Return of the Chinese Landlord – Mike Chen’s AirBnB

4 Jan Mike Chen's Kitchen

I have been travelling with AirBnB for several years, and have made the obligatory good and bad experiences. But sometimes life still surprises me with a kick so low that it is more entertaining than hurtful. This is one of these stories, and I take it as occasion for a thorough review of Mike Chen’s AirBnB situation in Toronto, Ontario.

Personally, I don’t have high expectations when it comes to cheap lodging. All I really want is a place to cook my meals, a place to consume them, one to rest my weary body, and safe shelter for my stuff. My needs actually boil down to a clean kitchen and a clean bed room. As simple as that might seem, Mike Chen was able to disappoint on all accounts.

Mike Chen's AirBnB Rental

It looks continuous, but every store front signals one separate building. One of these five buildings is Mike’s rental place.

The Room

Let’s start with the room, because it’s the most obvious and least accessible flaw of this adventure. The mid-sized bedroom was relatively well maintained, and although both the fake hardwood floor and the old mattress were a bit squeaky, the general set up was neither uncomfortable nor out of the ordinary. The panorama was somewhat squandered by the old dresser-drawer with one out of three drawers missing. The absence of an actual dresser, and its replacement with a slightly worn display case increased the impression that the furniture was either hauled in from various yard sales, or had been acquired by a very skilled dumpster diver. Surprisingly, none of the furniture was actually dusty, except for the top shenves. You know – the places Chinese people can’t reach.

The shear fact that the heating vent in the ceiling was bisected by a hastily painted dry wall made it clear that this room had been added as an afterthought. The Chinese landlord also had also inserted a drywall ceiling, so as to block the sky light which would otherwise have provided a natural light source for my dark and sterile cell.

These general circumstances could have made my stay dull and solemn, but luckily the neighbouring house featured a constantly playing radio. Not loud enough to make out words, but sufficiently loud to recognize any song that you know. The radio literally never stopped playing, and it is only due the loud heating vent in the ceiling that I enjoyed times of relief from enforced radio play. The single small window of the room led out to the hallway, so not only could I hear all the other tenants passing by my room, I was also able to partake in their cooking efforts without ever getting up from my gnarly old chair.

Mike Chen bedroom

This bed room is not great. It’s also not unusual, or bad. Just normal, windowless Chinese rental.

Bath Room

Mike Chen Bath Room

A layer of dust, carbonate, and soap covers most surfaces to varying degrees. The top shelves in particular, because Chinese arms cannot reach there.

As in any other Chinese rental the bath room was plastered with notes, printed in surprisingly good English. One note asked “guests” to avoid flushing toilet paper down the drain, which provides you with a pretty accurate idea of the state of the draining power of said toilet. It also tells you something about the olfactory features of the bathroom: when you toss used toilet paper into the garbage bin, it is bound to develop a characteristic odour, reminiscent of any unsanitary Porter Potty or Forest Loo. Luckily, everyone ignored the paper warning.

However, in order to soil toilet paper with your rectal waste products you first have to find some, because the Chen House is one of those bring-your-own-paper rentals (which, obviously, you are not informed about upon booking). Needless to say that the bath room did not come with soap, towels, or any other kind of toiletries. The only gifts offered by management are two carbonate-encrusted drinking glasses on either side of the sink, so you could disgust the hell out of your tooth brush, if need be.

The absolute highlight of the bath room was the note on the inside of the door, saying “please help keep this bathroom clean”. A laudable notion, only betrayed by the crust of calcium carbonates covering the walls of the shower, the layer of grime on both of the cup boards, the dirt that freely floated across the floor, and the various pale greys that seemed to cover both waste bins AND the sink itself.

Mike Chen's Toronto Bath Room

Except for the floor very few surfaces in this bath room get cleaned regularly.

Cooking time

To me the ability to cook my own meals represents a vital part of the AirBnB experience. I always carry a set of bamboo cutlery, but for the actual process of food preparation I need to scout for rooms that feature a fully functional kitchen. I can’t afford to go out for three meals a day, so, yes, the kitchen matters.

Hood Fan cover at Mike Chen's

Someone actually tried to clean the cover of the hood fan. Why did he/she give up after 30% completion? Did the cleaner die or despair? We may never know.

Admittedly, Mike Chen’s place offered the most elementary equipment, such as microwave, fridge, stove, and a variety of utensils. The state of those items, however, was more than sketchy. The stove was functional, and after a quick clean-up it was ready to oblige my wishes. Yet, finding the appropriate utensils, even to cook up ordinary oat meal involved a laborious journey through the house, because the many shelves of the kitchen were nearly empty, and what little utensils were available, needed to be cleaned in order to avoid at least the most common diseases and infections.

Overall, the second floor contains six bed rooms and two kitchens, and I had to search both kitchens to collect enough equipment to start meal preparation. After finishing my breakfast I stored the pot, the plate, the chipped ceramic bowl, and the metal spoon (the single available piece of cutlery on the ENTIRE SECOND FLOOR!) in my room, so that I would not have to invest the same cleaning efforts before starting my next cooking adventure.

I don’t even want to talk about the greasy microwave, or the grimy fridge. The photos I took of the kitchen should be sufficiently scary to put you off food for a while, and induce a month-long diet on freshly trimmed tree bark. And if you lack the ability to see with your eyes, be assured that the smell of the fridge easily signals its willingness to spread diseases that the Western world has deemed extinct since the dawn of penicillin.

The general ambient of unease was artistically underlined by a variable mixture of dust, grease, and brown sauce that covered the shelves and doors of all cup boards. All this invites the general viewer to give the kitchen a thorough scrub, but with only two cleaning cloths and one towel available this effort would be rather limited in its scope, especially since all three of these rags are rather rigid, indicating that the cleaning cloths themselves have not undergone laundry for a little while.

Mike Chen's Kitchen

The remaining shelves of the kitchen are emptier than these. All are dusty and greasy, though.

