The only thing stopping me from going back to my poly-substance trash can ways is that B. is visiting. She’s the only person who’s opinion actually matters to me. If things go well maybe it will break this fog of misery. If not I’ll go west. I have places to stay and enough connections not to have to worry about anxiety or withdrawal. What most non users don’t understand is that we know its fucking awful for us, we know that a bad shot can kill, we’ve had cotton fever and we don’t care. When you live that sort of lifestyle its not a matter of if you die, so much as how and when. Everyone accepts it except the ones so tweaked they think they’ll live forever. The truth is that by the time you’re sticking needles in your flesh looking for a working vein and spending all your cash on your habit you don’t give a shit if the next shot puts you down. There is only the present and the present is junk. Some, like me, get out before that last one but every day more people drop like flies and nobody really cares. Whats another dead junky to this world?

Jack Blare

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alternative, independent, literature, politics, Uncategorized, writing

Why Tumblr Politics Are So Ineffective At Changing People’s Views

Every day your scroll down your dash reading post after post about Donald Trump, all of them negative. If there is a dissenting viewpoint its usually squashed with outrage. All you have to do is read the suggestions at the top to see that Tumblr is a very left-leaning website. These are good values to hold in my opinion but this platform has become an echo-chamber of liberal ideas and propaganda, what I mean to say is that we’re preaching to the choir. Just as 4chan is an exclusively right wing website Tumblr has become exclusively left wing. The result is that we are talking to each other and reassuring one another with the same ideas but not enacting the change we want because political posts on Tumblr will only,or mainly, be read by people who more or less share the same viewpoints.

Its important to have political discourse but if you want to really change people’s minds you have to get your message across to the opposition and the apolitical. So while Tumblr is a great blogging site its not the best place to voice your political opinion if you’re on the left precisely because there are so few right wing people actually using Tumblr.

Jack Blare

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independent, literature, poetry, politics, Uncategorized

Western Civilization

An ordered decomposition,

Erosion by acculturated violence,

Tight-lipped teens crying 44 calibre tears

At the walls of their dearly purchased prisons.

 

The division of the invisible dollar

Sprouts little Stalins from the raw, cold earth,

Flecks of bloody mud in their moustaches,

Dead roots and dead ends tangled in their close-cropped hair.

 

Digital revolutionaries pace up & down

The hairy, distended guts of bedbound banks

Carrying limp signs & political party platforms

Condensed into dull 140 character slogans.

 

The simple has been simplified,

Chewed down & mashed up

For gnashing, sparkling fluoride teeth

Of the swollen Cyber Leviathan.

 

Cameras keep their black oil apertures

Trained unwaveringly on dying fires & past star deaths.

Smog rises in thick obsidian pillars

Choking the last few cancer-ridden voices of organic resistance.

 

Democratic ants armed with computers, smart phones & opinions

Fight skirmishes over tarnished scraps of idealist ideology,

As the invisible monster wraps its tentacles around the bare throats of the poor

& squeezes tighter, & tighter, until there’s nothing left but late apologies

& smoke occupied graveyards.

Jack Blare, People & Concrete (2015)

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