« Le droit de supprimer tous ceux qui nous agacent devrait figurer en première place dans la constitution de la Cité idéale. »
—Emil Cioran, De l'inconvénient d'être né, 1973.
(Swans - December 27, 2010) "The gloves are off" (or words to that effect), once quipped Donald Rumsfeld, the former secretary of defense under the Bush II administration. He was referring to Afghanistan and Iraq in the wake of 9/11. Well, the gloves are also off regarding the ruling class's decisive intent of waging a frontal attack on the well being of the masses. Whether in Sarkozystan and in Obamastan, or whatever "stans" you can think of, the goal of the leeches is to bleed hoi polloi dry by dismantling all social services that our forbearers fought and died for to provide the vast majority with a decent life and a gentle later years. What will happen to the leeches once no blood is left to suck from the suckers is a story that remains to be told. Perhaps they'll turn upon themselves in Madoff-like gore. Perhaps they'll dry up for lack of fuel and burst into flames. Osama bin Laden's dead body will be blamed for the happenstance and those who have survived the road kills will rejoice. Who knows? The future cannot be as clearly predicted as the past.
Still, one cannot look at the present -- that place located between yesterday and tomorrow -- without thinking of Alphonse Allais (1854-1905), the French writer and humorist who once wrote: Il faut prendre l'argent là où il se trouve, c'est-à-dire chez les pauvres. Bon d'accord, ils n'ont pas beaucoup d'argent, mais il y a beaucoup de pauvres. ("One must take the money where it is to be found; that is, from the poor. Well, okay, they don't have much money, but there are lots of them."). Plenty of blood to suck, indeed -- let's have it all, ALL.
Because, see, if you do not sport a Rolex around your wrist by age forty, have a swimming pool by age forty-one, a Patek Phillipe by age forty-two, a condo in the Bahamas or a house in the Azores by age forty-three, a Tiffany's diamond by age forty-four, a university building in your name by age forty-five, a non-profit foundation, also in your name, by age forty-six, etc., it can only mean that you are not worthy of appearing on Oprah Winfrey's best of the best TV show (sponsored by who else but you).
Oops, sorry, nowadays the entry age has become 20. Soon enough it will start in mummy's womb -- time's accelerating.
Jacqueline de Romilly, the immortal Hellenist who recently died at age 97, once mentioned two forms of government that are no longer included in our dictionaries: "Timocracy" and "theatrocracy," both concepts and words coined by Platon. The first one meant a regime lead by people whose only goals in life were privilege and admiration. The second is a regime in which everybody believes they are competent enough to lead even though they are utterly ignorant.
Madame de Romilly, an ardent advocate of the humanities, knew what she was talking about. To wit: From Sarkozystan to Obamastan nepotism and corruption reign -- not counting the gatekeepers (those pundits known as "journalists" in the corporate-controlled media), the bribes paid to the opinion-makers and the politicians, the intimidations thrown at dissenters, and violent political, legal, and commercial, attacks against les empêcheurs de tourner en rond, those who would not rest to divulge the hypocrisy of the ruling class (cf., WikiLeaks).
As the saying goes, take it or leave it.
WikiLeaks reveals a secret Vatican directive sent to all dioceses around the world and signed by the holy father: From now on all priests will have to use condoms when pedophiling. It will help 1) keep AIDS in check, 2) erase DNA evidence, and 3) save the Church.
The full implementation of Internet censorship in the U.S., on account of an Obama-declared "state of emergency," initiates a mass exodus of pedophiles back into the Roman Catholic priesthood.
Facebook makes it possible to have virtual sex on line, leading to a new global outbreak of AIDS.
An Interpol warrant is issued against Swans publisher for making love with his wife without a condom. He will be further charged for having digital sex with Mr. A. and Mr. W over the Internet, which, as everybody knows, is the main conduit to AIDS.
The top-down private structure of the Internet is finally and at long last overwhelmed by pure force of humorous Justin Bieber references. Net neutrality is declared officially dead.
Kindle, having lost millions in the open market, converts its entire stock into toilet paper.
Ariel Sharon comes back from his Néguev comatose death, shouting in Latin "I am the living Christ." Evangelical Christians hail the Lord. "Christ is back, Christ is back," they vuvusela. Jews convert en masse. Armageddon is supposed to be delayed by 1,000 years. 2012 is saved.