Smelly Time

Talking of odours, there are a few rather uncomfortable issues to mention. Firstly the heating vent appears to feature a mediocre amount of dust, and after every heating cycle the room smells like an old sack.

The ancient hole in the wall, containing the aforementioned switch and fuse box, added to that problem. The space between the walls smelled of cold, old smoke, like a pre-war casino that has recently been unearthed by the world’s least ambitious archaeologist.

My hosts did not leave the place unsanitary, though. At least once a week someone came around, swept the floor, and infused some part of the common area with an unhealthy load of bleach. Given the choice between cockroach and airborne carcinogen I would not quite know which way to lean, but note that one can clean a bathroom without making it stink.

Now, all of that would be alright, if you could open a window, and swap the dusty, smoky, bleachy air from indoors with the dusty air from the street. But since my only window went out to the hallway it rather conflicted my nose further with the smell of cooking. At least most of the other tenants used the hood fan when they fried their morning beef, so the overall mixture was never overwhelmingly terrible.

Mike Chen hallway

During summer tenants can slouch on this dusty sofa, and stare at the twenty year old TV across the hallway. Why my room did not incorporate the rest of that sky light is beyond my understanding.

Been there, haven’t done that

Fridge filled with decaying stuff

This fridge does not contain the food of two AirBnB guests. This fridge is the result of at least half a year of ignorance.

 “Hold on!” I hear you screaming. (A remarkable feat, considering that I am writing this blog in your absence.) One might actually be inclined to believe that all of these flaws result from a temporary lack of enthusiasm regarding the health and safety of this Chinese rental dive. However, one would incline the wrong direction – the depth and extent of the dirt covering nearly every surface of the common space indicates that neither kitchen nor bath room have seen any domestic cleaning in half a year or longer.

Back when I lived in Calgary, Alberta, I supervised a house that had long-term tenants as well as AirBnB guests. From that experience I know what effort is involved in maintaining a house, and what it takes to keep its tenants happy. Ten minutes of cleaning every day already suffice for keeping most grime out of the common area. And even if you’re too lazy for that, one hour a week will keep kitchen and bath room in good shape.

My kitchen was always stocked with utensils, dishes, and a huge load of pots and pans. When someone didn’t have time to clean a bowl right away, or broke a plate, or lost a spoon, that accident never impeded on anyone else’s ability to cook, because there were always enough utensils left on the shelves, and those were always clean. Even today you can purchase a box of kitchen utensils for $10 at thrift stores or yard sales, so even IF your guests steal some cutlery, you still have plenty left.

Furthermore, having basic toiletries and cleaning equipment readily available under every sink makes it much easier for your guests and tenants to remove any dirt that threatens to destroy their comfort. The absence of buckets and clean rags made it impossible for me to give the dirty surfaces the scrub that they needed. The general state of Mike Chen’s AirBnB rental showed that little to no effort had been spent over the past year to relieve any surface of its unsanitary load.

Goemon's kitchen in Calgary

This was my kitchen back in Calgary. Mark the absence of grime, and the availability of clean equipment.

 

Chinese Paranoia

The signs of sketchy accommodation were visible from the beginning. When I told Mike via AirBnB about my potential arrival time on Saturday evening he did not reply to my electronic message. Instead, I found his front door locked and unattended. If it hadn’t been for a friend helping me with my luggage, I might have stood in the cold in front of that building for hours, because it took several phone calls to get someone to open the door for us. It is always problematic, if the landlord does not actually live at the premise, and does not have a suitable person to safeguard the front door in his stead.

It is also rather unusual for an AirBnB host to demand payment of a $100 security deposit, particularly if this is not mentioned in the online description. But it did not even stop there. When Mike’s mom finally arrived at the premise, and handed me the keys, she asked me to fill in a guest book with personal information, such as passport ID and phone number. I’m surprised she didn’t ask for my SIN card! When I asked if I could take a photo of the “guest book” she did not even hesitate to open it again, thus revealing a page filled with the personal information of a long train of other “guests” in her house. If anyone needs phone and passport numbers of international visitors to Toronto, give me a call, and we can strike a deal!

Cleanliness is not a Chinese invention

The whole affair is colourful and smelly. Much like this microwave.

Chinese Rental

Imagine you just got off the airplane, after six hours of flight and one hour of travel through a foreign city. When you arrive at your chosen dormitory you find it locked and in the dark, and without door bell. So you call up the land lord, and for twenty minutes you wait in the tea house next door for the arrival of keys. When the Mistress of Keys arrives she asks you to sign a contact sheet that contains the phone and passport information of various other tenants, and she has no issue with you photographing it. Your room features slightly broken furniture, and a whole in the wall that a house keeper needs to access infrequently in order to restore power to some rooms. When you try to relieve yourself of the burden of a long journey you suddenly realise that the toilet comes without paper, and somehow you need to clean out your crevices without leaving the unsanitary bathroom or clogging up the toilet drain. When you waddle back to your room, to carefully claim the soap from your luggage, so as to clean your welting fingers, your gaze falls upon brown pots and plates that suggest nobody has taken care of this property since at least the winter before. Welcome to Mike Chen’s Toronto!

In conclusion, the whole set-up of the house screams “Chinese Landlord Trap”. The building looks like it was built as a restaurant, but the new Chinese owners then employed drywall and a bucket of paint to compartmentalise each floor into rentable rooms. They did not quite maximise the use of space, which I am thankful for. I know Chinese landlords who would have cracked another two or three rooms out of that second floor.

In good Chinese tradition the landlord does not actually live near the property, and maintenance visits are so infrequent that you should be thankful to enjoy clean floors, and a continuous supply of warm air and hot water. Anything else would require the occasional wet cleaning cloth getting rubbed over dirty surfaces, but that is already too much to ask of someone who really just wants to make money off a property. The front of the building does indeed feature a shop of some sort, but for the entire duration of my stay I only saw the shop open when one of the tenants moved in or out.

