Reasons to Live Are Good

I rarely get music news from Japan. I love a few bands, but for some reason they don’t cross my mind every day, I can lose track. But I found out several years ago Kaori from Yellow Machinegun started another band called Suzisuzi, which means “vein” in Japanese. They are old school thrash punks, not young people, but exactly what you would hope to see in rock stalwarts. They crush it. And added bonus, one of these tracks is a retail worker anthem:


Watch Your Heart – Islamophobia and Antisemitism

I don’t have anything definitive to say on the issue of Israel and Palestine for a good reason: It’s a complicated situation and I haven’t done the homework. Even saying that, someone will come in the comments and try to tell me it’s really totally simple. Yes, aspects of it are simple. Massacres and apartheid and terrorism are bad, specific incidents and blatantly evil systems and institutions can be unequivocally condemned.

But taking a side in this conflict can lure you into affirming and amplifying your prejudices. Right now, creepy officials in the US are trying to force people to pledge loyalty oaths to Israel. That’s bad for us, bad for peace. France’s Emmanuel Macron has sad that rejecting Israel’s political will is inherently antisemitic. Again, compelling people to mindlessly support a state’s right to oppress an ethnic group. That’s bad stuff.

But all you have to do is raise the issue to see the antisemites and islamophobes crawl out of the woodwork – and to see people you’re normally inclined to like and respect start showing shades of those character flaws. Look at the phrasing of the comments on the Pharyngula post about this. Sometimes it’s subtle, but it’s telling.

The antisemitically inclined will list bad adjectives, then the word “jewish” among them. Maybe they aren’t antisemitic, but the way they phrased their comment unintentionally equates being jewish with being a fascist. Or maybe the outsized influence of the Israel lobby in the US provokes latent antisemitic feelings in them, about how jews secretly control the world.

The islamophobically inclined will say their feeling is that Israel will be more peacefully inclined and trustworthy than Palestine. They’ll remember the many instances of antisemitic rhetoric and actions being taken by Palestinians or people using them as a political cause, but forget all the islamophobic stew we’ve been swimming in since the damn 1960s.

If you are going to comment on the conflict in that region, do your homework first. That’s the reason I don’t comment on it – because I don’t have the time to take that step properly. And more than that, watch your heart. I’m inclined to trust the politically lefty to have the well-being of all people in their heart as they approach a situation, BUT I know damn well we are culturally cultivated to be antisemitic and many of us are just thoughtless enough to let that get out of control, get away from us.

All I want is for you to think before you speak, to search your feelings for prejudice. It may seem hypocritical of the guy with whose average post is tweet length, but bear with me. And good luck.


Open for Commissions Again

I’ve started paying back a new debt and it’s wiping me out beginning of every month. Once again, I’m putting out the sandwich boards. Will work for food. And money for xmas presents ;_; Anyhow, hit me up if you got some money and I can do something for you.


Inktober 2018, the Rest of ‘Em

Content Warnings for Images: Blood, Gore, Artistic Nudity, Sexual Creeping

Here’s the rest of the month, 12 days late. I’m not going to put a proper visual caption on these. They’re OK for a bit of visual distraction if you can see, but they just aren’t worth the effort to describe. It’s so much digital ephemera. For this (my first) Inktober, I combined the Monsters & Mythology prompts plus the Official Prompts.

Going with the spirit of Inktober I didn’t allow myself much digital work. For example, I allowed myself no additional strokes or distortion / warping – though I broke the distortion rule for the image of the “Zmey.” I don’t have every color in the universe, pen-wise, so I did allow myself subtle use of adjusting contrast, hue, saturation, brightness. I felt some drawings looked too spare without a base color, so I added a fill or gradients to those.

You can still tell I did the under-drawing for all of these with a yellow sharpie, so I couldn’t erase it. I think that kinda stuff looks fun in a drawing but I know some people hate it, so sorry about that. In this batch, I put more effort into disguising that somewhat with color replacement on a number of the pictures.

As I got through the last half of the prompts, my content got a little more creepy. Let me know if anything was too much. Proceeding thus,
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Open for Commissions

I need money really badly at the moment. No emergency, but some urgency. My household is experiencing that “food insecurity” that gets mentioned on the news. I need money for groceries for a few weeks.

Here are some samples of my art, from my Inktober posts. Also, you can check out my portfolio at http://www.christophocles.com/ Hit me up in the comments below or to great.american.satan@gmail.com …


Inktober Drop Two

With the soul-numbing horror in Brasil, it’s hard to give a shit about anything except The Resistance right now. Nonetheless…

Another 6 days. I’m not going to put a proper visual caption on these. They’re OK for a bit of visual distraction if you can see, but they just aren’t worth the effort to describe. It’s so much digital ephemera. For this (my first) Inktober, I’m combining the Monsters & Mythology prompts plus the Official Prompts.

Going with the spirit of Inktober I didn’t allow myself much digital work. For example, I allowed myself no additional strokes or distortion / warping. I don’t have every color in the universe, pen-wise, so I did allow myself subtle use of adjusting contrast, hue, saturation, brightness.

You can still tell I did the under-drawing for all of these with a yellow sharpie, so I couldn’t erase it. I think that kinda stuff looks fun in a drawing but I know some people hate it, so sorry about that. In some instances I color-replaced it. Proceeding thus,
[Read more…]

Perspective and Nazis

Content Warnings: Anti-semitism, Mass murder, Racist terrorism.

