Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Dear Ghetto Shaman,

I read somewhere that people can smoke dung?   What’s this all about?

Sincerely,

Jack Tibolla

South Bend, Indiana

Dear Carl,

At times I have not had shit to smoke—beyond that it is sensationalism.

The Ghetto Shaman

Separation of State and Church

Pierce Winslow

I am floored at how this country touts its “freedom of religion” and how it claims to separate church and state. The truth is, these days you really only have freedom of religion if you are a member of one of several main-stream Christian religions, or to a lesser extent Judaism. And then the only reason that you have such freedom of religion is because you already agree with the laws in play. If you are a devotee of, oh lets say Voodoo, you are screwed, Dude. This article is going to sound a lot like the Crank Manifesto, but this shit is really PISSING ME OFF!

Don Your Peril-Sensitive Sunglasses Now

People seem to think that this country should favor Christians simply because it was founded by Christians. I’m sick of hearing “well, this country was founded by Christians so get out if you don’t like it.” Let us start here. Um, that is a LOAD OF SHIT! In fact there are many quotes from Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, John Adams, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison and others that indicate that they were not only not Christians, but they thought that organized religion in general was a bad idea (except, of course, for Voodoo). The founding fathers chose to loosely follow Christian doctrine when implementing American law because they believed that the Christian code of conduct reflected a certain degree of morality, and that that is necessary to prevent moral chaos. There is nothing promoting God, the Virgin Mother (yeah, right), or Jesus Christ any more than Allah, Buddha, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Voodoo Vikings. With that argument trashed, the founding fathers wrote down their intentions. They wrote what they meant and meant what they wrote. In fact, just to prevent us from making the stupid assumptions and judiciary decisions we are making these days they wrote “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people“. In other words, just because we didn’t specifically grant it doesn’t mean it isn’t granted. In fact, it seems to me that the overall mood here was to grant what is not specifically denied.

Keep in mind, also, that at the time of the writing of the Constitution most of the colonists had bailed Europe, endured months of nausea, vomiting, starvation, disease, sobriety and sometimes death crammed into tiny little vessels just to get away from persecution of one form or another, generally religious. It is ridiculous to believe that those that wrote “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” would intend to quash those peoples’ rights once they got here because they checked the wrong box under the heading of “Religion”.

With those things said, let us examine some of the major decisions being tossed around these days.

Gay Marriage

The last time I looked marriage was a religious construct. It is generally presided over by a holy man of some sort, right? It generally takes place in a church right? “What God has created here let no man put asunder”? That all says religion to me. So, since we supposedly have a separation of church and state what the hell is our government doing legislating marriage at all? There are those that say gay marriage corrupts the sanctity of marriage. Marriage? Sanctity? What sanctity? 50% of marriages fail. The same number have one spouse or the other cheating. Not to mention the fact that the Church didn’t even sanctify marriage until they discovered that they couldn’t stop it. Marriage was created by St. Paul to essentially pre-forgive the losers that could not resist the temptations of the flesh. The Christian elite, members of the Cult of Virginity, were the true Christians. Eventually they figured out that no one could, or would resist sex so the church just gave in and said “OK, you can screw, but just with her” (notice how no one has even heard of the Cult of Virginity any more?). We see how well that is working out. Churches can’t even agree on whether their holy people can marry or whether anyone can get unmarried. How can the government step in and make any decisions regarding marriage and still remain impartial? If homosexuals want to clamp on a ball and chain (as opposed to clamping a chain on a ball, ouch) who the hell cares? If you think it’s gross don’t go to the wedding. If you think it’s so wrong stop going to truck stop bathrooms and reaching your foot into the next stall.

Abortion

The religious zealot is willing to blow up a clinic and kill 20 people to prevent the abortion of a single fetus. Instead of getting a job and living their life, they take donations to park their fat asses outside of clinics waving signs, chanting slogans and blocking traffic so they can harass, intimidate and pour guilt upon already scared and desperate people. How Christian of them. Whatever happened to “walk a mile in someone’s shoes” and all of that holier than thou shit? Never mind that some of these mothers will likely die in childbirth taking their unborn children with them (assuming they get that far). Never mind that some of the mothers and/or fathers are not capable of raising a child. Never mind that some of these fetuses have major genetic or other birth defects that would make birth essentially a life sentence of cruel and unusual punishment (which used to be unconstitutional until W came along). I personally am not in favor of abortion, in my own life. I also acknowledge that I do not have the right to make that decision for other people. Sure, most Christian churches say that this is a sin at least or an abomination at worst (what’s the difference really? You’re still going on to burn in eternal hell-fire), but other religions have no position on the topic (Church of the Overhead Projector?) and thereby imposing whichever Christian regulations on me is a violation of my rights. Sit down and shut up.

Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Again, who the hell elected the Religious Right to determine what I feel is legitimate research? This is research that has great promise to cure a multitude of diseases. What about the Embryo? Well, what about the millions suffering from what will almost certainly be curable diseases? These religious freaks have no problem slaughtering a pig for their Easter dinner, or a turkey for their Thanksgiving dinner, or a mutilating a decent grape to make their sacramental wine (have you tasted that shit? Ecch. Jesus did not turn water into Mogan David now did he?) We don’t even have to kill the fetus. In fact, it’s much more productive to keep it around. Here we go, remove the would-be aborted fetuses and keep them in a Petri dish harvesting the occasional stem cell for research. That way no one dies, we won’t be faced with cloning humans to satisfy research needs, and we may be able to cure some diseases to further complicate the world population problem. That has no religious implications, or does it…

Save the Children

Remember, save the children even if there are way too many people living in a region to support them. Send them food and send them schools, but don’t teach them to use birth control or supply condoms so they will get HIV or get pregnant over and over, the way God intended. Then, because there are no abortions allowed, force them to have the children that they cannot support (and the very land upon which they live cannot support) and to whom they will likely pass on HIV. This will only serve to perpetuate, nay, expand the problem. But don’t worry, global warming will provide ample water and vegetation in a few short decades.

*whew* Breathe Pierce, breathe. Anyway, that’s their country and this is ours. Look what a religious government has done for the Kurds, Sunnis, Shiites, and, of course, the Taliban? Unless you want that shit right here at home keep those bible (or Koran, or Torah, or Book of the Dead) beating, fundamentalist bastards out of my government, dammit.

Mounting Pressure Forces Discord Staff to Return Stimulus Bonuses

Philadelphia, PA — CEO of the Daily Discord, Pierce Winslow announced his intentions today to retrieve all of the pencil sets that looked like pens distributed at this past year’s Christmas party.  The gifts were allegedly purchased with recently acquired stimulus funds.

“If my staff is going to bitch about everything,” said Winslow, “then they can type their articles with their own damn pencils.”

Mr. Winslow is said to be displaying increasingly bizarre behaviors.  He reportedly made rooster sounds in the middle of the interview and began hurling handfuls of the Discord’s office supplies from the agencies’ third-floor business suite onto some surprised motorists below. 

 “This is a sad day for the Discord,” admits the ezines’ Chief Vegas Correspondent, Bald Tony.  “And by sad, I mean typical.”

When asked if he would be honoring the mandate to return the item, Tony replied, “From my cold, dead…sure whatever.”

Area 51: The Undiscovered Country

Bald Tony

En-route to Area 51, Bald Tony takes the
time to lead Frodo and Samwise toward Mordor

One hundred and fifty miles northwest of Las Vegas, amidst the barren wasteland of Central Nevada, sits one of the most controversial areas in our country (besides Michael Vick’s Animal Shelter).  I’m talking, of course, about Rachel, Nevada, a one mailbox town so devoid of life it didn’t even appear on my GPS (and it really only has one mailbox, which also did not appear on my GPS).  The nearest real town to Rachel is sixty miles to the south.  There is no cell phone service and no gas station in or around Rachel.  The town motto is ‘Don’t Run Out of Gas in Rachel.’   They’re not kidding.  To accentuate that point, there is a sign next to the town motto that says, ‘We’re Not Kidding!’

In order to get to Rachel, Frank from CA, Greg from MD, and the Great Bald One himself trekked along the Extra Terrestrial Highway (speed limit warp 3).  It’s really named that.  Along with legalized gambling and prostitution, the state of Nevada apparently has a sense of humor.  It is so desolate on State Route 375 (ET Hwy), we drove 45 minutes without seeing another vehicle (at least on the ground).  The skies above were littered with strange discs, saucers, and mallowmar shaped spacecrafts (damn shame we never looked up).  In the middle of town sits a tow truck towing a UFO.  This oddity is the stuff of legend, or, as the Rachelinians like to call it, bullshit. 

Having been abducted one too many times,
Cleetus the tow truck driver plots his revenge

The only commercial building in Rachel is the A’Le’Inn, where I and my weary traveling companion feasted on the house special, the Alien Burger, with secret Alien sauce (possibly Heinz 51).  It was the best burger for miles…speaking of gas.  The A’Le’Inn has one television, forever tuned to the Sci-fi channel.  While waiting for the replicator to prepare our Borg-ers, we scoured the adjacent gift shop, and perused the memorabilia-filled walls covered with newspaper clippings and interesting photographs of Men in Black, stealth fighters, and other military spooks.  Similar to other alien close encounters, we seemed to have lost several hours at the A’Le’Inn—after we consumed a few too many Martian Mojitos.  The anal probes arrived courtesy of Cleetus the tow truck driver and his rocketeering roofies.  OK, that never happened.  We hope.  After the grub and grog our intrepid explorers meandered, Mojito meandered, towards the elusive Area 51. 