Popy Benedict, adamantly refusing to see the "self-confident and domineering" people [Ch. De Gaulle] disappear from the surface of the earth, converts to Judaism and moves to Israel with a suitcase filled with condoms. He becomes the last remaining jew in that "illegitimately-sired country" [F. Akomolafe]. Sadly, condoms preclude reproduction.
Dick Cheney falls into a coma in Wyoming, hoping to be the next Christ. Sarah Palin visits the lame body once a week as she liberally copulates with Liz. Evangelicals pray for the next coming. Armageddon is back in the news. Alleluia!
Nancy Pelosi comes out of the closet and confesses to being a lesbian with an undying crush on Sarah Palin.
Having discovered the homosexual connotation of "Tea Party," the new movement changes its name to the "Pee Party." Alternative slogans such as "Don't Pee on Me" or "To Pee or Not To Pee" are fiercely discouraged.
In the wake of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy repeal by the US government, Michelle Obama and Carla Bruni-Sarkozy are photographed by paparazzi making love in the Azores. Thanks to gawd's miracle, nine months later Carla gives birth to a Sarkozy mulatto and Michelle to an Obama albino.
Under the guidance of artist-manager Simon Fuller (of Spice Girls notoriety), Bill Gates, George Soros, and Warren Buffett form the first ever all-singing, all-dancing, and all-philanthropizing, billionaire man-band known as The Saviors. All proceeds from their hit will be donated to support beleaguered proponents of transnational capitalism.
In a counter-attack on the billionaires who pledged to donate at least half their fortunes to charity, opposing billionaires launch a propaganda campaign to ward off any criticism of wishing to hang on to their entire fortunes made at the expense of the now-impoverished. Their slogan, "Poor is the Nouveau Riche," dupes the underclass into believing they've finally achieved social status.
With the crash of home values, unemployment, the loss of pensions, dire prospects for Social Security, and the rising cost of health care, 80 becomes the new 65. Given that 80-year-olds are better educated than 20-year-olds, the competition for jobs makes 20 the new 90.
The George W. Bush Presidential Library is finally completed. It holds only one book, The Pet Goat, which is displayed upside down. A noted sculptor decorates the forecourt with a two-story-high water board.
The Airport Scanners Association decides to burnish its image. It inaugurates "The Mauled Award" for the best scanned male or female of the year. The statue, or Oscarette, is of a hermaphrodite in a posture of surrender.
The surviving victims of US torture squads form a choir. They are invited to the White House on the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks and agree to sing "God Bless America." Their band accompanies them on the xylophone and water board.
Swans Commentary receives a large, anonymous donation from Corleone in Sicily. The editors nobly refuse it until they are assured no strings are attached. "Natch," they are told, and decide to make use of the windfall. They inaugurate the SWANS' POOP AWARD FOR UNFULFILLED PROMISE. But chaos follows because there are too many candidates. After some controversy over a way of thinning them out, unanimity is finally reached. Only sitting presidents will be eligible.
In the spirit of New Year felicitations and things, Emperor Barack Obama, leader of the free world, declares that the Western nations shall, in the name of building a new egalitarian World Order, return back to the Global South all the monies that have been looted by the elite of the poor countries and lodged in Western banks. Emperor Obama vows that never again will the Global North be safe haven for corrupt officials from poor countries.
In order to avoid future attacks of racism, President Obama hires Michael Jackson's plastic surgeon to whiten his complexion.
To avoid putting his foot in his mouth, the Democratic Party subsidizes an operation to seal Joe Biden's lips once and for all. That done, Biden becomes a master of sign language and continues to exasperate his fellow Democrats.
Senator Bernard Sanders is offered and accepts Jimmy Stewart's role in a remake of Mister Smith Goes To Washington.
In one of the most sensational twists of the New Year, Glenn Beck marries Rush Limbaugh, triggering a failed suicide attempt by Bill O'Reilly.
Jewish gays get behind the new slogan: "Do Ask, But Don't Kvell!"
Italians come to understand the big mistakes they've made in the last twenty years in the political, economic, industrial, educational, and social fields. But they won't take steps to get out of their predicament, because they will not be able to find anyone to blame beside themselves. And Italians are never guilty of mistakes or anything else.