As a result you receive living space that barely scratches over the minimum requirements of any Health & Safety inspector. There are no bed bugs or related vermin, and I guess the accessibility of emergency exits does not matter as long as you avoid setting the house on fire. But for my understanding of comfortable housing this residence falls a few miles short of its target, just about out of sight of anyone who likes to cook, or breathe deeply, or who sleeps uneasily, or people who don’t want to remove the soggy hair sieve from the bath tub to drain water from the shower.

Encrusted pot at Mike Chen's

Crusty black bottom line: the terrible state of Mike Chen’s rental place is not a temporary accident. It’s the result of considerable neglect.

PS.: As a matter of completeness I should mention that the floors of the house were relatively clean, and no bugs or related parasites could be sighted. Unsurprisingly, considering the weekly force of bleach that was employed on key aspects of the house. However, why the person who wiped the floors lived in complete ignorance of the rest of the house is beyond my comprehension.

Also, the host was readily approachable (via digital message), and when I asked for a one-day extension of my stay it was granted within twenty-four hours. My damage deposit was returned without hesitation, and the web camera that was mounted in the kitchen made me feel a limited amount of security.

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Jurassic Park – A Fallen Kingdom

12 Oct Tyrannosaurus bust from the times of Jurassic Park

There is much good to say about “Jurassic World – Fallen Kingdom”. There is also some monstrous mischief one can point at. But I am not here for that. Instead, I want to provide a brief discussion of the plot and the cinematic backdrop of that movie, and their implications for the direction of the franchise. And maybe, if Universal listens, the Jurassic Future may be bearable.

I recently saw a Facebook post in which a fan asked the following question: “The Rock, or maybe Jason Statham? Who do you want to see in Jurassic World 3?” Apart from the general idiocy of selecting actors before you even have a plot and a setting for a movie, this question sums up nicely into what kind of abysmal chaos the Jurassic franchise has been tossed by recent decisions of its prime shareholders. The Jurassic World has been degraded to a string of action movies with dinosaurs, not unlike that dreadfully plot-twisted TV show “Primeval”. What once was the epiphany of novel dinosaur media has become a rather ordinary dinosaur thrill ride, in which it is no longer heresy to ask “What if the govenator had shouted ‘Mr Hammond, get to the choppa’?”

Tyrannosaurus bust from the times of Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park is so dead that you can hang it on the wall. Except, I no longer want to.

If you have deep moral concerns when you imagine Arnold Schwarzenegger or Sly Stallone harking through the next Jurassic movie, and tossing about their Action Movie punch lines, you most likely have a deep and comfortable relationship to the original Jurassic series. So do I; having been a grand fan of Jurassic Park since its inception in German cinemas in 1993. To date it remains the only movie that I saw twice in a movie theatre, and I am an incredibly picky consumer when it comes to buying cinema tickets. So, you know this topic is very dear to me.

Jurassic World (JW) was a great movie, and a good addition to the franchise. Even though I hated the trailer, I bought the Collector’s Edition BluRay. Because the movie turned out to be filled with Jurassic Moments, little details and ideas that were plucked directly from the original film, or even from Michael Crichton’s novel. You see those old jeeps in the run-down shed, or the string of boats floating down the jungle river, or the dino heads peaking through tall grass, and as a fan you are immediately pulled into a hodge podge of fond memories. Fallen Kingdom (JW2) serves those fond memories as well, but it is a lot less sneaky and artsy about it. JW provided its own story, and occasionally strew in a few sprinkles of magic Jurassic dust. JW2 looks like the directors added those sprinkles as an afterthought during the editing process, and as a result you spot flaring sparks of reminiscence in every scene. Contrastingly, JW kindled a barely noticeable flame that constantly nourished your inner fan fire.

Jurassic World Evolution

Jurassic World worked so well because it used the given dimensions of the Jurassic Park for its own plot. Fallen Kingdom destroyed everything, and dragged the remainders along.

This is all the more disappointing when you realize how well the movie actually starts. The first two acts are nearly a perfect remake of Jurassic Park 2 (JP2). Ian Malcolm ranting, old billionaire chanting, a Track & Rescue mission for the dinosaurs, a hunter consumed by his pride and his lust for trophies, and even the lost girl found its way into the script (and the writers prepared a slick way of pointing her out to the audience). Everything down to the betrayal in the jungle was a magnificent rehash of JP2. It was beautiful. And it ended so abruptly, so heart-wrenching melancholic, with the destruction of Jurassic Park, both physically and mentally.

The ending of Act 2 (the volcano exploding) would have created the perfect metaphor, because the kingdom has fallen, both that of the Jurassic island, as well as that of its brilliant creator, Steven Spielberg, the man who directed such a startling bright light onto the original trilogy. The path leading up to this point was speckled with coprolites (fossilised poop), but all the previous directors pulled through with their respective agendas, and they created an inclusive universe for every dinosaur fan to enjoy. And then JA Bayona cocked it up, by prolonging our agony.

Act 2 should have marked the imperfect ending to an imperfect era. The mess at the mansion that is to follow the dinosaur theft would set a great premise for a totally new start on the Jurassic franchise. We meet mostly new characters, new buyers for the dinosaurs, new uses for the genetic research, new cinematic environments, new villains … you could not be much more different from Jurassic Park without selling those dinos by the bucket at KFC.

Jurassic Park - A Fallen Kingdom

This is where Jurassic Park should have ended, so as to start the Jurassic World on a fresh set.

“Jurassic Park is dead; long live Jurassic World.” That should have been the cut. I would have agreed with that message. If the directors had just continued on their new path, all the old JP-fans would have seen their dreams die in the wake of a volcano. A sad, yet satisfying end at the hands of a higher power.

Alas, they didn’t. Instead of creating a clean cut between Old and New the directors deemed it appropriate to prolong our misery by dragging our good old Jurassic Park into the sinister new mansion, and beat it around until all the main characters succumbed to the dreadfully dour, marketing-oriented piece of dinosaur merchandise that appears to define all movies and other monster media since the turn of the century.

