[Look for your weekly fix from the one and only Henry Rollins right here on West Coast Sound every Thursday, and come back tomorrow for the awesomely annotated playlist for his Sunday KCRW broadcast.]
See also: Henry Rollins: Remembering Ray Manzarek
As I write this I am still out here in the rapidly rising temperatures of the D.C.-MD-VA area, shooting endless hours of history-focused content. We are working our asses off, girlfriend!
There is no getting out of it — this is how these shows are made. When we are heading into hour 14, I check myself and realize that I am fine, actually. It makes me wonder if I am a valuable asset and perhaps might have a modicum of talent for this kind of work or if I am just really good at taking a beating and showing up again and again. Yes, it is the latter.
A couple of days ago, I was listening to Rush Limbaugh link Hawaii Five-0 to the horrible Cleveland kidnapping case and, predictably, to President Obama. Partway through his corny bombastics, I realized he was talking about me!
From the gelatinous Fount Rushmore:
I happened last night to watch Hawaii Five-0 on CBS. Hawaii Five-0's premise last night was kidnapped girls, held until they were 18, and then let go or killed. Well, always killed, by a couple doing it for the welfare benefits. Reprobate husband and wife. The husband, a lazy SOB, claiming he had a disability and couldn't work. They kidnapped young girls and kept them in shackles. This was the premise of just a TV show, but I thought, 'Wow, this is fascinating.' Kept them in shackles, in a hidden room, in their run-down house somewhere on Oahu.
The Five-0 team trying to find them for the parents. One girl was missing for 12 years, found dead somewhere out in the hinterlands. And the Five-0 team, whatever the show is, they tracked him down, they found out what it was, and the guy was simply kidnapping these girls to provide tax exemption and qualifications for welfare benefits, so he didn't have to work. And then when they were no longer useful, at age 18, he killed them. Until, of course, Five-0 came on and saved the day.
Now I don't know what happened in Cleveland, but I couldn't help but make the connection. I mean, if everyone else in the low-information crowd is gonna use TV for reality, why can't I?
So, here it is, three women, missing nine-plus years, found alive, all were teenagers when they disappeared. … Does anybody know yet why? Has the story advanced yet? … Three brothers, not related to the three women, have been arrested in Cleveland, which voted Obama. [shouts] Not that that's got anything to do with anything. One of who has a baby. Double welfare benefits if one of the women has a baby. … Fascinating, here the same thing happened last night on Hawaii Five-0 and I guarantee you, people wanna know why it happened on TV. It is for real.
I played the part of the “reprobate husband” in that particular episode. Amazing that a television show brought me so close to this draft-evading drug addict. There goes a few degrees of separation. Damn. I really liked those degrees.
The thought of this wheezy waste of mama's cooking watching me as he prepared the raw sewage for his daily bowel twitch into the hog trough simultaneously depressed and inspired me. Allow me to explain.
It is slugs like Limbaugh who embolden America's enemies, slow economic growth and all but guarantee future wars. They work relentlessly to dim the potential of future generations. More guns, more bad food, bad health, bad choices, bad decisions and catastrophic results. This is where these people make their money. Their cowardice cheapens the human experience and wastes time.
Fortunately for the majority of us, it is simply not working, and the herd that follows them is thinning. I am happy to have provided an opportunity for Limbaugh, à la Rommel, to go farther into the Dumbass Desert as his fuel supply diminishes.
A few nights ago, in a rare night off, I was on a street I grew up on. A man recognized me and told me that he and his wife had come to America from Serbia and how lucky they felt to be here, and that some music I made meant a lot to him. An hour later, I met him again as he, his wife and their two kids were walking. I pointed out a place I used to live in 40 years ago and noted how cool it was that we both now have this neighborhood in common.
I am so happy he and his wife are here. I am so happy that they are as American as I am. I feel lucky to share this country and this century with them and their two children.
It is moments like these that render all the Limbaughs to mere background noise. No matter how rough things can be at times, many Americans are optimistic and on the move. This drives Rush & Co. absolutely nuts.
It is this energized optimism that encourages groups like the Newtown Moms and the millions of us who stand by them to persevere. It is this peaceful but insistent forward movement, operating on a glaring lack of fear, that illicit anger and confusion from those who have chosen the Hysterical Paranoia App. Instead of what Lincoln advised we utilize in 1838:
“Reason, cold, calculating, unimpassioned reason, must furnish all the materials for our future support and defence.”
Rush Limbaugh has to pull it out of his ass on a daily basis. It must be a drag when your fans are terrifying and all you get out of the deal is money and the adoration of people who hang “Don't tread on me” flags from their porches as they await home invasion from Big Government.
The rest of us are hauling our asses into the future. And don't we look good doing it!