Hamid Karzai accepts an offer to become chairman of the board at defunct Lehman Brothers.
Afghanistan becomes the 51st state of the USA, and the Super Bowl will be played there every year from now on.
Shamed by recent disclosures that they have collared 25% of Nigerian budget for themselves, members of the Nigerian National Assembly (NASS) announce a drastic reduction in their mammoth salaries and allowances. The SINators and RepresentaTHIEVES announced that members of NASS will receive a token one naira per year as salary and will receive no other allowance.
Russia bans all alcohol and makes heroin use obligatory for membership in the ruling elite.
Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir return to earth in a space ship and offer to save anyone from the apocalypse who buys a copy of their new book, Existentialism for Idiots.
Bono releases a hit single to celebrate the global evangelizing of his humanitarian guru James Wolfensohn. The song is titled, "Banks Have Hearts Too." Merchandising for this song includes fair-trade organic T-shirts retailing at $100 each, produced courtesy of Bono and his wife's clothing label EDUN. The stylish limited-edition T-shirts feature a pop art picture of Wolfensohn with a naturalistic halo hovering over his head.
It becomes mandatory for all electronic consumer goods to be wrapped in 100% organic packaging at point of sale. For our safety it becomes law that all inefficient electrical products over six months old must be immediately replaced to help minimize environmental pollution. Redundant electrical goods are sent to the moon so that aliens (from a more technologically advanced culture) can recycle this waste.
After Chernobyl opens to tourism, the US Gulf Coast follows suit by offering SCUBA diving excursions in the dead coral reefs, walking tours of the oil-rich marshes, and gourmet courses on cooking with contaminated cuisine. Investors flock to the emerging market in the disaster tourism industry, guaranteed to stimulate the global economy with its limitless opportunities.
A scientist, right out of his laboratory, admits (in April or May) that capitalism has failed as an economic system. He will declare all the same that it's worth going on with the experiment another decade or two because capitalism, being so destructive, could turn out to be a valid cure for itself, especially in the present situation in which the patient (the whole world) is so debilitated that he could take only homeopathic medicine. The scientist will be given the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2012, after having corrected the word "decade" to "century."
With growing food shortages in the USA, General Foods recycles human excrement and Americans eat shit.
John Boehner sobs uncontrollably when Nancy Pelosi hands over the gavel, and a new era of Compassionate Conservatism begins in which the level of tears is inversely proportionate to the level of compassion.
In a desperate move to stimulate the economy before the start of the 2012 campaign, President Obama borrows a tactic from the sports industry and sells sponsorship to corporate America. The Citibank State of the Union address, delivered from the Halliburton House of Representatives chamber, raises an estimated $440,000,000. Obama holds an unprecedented number of press conferences in 2011 from the Monsanto White House Rose Garden. The profitable practice comes under fire when the phrase "Made in China" appears on US currency.
Fueled with anger over the lack of Change We Can Believe In, registered Democrats abandon en masse and vow to only support third-party candidates in order to pressure the party to the left. Then, Swans co-editors wake up and realize it was just another of those recurring dreams.
The Supreme Court votes 5 to 4 n favor of Apple's patent on the letter "i," reshapng the Englsh language and leadng to the ul2mate demeyes of newspapers, whose advertzng revenues are eaten up by royalty payments.
Beginning in June 2011, the 16th year of its quixotic endeavor, Swans will begin publishing in the lingua franca of the future. Peter Byrne's short story will start thus: If thr r chldrn ... thr mst be a fUtr, rt? (cf. NYT & Jennifer Egan, 12/19/10). Byrne will continue: "st la ve; wlcm t a brv nw wrl. Gl damry wl translt ... n I'm ot f hr," ptr brn wl concld.
W cn't wt t hv mr t cm.
Enjoy the ride. Bonsoir la compagnie and adicias.
1. The irreverent subset of the Swans collective that brings these Infamous Predictions to you features the usual clowns that perform at your local circus on a regular basis, whose cast this year is Femi Akomolafe, Michael Barker, Jan Baughman, Peter Byrne, Maxwell Clark, Fabio De Propris, Charles Marowitz, Jonah Raskin, and, of course, your fearless Gallic editor, who welcomes readers' flames, whines, and outrage while denying all responsibility for the reckless endeavor. Don't sue him. He is penniless. (back)
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