Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Christopher Hitchens - Trashing the Dead or The New Necromancy

I know it an unsightly boorish thing to question the wit, the unquestioned wit of a Brit who helps the dumbed down American landscape elevate itself to new highs of undeserved grandeur.

Tea time, High Tea, cocktail party. When is it “appropriate to say fuck in public?”

Not over the body of a Japanese man who lived through two of the most tragic days thus far in Human Existence and in two of the most unfortunate places to witness our shared Human Tragedy – Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

“WTF” is all the incredibly talented but constantly drunk and boorish Christopher Hitchens has to say about the sufferings of a 93 year old Japanese man.

O Lucky Man - Sometimes "WTF?" is the only rational response to a situation
The brute fact must also be faced that there is something approximately 30 percent farcical, even funny, about the whole tale. There's almost no point in not laughing about it. The late Alan Clark, Tory historian and amoral wit, once drew up a list of the occasions on which it is permissible to employ the word fuck in polite society. One of his examples was, "What the fuck was that?" as uttered by the mayor of Hiroshima. Add to this the mayor of Nagasaki exclaiming the same thing just as Yamaguchi stumbles onstage, and you can arguably build a bit of a routine around it. Unfeeling, you say? Not particularly. It isn't my idea that these capricious catastrophes strike the just and the unjust with such regularity, or that they are soothingly explained away by the pseudo-compassionate. Of all the great cosmic questions, WTF still strikes me as one of the most pressing, relevant, and ultimately humane.
I think it a bit disrespectful if not downright vulgar to have devoted a whole spiel – burlesque set up for a punch line at a cocktail party and to not mention the bits and pieces of suffering this Japanese man went through because he perhaps was lucky or unlucky to have survived after being at two very unfortunate events in human history.

The New York Times did as usual write an outstanding Obituary for Mister Tsutomu Yamaguchi.

Which brings me to the new necromancy of the cocktail party set and of the man who has trashed the dead before in the form of Mother Teresa of Calcutta. No doubt Mr. Hitchens will be writing soon about that new necromancy of the rich and elite with whom he most disdainfully must fraternize with because nobody else is as good or as smart or as brilliant as hisself.

On a macro history level, I agree that Truman had to drop the bomb to save American and Japanese casualties. I am talking grunts and soldiers here on both sides. I agree because I try to empathize with the little people on the ground in the micro part of that historic equation. Which makes me wonder if Mr. Hitchens has any empathy at all for mere people.

I have not read the writing part of Mr. Hitchens trashing of Mother Teresa but watched as all us little people can do - some YouTube – a three part documentary “Hell’s Angel” referring to Mother Teresa of Calcutta. His delivery is methodical and well spoken. He delivers script verbally as good as he writes it. As I said before he is an incredibly talented man now working to raise the American literary levels higher. The documentary is the best piece of propaganda I have ever seen. It’s polished Pravda like style delivers me back to those days of us against them in the cold war.

Hitchens’ “us” is atheism and the “them” are the would be saints like Teresa who kissed the asses of the rich, powerful and evil to fund her distribution of crumbs to the poor. I begin to understand the opera of the church and the role of a devil’s advocate in the production like process that makes an official saint of the RC church.

For a moment I almost believed the propaganda about what a monster Teresa is in the eyes of an atheist. Why do people do good things in the name of some abstract or unseen entity called G-d?

I begin to realize why I am uncomfortable with atheism and atheists. When they shed their allegiance to any belief system, many of them expose their lack of empathy towards humanity.

Treating Teresa on a macro level of history suits the author and propagandist and eliminates the little guy out of the equation. That perhaps belief in non-belief, atheism, as a belief and new religion is as totalitarian as any gone before it.

So too on one level of humanity, the rich and famous can make money, war and words of comfort from coffee table magazine writers. They cannot understand “why the other half live”. A troubled conscience perhaps?

I must thank Mister Tsutomu Yamaguchi for living his meager life full of suffering. I must thank him for his efforts late in life to join against nuclear proliferation. I must thank him for his suffering, of wearing bandages for fifteen years to heal the scars of man’s imposition of inhumanity onto humanity (macro onto micro).

I cannot apologize for the human condition and the need by the uncaring elite to wage war at the expense of the “other half” factored out of all present economic and political equations of all so called modern or post modern success.

Rest in peace Mister Yamaguchi. You have done much for human history by your much more than mere life and presence on this planet.

And thank you too Christopher for making me aware of why I believe in God but not religion.

Today, the human equation, and the light within, are still very real to me.


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