With the auction and the emergence of arms dealers JW2 had its plot set, and would have gotten away as a cool monster movie. But instead of letting JP-fans weep their bitter-sweet tears of discontinuation, the directors dragged the twitching corps of Steven Spielberg’s masterpiece into the studio light, walked it around on puppeteer strings, and applauded its endurance. The second half of JW2 would have worked well without the raptor clicking its claw in close-up, without the raptor chase through the dinosaur diorama, without the jammed door of the food elevator, or any of the other elements that the directors stole right from the bleeding corps that was once the pinnacle of dinosaur entertainment. Some scenes look as if the directors tried to cram in as many ideas from the original film as they possibly could, just to drag along the maximum number of old Jurassic-Park-fans, although the latter were already kicking and screaming when the Big Game Hunter tried to pull dragon teeth on Isla Nublar. JW2 is more of a Jurassic Remake than a solid self-sustained movie. And I effing hate needless remakes of great movies!

Jurassic World - Fallen Kingdom kitchen scene

Seriously? The kitchen scene? Again?! – At certain points it feels as if the producers tried to remake Jurassic Park and Lost World into one movie.

One of the reasons why the old JP trilogy worked so well was the fact that it was a self-contained series of movies. JP2 made a story mistake by moving things out to San Diego, but we forgive them, because the King-Kong-type chapter ends with a happy happy reunion on a beautiful tropic dinosaur island. Apart from that single hick-up all the story of the original films developed on the Jurassic islands. Even Jurassic World stuck to that plan. The old directors knew that once they moved any part of the main story off to the continent, there was no way of keeping it there. I mean: the biggest conceptual cliff hanger in JP was a can of Barbasol that rolled out of the hands of a dying computer technician! Spielberg made it very clear that everything that happened on the island also stayed on the island.

But, no, executive producer Bayona had to set them dinosaurs free in North America, so now those critters are everywhere, can develop any sort of plot, lean into everyone’s life. Until now Jurassic Park had its own little domain – an island off the coast of Costa Rica. But with the resolve of Fallen Kingdom it has infested an entire continent AND the oceans, so very soon we will see a Resident-Evil-type plague of monster lizards, with all of its incongruity and plot insanity. Have we learned nothing from reloading the Matrix?! The bigger any given movie universe gets, the less believable becomes its actual scenario, because the directors start to toy with forces that they do not comprehend, and can never hope to control.

Jurassic World - Fallen Kingdom characters

Fallen Kingdom showed much potential for interesting character development. Unfortunately, most of them just ran about, and died.

The whole string of Jurassic Park movies has always focused on questions of morality. Questions such as: Should we necessarily utilise the genetic powers we are given, and what responsibilities come with such a re-imagined genesis? Even JP3 juggles with philosophical topics: how much harm can a small property transgression do, and how many raptor eggs can one steal before nature bites back? If you look closely, the dinosaurs were always used as vehicles to transport an overarching discussion about the powers of nature and man.

“Fallen Kingdom” tosses most of these greater goals out of the window, and replaces them with a dumb fight of Good Vs. Evil; Team Owen Vs. Arms Dealer. The movie blatantly moves the franchise into the genre of action movies, terminating all of the moral discussions that the dealings around Jurassic Park ever started. As mentioned earlier, I am cool with that termination. The franchise deserves a new start. But you pricks are founding your new movie on the heritage of a film that isn’t even cold yet, and you frequently point at the twitching corps, asking us to love both of you equally. That just doesn’t work, guys!

Jurassic Park Triceratops

Jurassic Park took its time. Neitehr the characters nor the dinosaurs were rushed through the film. This “contained” drama allowed the viewer to appreciate the film.

Jurassic Park could have died with this movie, and the world would have been all the better for it. You would have lost some of the old fans, but most of them would have followed you into the brave new world. However, the executive producers kept resuscitating the original film, no matter how brain-dead it already was, and that was awful to watch. The Fallen Kingdom could have marked the beginning of a new Jurassic era, but instead of allowing the old king of dinosaurs a dignified death the directors rather kept violating its unconscious body.

The next producer will have to make an executive decision on whether to continue this dreadfully puppeteer dance with the dead, and keep alienating the fans, or lay its carcass to rest, and create a new universe. It is too late to take a step back. We can’t just imagine that JW2 does not exist, much like Star-Wars-fans cannot un-see Jarjar Binks. I therefore propose to start anew, and allow the fans to regroup around a fresh franchise. Let Jurassic Park die. And raise a new Jurassic Kingdom in its place.

Sonderfall Maaßen: mach die Hobby-Paranoia zum Beruf

27 Sep

Eigentlich wollte ich ja nichts mehr über den Wahlkampf zum Bayerischen Landtag 2018 schreiben. Aber dann wurde dieser Maaßen befördert, und in Folge totaler Blamage aller beteiligten Parteien sehe ich mich nun genötigt erneut zur Tastatur zu greifen.

Dabei fing doch alles so harmlos an. Ende August kam es im groben Rahmen des Stadtfestes zu Chemnitz zum Handgemenge, wobei ein Deutscher erstochen wurde. Die Polizei nahm daraufhin mehrere Tatverdächtige fest. Das hätte es eigentlich schon gewesen sein können, aber wie sich herausstellte waren die Verdächtigen nicht deutschen Ursprungs, und das führte spontan zu Komplikationen. Denn hierzulande werden echte Deutsche gefälligst von echten Deutschen erstochen. Anstatt also die Polizei einfach ihre Arbeit machen zu lassen griff man in Sachsen eine handfeste Tradition im Namen des Fremdenhasses randalierend durch die Straßen zu ziehen. Also wie in Bayern, nur halt mit mehr Gewaltbereitschaft. Da haben unsere Ost-Nazis einfach demografische Vorteile.

