Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tea Party Patriots, Glenn Beck, and Sarah Palin Explained

Chapter 1: Rock and Roll Music Culture

There is an era we can call rock 'n roll, countercultural, hippy, or even liberal. It spanned from the middle-late 1950's to the middle-late 1990's. It had a form and function that integrated American black music (all of the subgroups: gospel, blues, and jazz) into a world music, illicit drug use, sexual relations beyond one partner, and a reverence for anything simultaneously visceral and non-violent ( e.g. sex, danceable music).

The main conduit/media for this era was music. For sure there was literature and academics, qualitatively equal to the giants of any other era, but music types and personalities were the means of spreading all other memes in the era. If an academic had a radical, countercultural thesis, there had better be at least one song that resonated with the academic's message. If no one in the rock/punk/alternative echoed the thesis, then the thesis wasn't even remotely relevant.

Then something happened in the mid 1990's. Disney Corporation started training up and churning out talent (e.g. Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake) and the popular music press didn't make a fuss over the distinction between this as opposed to the previous 40 year history of self-taught, populist route to music stardom (e.g. Elvis, James Brown, John Lennon, George Clinton, Sting, U2, Kurt Cobain).

The delivery system for the countercultural system of ideas -music; up and died. Or at least shapeshifted silently from its essential self to an antithetical self, rendering it a killer of memes it once was the nurturer of.

Chapter 2: Internet Culture(s)

In the mid 1990's the Internet sprang into popular culture. At first it was college students, government employees, and early adopter tech hipsters on the bandwagon. By the year 2000 grandma was on it, and later with blogspot and Facebook she had her own content on the web also.

With easy self-publishing of Web 2.0 a wall of water rushed over the Earth -a torrent of micro-universes within which held endless threads of dialogue. To say there were mutations of classical ideologies, and they flourished and thrived, is an understatement. The aggregate size of these mutations quickly eclipsed the size of our own Sun.

Chapter 3: The Rise of a Counterculture, via Internet

While the Rock and Roll Music Counterculture died years ago, a new counterculture has emerged, sent to kill it. This new counterculture rallies around Guns, God, and Hating Gays. They are better at serving the violent edicts of the Old Testament rather than living like the non-violent Jesus of the New Testament. The gun toting bandit life of pre-1880's rural America, Bible in one hand, gun or whiskey in the other; that is the capstone of American greatness. A white man, drunk on whiskey, having referenced the Bible earlier in the day, shoots someone else, preferably an American Indian or black. And, basically, this new counterculture is saying that white man is a heroic icon, they want to or will do that lifestyle again.

But what are they really after? Well, its not actually running the country, they lack the attention to unemotional detail to attain or hold onto that. They want to gun down something. Ask them who they'd like to shoot/lynch, and I bet you get hundreds of answers. But the answers will all add up to one mythic entity: The Rock and Roll Music Culture circa 1955-1995.

The dead Bandits of the rural Wild West want to kill the dead Rock Stars of London, NYC, and LA .

Where did I develop a sense of this new counterculture? By happening upon it, appropriately, on the internet. Reading textual content, and then finding these photos. The craziness of the costumes indicates departure from our mainstream business or academic world. It is the new counterculture. I will cease with my wordy description and invite the reader to the photos on these sites.

1 comment:

The Serpent Lord said...

pure genius.

The Disney takeover of the old counterculture coincides with an anti-Disney sentiment among the first sprouts of the new counterculture: 90's Southern Baptist boycotts of Disney, allegations of phallic and occult symbols in Disney art (fairy tales, duh!) and so forth.

The wild-west connotations are interesting too. The religious movements that want creationism, ID or "controversy" taught in science classes all have their origins in the 19th century. (The catholics and protestants had already decided to respect the autonomy of science before these new sects even existed.)

Only in the lawless frontier (real or virtual) does the confluence of sensual depravity (titties and beer!) and religious bigotry (thank God I ain't queer!) make a twisted kind of sense.