As most of you know, Area 51 is located literally in the middle of nowhere.  But, until you drive out there in the dead of night, it’s really tough to appreciate just how smack dab in the middle of nowhere this place is.   From the A’Le’Inn it was 25 minutes of twists and turns on gravel and dirt roads with no signage to speak of.  It was so dark, at one point we decided to turn off all the car lights, and we could not see our hand in front of our face.  Of course, I never lifted mine, where’s the fun in that?  I took Frank and Greg’s word for it.  As we rounded a small bend our headlights lit up two Men in Black.  They were in a dark SUV parked at the top of the nearest rise.  The SUV may not have been black (it was possibly grey) and the men may have only been in denim, but it was a dark, menacing denim.  The men spied at us warily as we spied at them warily in some sort of warily staring stare off.  A laser fight ensued…well, in the LucasFilm version of this article anyway.

At the gate we took many pictures of the signs and places that clearly warned about any such photography.  Try as we might, we could not find one sign that read: permission to use deadly force.  We waved causally at the Men in Dark Denim (click, click).  They ignored the pleasant gesture.  We did not see any UFOs on our journey, but we did see the strangest small red lights swerving around our chests every time the Men in Denim were about.

One more warning and this pic would never have been taken

Just as the realization hit this old gate was about all she wrote, nature called.  One too many Martian Mojitos, I suppose.  As soon as the sound of unzipping commenced, my friend called over in a hushed whisper, “Hold it.  At least until we’re out of sight of those MIBs.”  The thought of men with night vision goggles and high powered rifles allowed me to contain the contents of my bladder for a few more miles (until a suitable bush could be found).

The funny thing is; we were never really anywhere near Area 51.  The actual base is 12 miles from the barbed wire gates.  One thing is for sure, this place is more guarded than Bernie Madoff’s ATM card.  If we couldn’t get in with our combined expertise, no one can.  After slowly and carefully finding our way back to a paved road, we headed back to Sin City, with just enough gas to breakout of the grasp of that gasless desert trap, Rachel, Nevada.

Word to the wise: stay away from the secret alien sauce…and Cleetus and his rocketeering roofies, of course.

Easter Special Edition:
Jesus Lives!

Mii Plaza – Jesus, the accepted savior for millions of Christians world wide, largely believed to have ascended into heaven after a brief return from the dead back in AD 30, has been found alive and well in the virtual world of the Nintendo Wii. Fed up with the burdens and controversies surrounding being the central figure of the world’s largest religion, Jesus reportedly went into hiding to escape the crap.

“It’s a hassle” admits the messiah, “between the complaints from disgruntled victims, the “gimme gimme’s”, the perverted so-called holy men, and my name being used to justify everything from restricting freedom to mass-murdering crusades, I’ve had it.”

There have been a multitude of Jesus sightings since his departure from public life. He’s been seen everywhere from insane asylums to potato chips. However, recently the Lord has reportedly been making a meager living as the lowest ranked boxer in the hugely popular boxing game in Wii Sports, a video game suite included with millions of Nintendo Wii units sold world wide. He’s trying to lay low going by the alias David.

“It’s a living. I’ve been preaching humble existence for millennia,” states the savior, “This way not only can I keep millions entertained, I can give malcontents the opportunity to beat the shit out of me for whatever they perceive that I have done (or not done) to them. I also dabble in baseball, but I don’t have a large contract like some players. Yeah, I’m talkin’ to you Shouta!”

Many believe that the apocalypse is looming what with the coming end of the Myan calendar; the war, famine, pestilence, and death played out in our daily new reports; and the fact that these aspects match up with every prophecy from the Bible to Nostradamus to Izzy the Nose. We took this unique oppoortunity ask Jesus to address this point. All he had to say was “Oh go ask Vishnu, I’m on my wine break. Besides, miracles have no place in sports.”

Struggling Discord to Slash Crossword Puzzle!

Philadelphia, PA – During these trying economic times, Chief Executive Officer Pierce Winslow is trying to do everything possible to save the Daily Discord as well as avoid further staff layoffs. 

“We have a great staff,” stated Winslow, “just as long as they stay in separate states and lay off the hooch.”  Mr. Winslow reflected for a moment, “All right, they suck, but they’re all we got.” 