Chemnitz via Getty Images

Nazis brauchen eigentlich keinen Grund um ihre Dummheit auszuführen. Aber wenn sie einen finden feiern sie eine schöne braune Party. via Getty Images

Im Rahmen dieser spontan zusammengeflickten Demonstrationen kam es zu unschönen Szenen bei denen anders-aussehende Mitmenschen durch die Straßen oder von Plätzen gejagt wurden. Auch das ist im AfD-geprägten Raum kein Novum mehr. Seit Jahren kursieren im Internet Videos die dokumentieren wo und wann Ausländer von Rechtsextremen angepöbelt oder angegriffen werden. Was genau also den Oberaufseher des Verfassungsschutzes, H-G Maaßen, dazu veranlasste sich ein einzelnes Video vom 26. August herauszunehemn und dessen Echtheit in Frage zu stellen lässt sich nur schwierig aufarbeiten. Vielleicht war ihm ja einfach nur langweilig. Jedenfalls ließ sich Herr Maaßen gut zwei Wochen nach der initialen Messerattacke dazu verleiten vor die Presse zu treten und die Geschehnisse zu kommentieren. Vor den Ohren des hochseriösen Boulevardpapiers „Bild“ sagte er: „Nach meiner vorsichtigen Bewertung sprechen gute Gründe dafür, dass es sich um eine gezielte Falschinformation handelt, um möglicherweise die Öffentlichkeit von dem Mord in Chemnitz abzulenken.“ Auf die angeblichen „Belege“ die der verfasste Schützer dabei zitiert warten wir bis heute vergeblich. Vermutlich weil er sich die genau aus der braunen Soße gezupft hat die auch seinem Chef, König Horst, als primäre Ideenquelle dient.

Jetzt kann man lange und ausdauernd darüber diskutieren, welche Personengruppen hierzulande Interesse daran hätten von einem „Mord […] abzulenken“. Da diese Art Vertuschungstaktik traditionell in den Arbeitsbereich des Verfassungsschutzes fällt, könnte man zudem meinen, Maaßen fühle sich einfach in der Befehlskette übergangen. Aber diese Diskussion hilft uns überhaupt nicht dabei zu verstehen, warum Maaßen lieber Verschwörungstheorien aus der Taufe hebt als zuzugeben, dass es in Ostdeutschland eine rechte Szene gibt. Es gibt bei uns im Osten viele gewaltbereite Nazis. Das ist schon lange bekannt, nicht erst seitdem der Verfassungsschutz erfolglos versuchte die NSU-Mordserie zu vertuschen. Rechte Gewalt lässt sich einfach nicht schönreden. Wegreden schon gar nicht. Herr Maaßen sah und sieht das anders, und genau darum riefen führende Politiker umgehend nach seinem Abgang von der politischen Bühne.

HG Maassen via Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz

Würden Sie von diesem Filz-Igel eine Verfassung kaufen? Mir fällt jedenfalls kein öffentlicher Posten ein an dem ich dieses Gesicht gern sehen würde. – Foto via Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz

Dem Superminister für Heimat, Inneres und Bau (letzteres gibt mir bis heute Rätsel auf) war es jedoch wichtig seinem geistigen CDU-Genossen den Rücken zu stärken. Selbst nachdem Vertreter seiner eigenen Partei Kritik an Maaßens Verschwörungs- und Vertuschungstheorien äußerten blieb König Horst bei seiner strittigen Meinung, dass Maaßen richtig gehandelt habe. Als dann der öffentliche Druck zu groß wurde um den obersten Verfassungsschützer im Amt zu halten, setzte sich Seehofer fix für eine Beförderung desselben in sein eigenes Ministerium ein: Maaßen sollte bei 20% Gehaltserhöhung Staatssekretär im Innenministerium werden. Selbst der SPD, welche ja in den vergangenen fünf Jahren nie mit Kritik an der Regierungsführung sparte, leuchtete diese Beförderung sofort ein. Frau Nahles, die Vorsitzende des inoffiziellen Merkel-Fanclubs, stimmte dem Versetzungsvorschlag umgehend zu. Über den enormen politischen Spagat der die SPD seit Jahren dazu befähigt die Regierungsführung zu kritisieren und selbige gleichzeitig zu unterstützen wird an anderer Stelle zu sprechen sein. Soviel Zeit haben wir heute nicht.

Frau Nahles jedenfalls begründete ihre Zustimmung zum Beförderungspakt mit einem drohenden Bruch der Koalition. Wozu wir eine Koalition überhaupt brauchen die sich nur mit sich selbst beschäftigt, und die ständig irgendwelchen Landtagswahlkämpfern Geschenke überreicht, sei mal dahingestellt. Was wir aber auswerten sollten ist die Sinnhaftigkeit einer Regierung die Verschwörungstheoretiker mit Beförderungen belohnt.

Warum kann der HG Maaßen eigentlich nicht einfach seine Arbeit machen? Seine Äußerungen im Rahmen der rechtsextremen Übergriffe rund um Chemnitz tun überhaupt nichts zum Schutz der Verfassung. Schön wäre hingegen, wenn der Verfassungsschutz mal hart durchgreifen würde gegen Nazis und Rechtspopulisten, also Leute die aktiv die Integrität des deutschen Staates gefährden. Glattrasierte Demonstranten die den Hitlergruß winken – sofort inhaftieren. Menschen die verbal gegen andere Menschengruppen hetzen – sofort einsperren. Aber da fühlen sich zu viele Politiker des deutschen Bundestages vermutlich selbst angesprochen, weswegen eine entsprechende Regelung hierzulande in absehbarer Zeit nicht greifen kann.

Indes hat Frau Merkel nunmehr eingesehen, dass sie selbst in dieser Affäre nicht schnell und hart genug durchgegriffen hat. In einer Pressekonferenz am 24.9. merkelte sie an, dass es irgendwie doof sei, wie die Koalition total am Volkswillen vorbei entschieden hätte. War ja auch nicht zu erwarten, dass der Pöbel sich einer eigenen Meinung zur Unfähigkeit der sie verwaltenden Regierung erdreistet. Frau Merkel hat jedenfalls eingesehen, was ein Mensch der komplette Unfähigkeit im Amt beweist nicht verdient: eine Beförderung. Jetzt gilt es ihrer Lobbyisten-Clique klarzumachen was er stattdessen verdient: einen saftigen Rausschmiss.