A creepy antisemite killed some people the other day, in the usual way. It was at a synagogue during a religious occasion. According to tumblr user prismatic-bell:

“You know, the news is really sheltering gentiles from the full horror of what happened this morning when they keep using the phrase “Brit Milah.” Yes, that’s what was happening in the synagogue this morning, but do you know what it is?

It’s a baby naming.

Every bit as important as a christening or first birthday.

That is what this shooter opened fire on. A baby naming with people praying for that baby’s health and happiness and future.”


And what did Robert Bowers, the mass murderer have to say about the baby-blessing business?

“HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people.

I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered.

Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

There’s a little bit of unexplained lingo in the terrorist’s tweet (or was it a “gab”?HIAS is an organization that helps immigrants, originally dedicated to helping jewish people escape pogroms and the like, now helping refugees more broadly. Nazi conspiracies have it that all those immigrants from south of the border are hot to kill the white man and take his women.

To the terrorist, those baby blessers were inhuman wizards, summoning an army of orcs to take out the magical people of light. Where is the evidence that refugees kill people? Recently Faux News helped Cheeto Hitler through a rough week by hyping a story about a young lady murdered by a shitty boyfriend who happened to be an immigrant.

No haps from them that week about how often white men – especially veterans god bless the troops – murder the ladies in their lives.  It paints a picture for people like our nazi terrorist du jour, this lopsided reportage, in combination with less accountable news sources on facebook publishing flat-out lies.

Anti-semitism is baked into Western civilization, like, oh, say, blood in a loaf of bread. As something of a cultural outsider – a neglected destitute child of two mentally ill black sheep – I missed the memo that I’m supposed to hate jewish people. But because of these centuries of persecution, wild folklore, pogroms, general shittiness in christendom, it’s really easy for many culturally christian people to buy these murderous lies about jewish ethnic groups.

I suspect the people in our fuhrer’s clique that are capable of being semi-thoughtful would really rather not have anti-semites be their main supporters. To them, it’s about oppressing negroes, which is much more politically safe in the United Snakes.  But they can’t hit one target without causing splash damage to jewish people. They try to stoke anti-latin prejudice and nazis figure out a way to blame it on “The Jews.”

But leaving aside the reason he believed jewish people were murdering whitey, he seemed quite convinced of it.  And if you care about a group of people who are being murdered, wouldn’t you want to go to bat for them?  I see jewish people actually being murdered, and could come back with a very similar train of thought to this creep:

“Nazis like to kill innocent people.  I can’t sit by and watch my fellow humans being slaughtered.  Fuck trying to look socially acceptable, fuck my personal safety, I’m gonna whack those fools.”

That makes perspective the main difference between this terrorist and me at my worst.  I don’t like that.  And that perspective makes me think maybe I should try to be more peaceful in life, in the struggle, despite the violent oppression of our times.  I don’t like that either.

Thinking about the Cyberpunk Apocalypse

CW: another grim /apocalyptic one, avoid as required

We’re clearly living in a cyberpunk era. Enough could be said on that to fill a book, but I’m more likely to turn it into a blog post, if anything. Marx and many others had ideas about the stages of history, the progress of civilization. I don’t know how well any of those hypotheses have played out, but from our vantage point now, the current and next stages of civilization are easy to see: Cyberpunk Dystopia, and collapse into Post Apocalypse. I just want to jot down this thought before I forget it, for future reference. One recurring theme of cyberpunk fiction was an inversion of what we’re going to see.

To thinkers back then, cyberspace was a sad fake realm of delusions that ultimately perpetuated human woe. While the internet has helped promote hate crimes and establish fascism in our time, that’s a case of a good thing being manipulated to evil ends. Much like how con artists exploit positive social instincts of trust and enthusiasm to rob people, I don’t think that reflects negatively on thing that was exploited.

Cyberspace is a good thing. We’re able to come together and make good things happen like never before, enrich each other’s lives, pool human knowledge and creativity and compassion. Selling out net neutrality, allowing monopolies for the mega-rich, these are killing the experience by tiny cuts.

And ultimately, it’s all going away. The infrastructure will collapse and we’ll lose this. For some people, that’s already the case. Rural areas in the USA already have garbage for service. Morpheus’s ideal – everyone walking away from the illusion to embrace the desert of the real? It’s not going to edify or elevate us in any way, but we’ll still have to experience it.

The collapse of the internet will be a good defining bound between the Cyberpunk and Post Apocalypse eras. And it’ll just be another signpost on the slide into extinction.

Inktober 2018 Drop

I’ve just got the first 8 days. I’m not going to put a proper visual caption on these. They’re OK for a bit of visual distraction if you can see, but they just aren’t worth the effort to describe. It’s so much digital ephemera. For this (my first) Inktober, I’m combining the Monsters & Mythology prompts plus the Official Prompts.

Going with the spirit of Inktober I didn’t allow myself much digital work. For example, I allowed myself no additional strokes or distortion / warping. I don’t have every color in the universe, pen-wise, so I did allow myself subtle use of adjusting contrast, hue, saturation, brightness.

You can still tell I did the under-drawing for all of these with a yellow sharpie, so I couldn’t erase it. I think that kinda stuff looks fun in a drawing but I know some people hate it, so sorry about that.

Allow me to use this opportunity to call out the official Inktober writers for being cheesy bastids, turning the phrase “roasted chicken“ into two separate prompts and using another to complain this job makes them “exhausted.” Proceeding thus,
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