After Mr. Winslow announced his intention to nix the crossword puzzle, a staffer pointed out the Daily Discord does not have a crossword puzzle.  Mr. Winslow became enraged.  He tipped over the water cooler, declared war on Canada, and shouted something about the Zamboni Gypsies.  After Mr. Winslow collected himself, he resolved to correct this oversight by starting a weekly crossword puzzle before implementing his initial plan to discontinue it. 

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Dear Ghetto Shaman,

While searching for deeper shamanic states, I seem to only experience manic depressive states.  I hear voices and see shadows during the height of these manic phases.  Am I getting close?

Nancy O’Leary

Erie, PA

Dear Nancy,

Getting close?  Getting Clozaril is more like it.  Look, try harnessing your manic phases by pushing your creativity into higher vibrational frequencies, and then ask your doctor if an inpatient psych stay is right for you.

The Ghetto Shaman

California Cranken

The Crank

Did the people of California actually vote for Pelosi and Feinstein?  God, I hope our democracy is just hopelessly broken.  Someone rigged the election, yeah, that’s it.  A good old fashioned election rigging would restore my faith in the…ahhh, broken system.

I make a motion we have all Pelosi voters deported.  She scares the shit out of me. She has six brain cells and all of them on the far left side of her fucking gourd. Not to be outdone, Diane Feinstein deserves the new Stoopid Bitch of the Month award.  Feinstein may be the only vertebrate organism eyeing Pelosi’s six neurons longingly.  Oh, wait she’s  also a Democrat…never mind (someone please edit out the word vertebrate).

After Obama made such a big deal of alternative energy, Feinstein wants so stop solar and wind farms in the Mojave Desert. THE MOJAVE DESERT!! She said it will spoil the pristine desert. What a maroon.

Even Ahnold said “if not in duh desuht, den vhere de hell vould you put dem?”

I know where I would put dem, bitch, or maybe shove dem is more like it, you damn demented Dem dame.

Hey, how about we bring another power line from Arizona through the desert, so the residents of California can feel “environmental” while still heating their fucking pools. I’m SO tired of NIMBY from these Califuckheads. My spell check is not recognizing Califuckheads.  Fucking Microsoft.  You’re not familiar with NIMBY?  From my perspective it stands for: Not In My Backside Y’all.

California steals Arizona’s water and power, as they sit on the shores of the world’s largest ocean? Why don’t you do what the Arabs have been doing for decades?  …no, not fuck with the Jews.  Focus people!  I’m talking about desalination. Oh, that’s right; we can’t.  That would be cruelty to sodium.

Make your own fucking water, people. We, Arizonians, would if we had any. But even if we could, we’d probably have to pipe it all back to you mutherfuckin bastards anyway.

We need a wall all right, but not with Mexico. We need a wall between us and California. We should also make them responsible for their own power, their own water, and their own ass wipeage. Well, maybe we should work up to all three.  Let’s start with ass wipeage.  Then, a few years after the wall, when their all dead, we can harness their oceans, their pristine deserts, and maybe even build the first vertebrate Democrat.

A Crank can dream, can’t he?

Economy Forces Seven of Ten Discord Staffers to Move Back in with Their Parents

Philadelphia, PA—“Times are tough,” admitted the Discord’s Chief Executive, Pierce Winslow.

The Daily Discord tallied its’ eighth straight monthly loss in March. Complaints during this week’s staff meeting ranged from, “I gave up my job at the Circle-K for this?” to “I gave my job up at the 7-11 for this?”  The staff had a laundry list of complaints for Mr. Winslow this week.

“Morale is something nearing Abu Ghraib levels,” stated Winslow, “Er, the inmates, not the military.”

 “We got very little of the bailout funds,” complained Bald Tony.

“Yeah,” agreed Pokey McDooris, “just like good ol’ AIG, I’d gladly give back my bonus, but it was two pens that turned out to be pencils.” 

Mr. Winslow feels his staff is just a pack of overly pessimistic whiners.

“Besides,” said Winslow, “even before the recession seven out of ten Discord staffers lived with their parents.”

POSITION DESIRED: PRESIDENT OF THE DISCORD NATION

EDUCATION:

Faber College, PA: BS in Education (social sciences), with minors in marketing, industrial safety. BS, and a master’s degree in Anatomy by Brail.

I have studied the fine art of Commonsense (failed).

I have read three books (mostly).

I have a lifetime subscription to Hustler magazine, and have stayed in at least six Holliday Inns.

EMPLOYMENT:

(1998-present) I have worked in foreign relations. I have dealt with New Americans (NAs) as they try to manage convenience stores.  Most of these NAs do not speak English, have no business background, or the ability to count.  My role is to teach them common business sense, help them to embrace the American dream, and then take back their stores when they go bankrupt.