Wäre ich Sicherheitsbeauftragter eines Mechanikerbetriebes, und unter meiner Aufsicht fiele einem minderbemittelten Arbeiter der Schwingschleifer auf den Clownsfuß, und ich stellte mich unaufgefordert vor die Presse und sagte: „die Juden warn’s.“ Dann stünde ich am Folgetag mit einigen anderen schwer vermittelbaren Trotteln vor dem nächstgelegenen Arbeitsamt.

Wenn ich aber als Präsident des Verfassungsschutzes anstatt meiner Arbeit nachzugehen wilde Theorien verbreite, über die Inszenierung einer rechten Szene durch linksradikale Verschwörungsgruppen, dann schafft man für mich einen Posten als „Sonderberater“ im Innenministerium. Im Grunde ist die Botschaft aus dem Ministerium doch folgende: „Diese weltfremde Paranoia ist so ausgefallen und für unsere eigenen Zwecke zielführend, davon brauchen wir unbedingt mehr. Zukünftig machst du das hauptberuflich.“

Vielen Dank an die SPD, für ihr gewohntes Stammeln und Schweigen zu Themen die Wählen bewegen. Danke an die CDU für die Bereitstellung des Streitobjektes. Und Danke an die CSU für die bedingungslose Unterstützung realitätsferner Verschwörungsphantasien. Weniger hatten wir von Euch auch nie erwartet.

Urheberrechtsverletzung

Ich schätze ja bis Ende des Jahres ist der Herr Maaßen entweder von der öffentlichen Bühne verschwunden, oder in die Parteipropaganda der CSU integriert. Er passt da einfach rein. – Bild via paolo-calleri.de

Stop advertising your sex, unless you want to

2 Sep

A friend of mine recently posted the story of a woman who thinks that ladies should not be forced to wear bras. I agree. Very specific items of clothing should only be stipulated in very specific environments. Like contour-covering tops in a school, or their absence in a topless bar. But although I merely expressed that I found the whole discussion ridiculous, the argument quickly escalated into a discussion regarding the public display of sexuality. Naturally, most commentators chose to misunderstand my thoughts.

Clothes set people apart, and women are way more aware of that than men. Just look around the local mall. Almost all of the younger men wear jeans and t-shirt, and as they age they replace the latter with a chequered shirt. This is what men wear. Most of the time we don’t put much time into choosing our wardrobe, because we simply don’t know any better. We wear jeans and t-shirt, because this attire is nearly always appropriate.

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For a man this attire is already very inventive. The occasions on which I wear a tie are very rare indeed.

Women, however, have to make a statement with their choice of clothing. They cannot bear wearing the same outfit as any of the other two thousand ladies at the mall, so they go through great lengths to select very specific items of clothing.  They don’t usually think of it in this way, but they do want to look different. There really is nothing to discuss here. Clothes set people apart, and women are aware of it.

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Men don’t wear pants like these for reasons of comfort.

Some clothing is functional, like the brightly coloured attire of a fire fighter. Some clothing is unifying, like the uniforms of store clerks. Some clothing is sexually suggestive, like the shiny pants that outline every crevice of the bum.

During mating season the ass of baboons swells up and reddens. This is to inform the other sex that it is time to choose a partner for collaborative efforts of saving the species. During mating season most male song birds are brightly coloured, and perform crazy dances or songs. The lady birds choose their sexual partners based on this display. Male deer wear elaborate displays of antlers, for the same reason.

This is what the biologist calls a sexual display. The display sets the individual apart from all other animals, and signals that this might be the right mate. “You like my grand display of antlers? Then come over here for some sweet loving, chiqua-deer!”

Primates do not have antlers, or feathers, so they rely on other visual clues to advertise their sexuality. In baboons it’s the ass. In humans it’s breasts. Big breasts promise a great survival rate for the offspring, so they are favoured over smaller milk-producers. Again, this is a simple biological deduction. You don’t need to be aware of it; it happens anyway. Just the same, women prefer muscular men as partners, because they promise a great degree of protection. These are simple sexual cues that most people react to.

Many women use make-up to accentuate their lips, or cheeks, or eye lashes. These women are “advertising” their lips, cheeks, or eye lashes. They intentionally set these things apart from everything else, and thus advertise them. This is not really subject to debate; there is nothing detestable about wearing make-up. If you want to show a big mouth, or small eyes, or clumsy legs, you can totally do that. This is your choice, and you shall have it. Just be aware that biologists call this “advertising”. It has nothing to do with market goods or sell-outs. You are merely putting a specific part of yourself on display. And there is NOTHING wrong with that.

You cannot detest the word itself, because it has the right of seniority. “Advertisement” is derived from the Latin advertere, meaning “to draw one’s attention towards something”. Contesting the meaning of the word puts you in one line with ignorant push-bullies like Donald Trump or Kellyanne Conway. Words have meanings. You can’t change those meanings just by ignoring them.

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When the heirs of Fukushima chose the name of their new mascot they obviously did not care about words and their meanings. Please don’t make that mistake.

When you are wearing a muscle shirt, or a crop top, or ass-hugging pants, you are calling attention to those particular aspects of your body. You are “advertising” them. Many people do this on purpose. A magician, for example, advertises his hands, to distract you from the cards hidden on the table. A cop advertises his arsenal of weapons and utilities, in order to discourage violence. A stripper advertises his massive penis, to create sexual tension among the onlookers, and challenge them for a bigger tip.