In the past I have been employed as a bartender, landscaper, dishwasher, inmate, High School Football Coach, and once made two dollars stripping, though not at the same time.

HOBBIES AND ASSOCIATIONS:

Ad-hoc lawyer, debater, writer, and normal American Beer Drinking Citizen (AB/DC).

As a bar room debater I have won over fifty debates by slipping out on the tab.

I lived for two years on small change from the town fountain, and pool hustling winnings.

REAL WORLD EXPERIENCES:

(See Hobbies and Associations)

ADDITIONAL EXPERIENCE:

Organizer and facilitator of over 100 social events (mostly keggers).

I have five years experience looking for Sasquatch, and recently began a quest to capture the Geico Money.

FUTURE GOALS:

To lead the Daily Discord Nation, using sarcastic wit and common sense, into national prominence with the ultimate goal of becoming the POTUS.  Then, with any luck, I will stop wasting my time searching for Sasquatch and the Geico Money.

First Soylent Green Plant Requesting Bailout Funds

First Soylent Green Plant Requesting Bailout Funds

Tampa, FL – “We may have bitten off more than we can chew,” stated CEO Bernie Hamilton.

Only an estimated one-in-thirty Floridians are desperate enough to eat people wafers.

“We will need that number to double in the coming months to really make this a go,” added Hamilton.

The economy is not the problem.

“It’s failing just fine, but people are just not embracing cannibalism as quickly as hoped.”

The grizzly discovery of a fingernail in one of the popular Triple Ss (the Soylent Steak Sandwich) has not helped the company’s image. Mr. Hamilton remains undaunted.

“You can’t make people omelets without breaking a few legs.”

Solyent Green, Inc. maintains that the clipping in question was a only a Lee Press-on Nail and was not technically human remains. When asked if it was a mistake leveling with the American people about the main ingredient in Soylent Green, Hamilton had this to say.

“Absolutely not.  For those still unsure, SGI is offering Soylent shakes with only half the human remains as the wafer variety.”

This marketing strategy is hoped to wean people onto their products.  Hamilton admitted the billboard ads ‘Grandpa, the Other White Meat’ and ‘Flesh is Good Food’, may have been a marketing foible.  The billboards have since been pulled and the government funding is hoped to kick off the more sensitive ad: ‘Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, So We Are Having X-mas Dinner After All.’

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Dear Ghetto Shaman,

With society collapsing, and all, some believe this is an ideal time to embrace the dharma.  All this fear is only increasing my beer consumption.  You seemed to have reconciled fear and beer.  What’s your secret? 

Tim Ferrence

Dear Tim,

To transcend the Wheel of Samsara, you must embrace many Zen-like contradictions and still make it back for happy hour. Read my latest work: Turn to Face the Great Mystery without Pissing on Your Shoes.  Read this a hundred times, if necessary.  Not the same book, mind you.  Purchase a hundred copies.  Each of my books should only be read once, but many readings are necessary to both transcend this world and to help me fend off the rent spirits.  I have explained to my landlady that I follow the Mayan calendar, so my rent should not be due until the Feathered Serpent ascends the great pyramid.  This argument has thus far failed to have the desired effect.

The Ghetto Shaman

POSITION DESIRED: ADVISOR TO THE INTEGRAL WARLORD

EDUCATION:

Faber College, PA. BA in Philosophy with a minor in Claymation Pornography.

Two time NCBA National Boxing Champion.

Studied T’ai Chi Ch’aun with Mantak Chia (not pet, just Chia).

Studied the ancient texts of Chang Li Ching, Yang Lu Chan, Lao Tze Lay, and I read Wilber’s A Brief History of Everything, twice (mostly sober).

EMPLOYMENT:

(1998-2008) worked with the most ruthless, aggressive, and volatile people in the world (other than Discord staff). I am best described as a social servant to the diagnose’m and medicate’m field of mental health. Enforced behavior plans in our public schools (mostly sober).

POET/GENIUS:

I’ve published a novel, and a controversial collection of limericks written on bar napkins. I’m a regular contributor to the Daily Discord where together we are sarcastically salving society.

CULTURAL FACILITATOR (ie. Town jackass):

I’ve developed a Barroom Constitution and written the compendium: Articles of Degeneration. I’ve been ejected from 21 bars, coffee shops, or diners (7 constitutionally viable and 14 unconstitutional). I’ve defended myself in 3 court hearings (won 2, lost 1). I’ve observed my brother defend himself in 10 court hearings (won 7, lost 3). I watched Judge Judy this week (in its entirety). I’ve studied the principles of logic and the logic of principles, and I challenge you to a game of chess (preferably naked).

Palin Outraged About Something

Wasilla, AK — Governor Sarah Palin told our own Cokie McGrath during an interview last week that she wanted to send a “strong signal” to the Obama Administration about his recent Special Olympics reference on the Tonight Show.

Governor Palin went on to say, “I resemble that remark!” and that the quote was a “tragedy to speds everywhere.”

When asked why she recently refused stimulus money for educating special needs children in her own state, she replied “I prefer those stimulus packages that go directly into those offshore accounts, for, you know, those CEO types who would vote for me. I find those Republican guys have the most stimulating packages.” 

When asked if she thought she was being a bit hypocritical, she replied “Hippowhatsas?  I’m not a doctor for Pete’s sake.”

Sarah Palin then winked, not because that was a joke, she didn’t realize the interview was not being videotaped.

Palin added, “I told you, America, you should have voted for me and Mr. Wrinkly!”

We Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest: Paranoia and Secret Societies

Mick Zano

Sorry kids, like it or not we’re heading smack-dab into what an old Chinese proverb describes as “interesting times.”  These special periods of human existence are chock-full of upheavals and heaping piles of uncertainty for the whole dysfunctional family.  What is coming, you ask?  What is this disturbance in the force that we all seem to sense? (Well, most of us seem to sense…)  I’ll say one thing: Never before has so much angst spilled into my therapy sessions.  Recently the public’s fears seem to have collectively multiplied, like a Tribble on Enzyte. 

In my 20 years of social service work, I’ve come face-to-face with an endless parade of paranoid schizophrenics, schizotypal conspiracy theorists, and armies of anti-social fringe monkeys (ASFM).  No longer do these people come to my office covered in aluminum foil (to keep the CIA from recording their thoughts); nor are they riddled with needle marks and imaginary bugs.  They don’t even arrive on copious amounts of Thorazine.  These folks are “normal,” middle-class, baseball-playing, apple-pie-cramming U.S. citizens.  They are scared shitless about this brave new world in which they now find themselves, but not as heavy on the Axis 1 or 2 as one would expect (if you follow).

Some of my clients think dried beans and purified water are the way to go, while others want to run from our congested, smog-filled, crime-ridden cities to the more rustic, drug-filled, welfare-ridden countryside.  Others are seeking sturdy wells, sturdy bunkers, or sturdy women (for their undisclosed locations, of course).

Everyone is trying to build a cocoon for the long winter, which, if Al Gore has anything to say about it, will last around 100,000 years. Some feel 9/11 was an inside job. Sorry, but Mr. Bush isn’t that industrious.  I always had him pegged as more of a fertilizer-filled-pickup-truck kind of guy.  Other Americans, like Citizen Pokey, are babbling endlessly about how the “Shit Goblins must die!” 

The super-volcano under Yellowstone is rumbling, there’s and endless “War on Error,” and don’t forget UFOs, climate change, magnetic pole reversals, the Rapture, Mayan Gods, pollution, hormonal imbalances, sterilization, chem trails, and a host of other nefarious government goodies. Place these in a tall glass, shake, stir, and lightly dust with coconut, and you’ve got yourself some pretty neurotic folks poking about Gotham.  Heck, the Joker OD’d and even Batman is punching random people in the face these days.  Fear-mongering doesn’t seem to be the route to go with a civilization already on the brink. (Thanks a bunch, Karl. Well, it did win you the 2004 election. Oh, yeah, thanks for that, too, asshole!)

People all over the country are fraught with insidious conspiracies. Most of these fears blossomed, like Turd Blossom, over the last eight ghastly years.  And who the hell are all these Illuminati people? And where did they come from? Are there phone booths that you walk into and “they” get to you?  These people are not just on the therapy couch or in the treatment center anymore, but in our coffee shops, shopping malls, and bars.  Like minutemen, they are always ready to spew their deep-seeded rabblerousing rhetoric.  It’s worse than the goddamn Jehovah’s Witnesses.

A client of mine started a conversation with me in rural Pennsylvania, and it was finished a year later in a coffee shop in the high desert of Arizona with someone else.  It always involves the Council on Foreign Relations, the North American Treaty Alliance, the Rothschild family, a bill called the S2433, and the top-secret existence of cannibalistic humanoid underground dwellers (CHUDs).  You may know them better as politicians (PUDs).

Where do all of these crazy theories being bandied about come from? You know, like the Rosicrucians, the Theosophical Society, and the Rieki Midgetonians. (I really need to stop hanging out with the Ghetto Shaman.) And, perhaps most importantly, who are the Shit Goblins? And why must they die? How do these esoteric philosophies fit into today’s alternative subcultures? The Theosophical Society, though clearly mired in some occultish kookiness, did champion an “evolution of consciousness” that eventually led to Transpersonal thought and, ultimately, the Discordians. The Shit Goblins Must Die, Dammit!