None of this is new; none of it is in an ordinary way problematic. Women nowadays call attention to their breasts and booties through tight-fitting clothes, or “scandalously” short pieces of cloth that leave very little to imagination. Most women know fully well that specific items of clothing make them sexually more attractive, and they chose these items for that effect. You don’t wear low-crop pants because your vagina needs the extra air; you wear them because you “look good in them”. In other words, you are calling attention to your reproductive organs and your buttocks; you are advertising your sexuality. Men do the same when they stuff a sock down their pants, or wear shirts that are one size to small for them.

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If you don’t want people to talk about your bum, maybe don’t wear these pants.

Mind the difference between advertising sexual attractiveness, and advertising sex. You can “look good” without promoting coitus. You can look “slutty” without creating personal attraction. These are two very distinctive concepts. It is acceptable to look sexy in public, it is not acceptable to “look for sex”. The latter would either be called sexual predation, or prostitution, depending on which end of the condom you’re on. Neither of which is acceptable outside of the Red Lights District.

Now, I agree that people have a right to dress sexy in public. But this must be open for commentary. If you are carrying your melons to the market, the customers are allowed to debate their shape and size. Likewise, if you have really big breasts, and you conceal them only behind a string bikini, you are making your breasts a discussable subject. Everything that is different, particular, or extraordinary is open for public commentary. This is called “freedom of speech”.

The fruit vendor won’t forbid you to talk about his discoloured melons just because he finds that conversation uncomfortable. If he wouldn’t want people to talk about his melons, he would have covered them up. Similarly, the only way to prevent people from talking about your booty is by hiding it.

If you don’t want people to talk about your body, then don’t advertise it. If you want to discourage comments about your lips, don’t colour them brightly red. You have no reason to feel offended, repressed, or objectified, if you cover your breasts with a latex top that lifts your breasts, and shows your nipples. The owner of a fancy restaurant has any right to refuse you entry in such attire. You chose that garment because it makes you look sexy, so don’t complain when people say you look sexy. You cannot dress in a way that draws looks, and then forbid people to look.

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If you dress like this, and claim you don’t want to be looked at, you are being extremely dishonest.

This is not taking away from any debate on sexual predation. Rape is bad; there are no valid excuses. I am only saying that women who utilise particular garments to advertise their sexual traits have no claim to innocence in a verbal argument. In an open society it is always allowed to talk about noteworthy things, be it the size of a sports car, the voice of a busker, or the shape of buttocks. If you put it on display, it is fair game for conversation. If you don’t want it talked about, don’t put it on display.

Heul doch! Türkische Diktatoren und deutsche Hetze

23 Jul Mesut Özil via 123rf.com

Ich interessiere mich eigentlich überhaupt nicht für Fußball. Immer nur mauern, immer schauspielern; immer erst fünf Sekunden auf dem Rasen herumrollen bis die richtige Kameraperspektive gefunden ist. Langweilig! Selbst von der gerade erst vergangenen Weltmeisterschaft in Russland habe ich nur ein Spiel gesehen – zufälligerweise exakt das Spiel in dem die deutsche Nationalmannschaft glimpflich davongekommen ist. Und auch das nur, weil ich im Parkclub eine Einmietung betreut habe bei der die Gastgeber unbedingt das Spiel auf unseren Fernsehern verfolgen wollten. Nur so kann man mich überhaupt dazu bewegen mich zum Fußball zu äußern: indem man unabdingbar und laut lärmend um mich herumdribbeln.

So nun las ich in der Morgenzeitung über den Rückzug von Mesut Özil aus der deutschen Nationalmannschaft, begründet nicht, wie sonst üblich, mit altersbedingtem Leistungsabfall, schlechter Presse, oder höherer Gehaltsaussicht im Trainerposten, sondern durch Fremdenfeindlichkeit. Das Thema ist natürlich ein alter Hut, und wird hierzulande mittlerweile mit Gähnen kommentiert. Umso interessanter ist allerdings die Diskussion unter den Kommentierenden.

Mesut Özil via 123rf.com

Mesut Özi bleibt immer in Bewegung. Auf dem Platz rollt er in seinem eigenen politischen Abfall; außerhalb weich er deutschem Rassismus aus. via 123rf.com

Die deutschen Pressestimmen lassen in ihrer Darstellung keinen Zweifel daran, dass hier ein politisches Neymar-Manöver stattfindet. Erneut geht es um Özils werbewirksames Foto mit Sultan Erdogan, kurz vor der türkischen Präsidentenwahl 2018. Erneut geht es um Özils fotografische Unterstützung eines mutmaßlichen Diktators, und um die Frage ob ein gebürtiger Deutscher sich in die politische Agenda eines osteuropäischen Gewaltregimes einspannen lassen sollte.

Wer aber Özils Erklärung gelesen hat, weiß, dass die Presse sich hier ihre eigene Geschichte zurechtbastelt. Ganz offiziell begründet der Gelsenkirchener mit den türkischen Wurzeln seinen Rücktritt mit dem plakativen Rassismus der ihm in Deutschland entgegenschlägt. Und das sollte man eigentlich auch genau so respektieren.

Natürlich ist von Nationalspielern eine gewisse Abhärtung gefragt. Jede Putzhilfe muss in ihrem Arbeitsumfeld mentale Erniedrigungen ertragen; da sollten Pressesternchen mit Millionengehältern auch nicht zimperlich sein. Kann gut sein, dass der ehemalige Nationalspieler mit derart viel Rassismus und Fremdenhass konfrontiert wurde, dass es ihm einfach zuviel wurde. Da kann man schon mal seinen Job kündigen, wenn man sich am Arbeitsplatz nicht mehr wohl fühlt. Angeblich zahlt Arsenal London ihm um die €20 Millionen jährlich, und die Inselbewohner sind ja auch nicht gerade Musterbeispiele der Toleranz. Bei den von Özil vorgebrachten Anschuldigungen gegen deutsche „Fußballfans“ insgesamt, und Vertreter des DFB im speziellen, wundert es mich nicht, dass er seinen hiesigen Posten aufgibt. Das Londoner Gehalt reicht locker aus um mehrere Großfamilien bis ans Ende ihrer Tage durchzufüttern; der zusätzliche Stress in der deutschen Nationalelf, und die damit verbundene Moppelkotze die durch die hiesigen Boulevardblätter strömt, muss man sich bei aller Vaterlandsliebe nicht antun.