The Knights Templar have charged the imagination and spawned Dan Brown’s happy little yarns. Even the Vatican itself is steeped in mystery.  My favorite book on the subject is Tom Robbins’ Another Roadside Attraction. Speaking of which, if God is omnipotent, why the hell did he pick Pope Benedict the whatsas? Perhaps if the Catholic God is downgraded to “almost omnipotent,” he could salvage a following.

Fear of the Freemasons seems to have sparked these Illuminatians. Illuminatus, like Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, is a work of fiction, but Illuminatus was written about 30 years ago and is loosely based on some brief goings-on in eighteenth century Germany. People have a short memory, so I guess in about 30 years from now, the Knights Templar really will be guarding the offspring of Christ; and, at 70 years old, I will be explaining to some coffee shop Brownian that The Da Vinci Code was actually a movie and that the albino monk is not really trying to kill Tom Hanks. I can’t wait.

Scientologists are also common these days. They believe in Xenu and the Galactic Confederacy.  I, too, believe in Xenu, the Warrior Princess, and her little blond friend Gabrielle. In fact, I often have dreams about them—dreams involving leather.  The American west is filled with UFOoligists, who believe the truth is so far out there it would take the combined efforts of Mulder, Scully, and a colonoscope the size of the Pacific Highway to find the answer.  Sorry, rationalists, but the few rationalists left in our society are confined to those Ivory Towers of Academia. And guess what, bitches? We’re coming for you, too…

Freemasonry is alive and well in the 21st century, and there are Masons everywhere—even in my family.  Someone asked me to join once, but to paraphrase the immortal Groucho Marx, I would never join…short version: F, no. This organization is behind some of the unease that has birthed many of today’s cranky conspirators. Freemasonry has existed since the 16th century and has as many as five million members. Apparently, only the highest-level individuals are privy to the organization’s real goals, nefarious or otherwise.  It’s like in Scientology when you get to meet Xenu, Warrior Alien, or something.

Onward toward Illuminati-land.  The Council on Foreign Relations is a “think tank” started by the Rockefeller Foundation. Because so many high-profile business and political leaders are members, it is believed they are pulling the strings not only of the country, but of the entire globe. In the 1990s, William T. Still linked the Illuminati to the Rothschild family.  JP Morgan, the Rockefellers, and the Bushes eventually followed suit, and are all allegedly part of this pack of miscreants trying to bring about the New World Order—a theme mentioned prominently in one of Bush Senior’s speeches. Some posit the Illuminati infiltrated and subsumed the Freemasons, the Skull and Bones Society, and eventually the Daily Discord.  The Illuminati is an amalgamation of several conspiracy theories, not the least of which may involve Shit Goblins.

The Rothschilds, two of the richest dudes in history, ultimately dupe us into three world wars, the last of which will bring about a one-government rule, controlled by the Illuminati themselves. Even our own revered Ken Wilber speaks of global police at some point in the future, so any conspiracy theorist worth his weight in Haldol will insist the New Age movement is part of the population-tenderizing process. Lay down your arms, squat on a mat, meditate, and the world police will take care of you; sounds lovely.

This is why I’ve always said you can’t force anything. If we live long enough people will rise to increasingly higher levels of consciousness. Laws to “help” this process are easily perverted. This is also why unfair gun-control laws should not be tolerated. Similarly, any move toward integral world practice before the world is ready could easily be hijacked by ruthless Rothschild-types.

Recent legislation, namely Bill S2433, could give the United Nations considerably more power. S2433 is a bill that aims to reduce international poverty, but some claim it threatens our freedom and independence as a sovereign nation. The rest of this chapter from conspiracy-land involves the North American Union, which follows in the footsteps of the European Union and places Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. next on the agenda. It is feared this move could profoundly impact our Constitution, or what’s left of it. Well, it would explain why the only one talking about the 300,000+ people joining the party illegally from Mexico each day is Lou F-ing Dobbs.

One flaw I see in this sinister, centuries-old web of deceit is Fox News. While the Foxers are clearly ramping up for a war with Iran. They are not supporting, in any way, shape, or form, the strengthening of the United Nations. In fact, they are trying to tear the bitch down. If Bush is Illuminati, the talking points should be: (1) make Mahmoud Ahmadinejad look like an asshole (not very tough to do), and (2) shift control gradually to the U.N. This is clearly not the case, unless Hannity is messing up his talking points again.

On the other hand, I do question Obama’s actions. He is protecting Bush. Why? Either: (A) he is protecting some Dems mired too deep within Operation Dismantle Constitution; (B) he refuses to give back the One Ring (whoever does?); (C) he is too busy screwing up what’s left of the world; or (D) the Illuminati got to him!

The correct answer is (E) Mick needs to hit a pub now.

If the Illuminati are real and if Obama is outside the loop, he will be taken care of in short order. More than likely, if there is anything to this stuff, he is another stooge in a long line of stooges. I remain unsure of the existence of a master puppeteer, but one thing is for sure, they are all stooges. The illusion of government competence and security has forever been shattered. Even with our collective short-term memory, I do not believe confidence can easily be restored. Our government is a farce, of that I am certain. As for the particulars, who knows? The best argument against the Illuminati is the fact that Pat Robertson believes in it. Case closed. 

There are endless websites and YouTube historians ready to walk you through the centuries of Rothschild maneuverings. What I don’t understand is why someone hasn’t really addressed these claims. The information is specific and documents are shown at every turn. The argument is logical, but most mainstream media don’t address any of it in depth. Oh, wait—that’s right; they don’t address anything in depth. (Thinking = bad; shocking footage = good.)  Oh, and the Illuminati owns the media.

Shouldn’t someone respectable address some of these allegations? Most skeptical literature sums the whole thing up in one dismissive paragraph, which translates roughly as “Take your Haldol as prescribed.” If there’s nothing to it, then refute it.

U.S. News & World Report took a decent crack at it in one of their collector’s editions, Mysteries of History: Secret Societies.  I’ll say this much, if you think nothing interesting is going to happen in the next couple of decades, well, you best get back to American Idol. There’s only one thing science and religion can agree upon: the next hundred years are going to really suck. 

Here in Arizona, an estimated 18% of the population no longer recognizes our government’s authority and are preparing to secede from the union. We are apparently not that unusual. Nine states are quietly asserting their independence. Well, maybe something good will come from Bush. Someone pulled open the curtain, and the American presidency has been revealed. If anyone else is at the helm, behind some other secret curtain, they are Kissingerian sociopaths, to say the least. 

So, what is the answer? Can we right this train without bloodshed? Pokey and Wilber want to transcend and include, but it seems a little late for that now. After all, what from this civilization, besides Krispy Kreme, is really salvageable?

I survived my own existential angst period several years ago. So for those entering it now, don’t fret. It really isn’t worth the worry. Throughout human history, we have always lived in the shadow of the invading Huns, or the stalking tiger, or the Black Death (when Ozzy was with them, not Dio).  

All we have ever had is the zen-schmeckled now. Of course, some believe even the enlightenment movement is a way to enfeeble the masses, but I still feel that with change comes opportunity. After 9/11, we had an opportunity to start the healing process; but instead, we chose the lemon juice. This time around, we can put down our “Sinner Repent!” signs and hurl empty beer bottles at the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse…and the horses they ride in on. 

Preparation is good, I suppose, but I’m banking on a leap of consciousness. Turn that crazed frown upside down. The next several years will challenge even the most spiritually grounded among us to accept what is. This moment in history has been likened to an unprecedented opportunity for the surviving species…you know, cockroaches. One man’s apocalypse is another man’s Ragnarok. Oh, wait; I’m told those are both pretty bad. Well, a leap of consciousness is the best I’ve got, folks. Let me hang onto that, will ya? 

But who’s crazier: the people scared and preparing, or the people still in the dark? You know, like those people waiting for their stock options to rise like a Phoenix from the ashes of a decaying civilization.

Good luck with that.

Regardless of any of these wild assertions, the financial institutions and the government of the United States must be drastically overhauled or scraped. I would prefer enough people wake the hell up and take back our institutions peaceably. Civil war is so messy. But if you still have any doubt that we are on a precipice then allow me to be the first to push you into the abyss. It is much more un-American to sit by idly and watch this freak show continue uninterrupted or, worse yet, cheer it on like the Hannitys of the world. 

I want all of you right now to open up a window and yell out as loud as you can, “I’m mad as hell and I missed my Thorazine!”

Excellent.

All hail Xenu, Warrior Princess!

Now, if you will excuse me, I need to wrap my head with aluminum foil before the CIA starts their transmission.

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Ask The Ghetto Shaman

Dear Ghetto Shaman,

Are those half eaten Buffalo wings hanging around your neck?

Jackson Mitchell

San Diego, CA

Dear Jackson,

Only our oldest legends speak of a time when the mythical Buffalo could take flight across the…  All right, all right, Papa John’s Sherlock. 

The Ghetto Shaman