Mesut Özil Nationalabschied via Twitter

Mesut Özils Nationalabschied via Twitter. Um Politik geht’s da auch, aber seine Begründung fußt erstmal auf Fremdenfeindlichkeit. Und da hat er recht.

Eine wesentliche Kritik muss ich aber doch anbringen. Wer sich ungezwungen mit dem türkischen Amts-Sultan ablichten lässt, der kann sich nicht darüber beschweren als Deutsch-Türke bezeichnet zu werden. Du bist Deutscher, mit türkischer Familie. Es gab keinen deutschen Nationalspieler ohne türkische Familie der sich mit Erdogan fotografieren ließ. Die Verbindung ist daher so offensichtlich wie jener zu deinen Sponsoren Mercedes und Adidas. Erdogan hat ja nicht einmal was in Özils Spendenbox geworfen; warum also die Werbetrommel für ihn rühren?

Da kannst du gern hinterher beteuern nichts gewusst zu haben, von den Inhaftierungen und Foltern, dem versuchten Genozid an den Kurden, der Presseverfolgung, dem Verbot kritischer Meinungen, der Anstrebung einer Diktatur. Über Erdogans schändliches Verhalten wurde jahrelang und ausführlich berichtet. Wenn du davor deine Augen verschließt ist das deine eigene, bewusste Entscheidung, die sich nicht durch „Respekt vor dem Amt“ wegwischen lässt. Wer einen Diktator unterstützt, und sei es nur verbal, der ist hierzulande gezwungen sich dazu zu äußern. Politisches Engagement lässt sich durch kein Sportabzeichen der Welt überkleben, und in diesem Punkt fehlt bei Mesut Özil bis heute jede Einsicht.

Sportplatz in Alesund, Norwegen

Blühende Landschaften, nicht nur im Osten. Hier mal ein friedliches Bild von einem Sportplatz in Norwegen.

Mein Fazit ist dies: Mesut Özil spielt nicht mehr für die deutsche Nationalmannschaft, und hat seine Entscheidung mit der offenen Fremdenfeindlichkeit deutscher Personen und der politischen Agenda des hiesigen Fußballbundes begründet. Dafür respektiere ich ihn. Er hat aber auch maßgeblich dazu beigetragen, dass im mittleren Osten ein neuer Diktator an die Macht streben kann, und hat in der anschließenden Diskussion selbst die Rassismuskarte gezogen. Und für dieses politische Naymar-Manöver denunziere ich ihn.

Die CSU gehört nicht zu Deutschland – König Horst und sein Gefolge

26 Jun

Im Jahre der Kanzlerin 2007 wurde ich zum ersten Mal auf die CSU aufmerksam. Ich hatte mich schon vorher mäßig für Politik interessiert, aber die fadenscheinige Debatte um Jugendschutz und Gewalt in Videospielen die von der CSU damals losgetreten wurde hat mir dann doch erhöhte Aufmerksamkeit aufgedrängt.

Dabei gab es durchaus schon vor der pseudo-Christlichen Machübernahme Grund zur Besorgnis. Zum Beispiel als Stammel-Stoiber 2005 der politischen Bewegungen in den neuen Bundesländern gewahr wurde und proklamierte er „akzeptiere nicht, dass der Osten bestimmt, wer in Deutschland Kanzler wird.“ Als er dann in seiner Entschuldigung (!) mehrere Tage später meinte, dass es ja keine Probleme gäbe, wenn es überall so aussähe wie in Bayern, ahnte man doch wo der politische Horizont der CSU endet.

Pünktlich zum Landtags-Wahlkampf 2007 entdeckte dann Bayerns Innenminister Günther Beckstein das Thema Jugendschutz für seine Parteiklientel, und behauptete, entgegen jeder wissenschaftlichen Erkenntnis, der Konsum von Actionspielen würde „die Hemmschwellen für die eigene Gewaltbereitschaft in der realen Welt“ verringern. Becksteins Kampagne war so erfolgreich, dass die CSU bei der Landtagswahl erstmalig unter die fünzig-Prozent-Marke rutschte, wohl auch weil Deutsche Spielemagazine die Worthülsen erkannten und die „Killerspiele“-propagierenden CSU-Hirsche als „Spielekiller“ entlarvten. Das Jugendschutzgesetz blieb übrigens von der Aktion weitgehend unberührt. Einzig, USK-18-Spiele dürfen nicht mehr frei beworben werden, was Versandhäusern wie Amazon Rücken und Brieftasche gestärkt hat.

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Beckstein Spielekiller-Debatte 2007 offenbarte erneut die Sinnlosigkeit der CSU. Na, wer erkennt alle vier Prollos?!

Nennenswert waren auch die Beiträge der CSU-Ministerin für Verbraucherschutz, Nahrung und Agrarwirtschaft, Ilse Aigner, die wie kaum ein Minister zuvor die Agrarfunktionäre vor den Verbrauchern schütze. Nahrungs-Ilse hat die Agrarwirtschaft in dermaßen viele freiwillige (!) Selbstkontrollen gezwungen, dass die meisten Massentierhalter und Wurstfabrikanten mittlerweile zweimal täglich in ihrem Geldspeicher schwimmen müssen, um den Geruch vor Tierfäule und Pflanzengift abzuschaben den sie kontrollfrei auf den Deutschen Markt schieben.

Und nun auch noch König Horst. Der Innenminister der sich fast ausschließlich mit den Europäischen und Deutschen Außengrenzen beschäftigt. Der Heimatminister der den Zusammenhalt stärkt indem er Menschen muslimischen Glaubens explizit ausgrenzt. Der Bauminister der sich noch 2013 gegen die Nutzung von Windenergie und den Bau von Stromtrassen in Bayern einsetzte, wohl in der Hoffnung die Bayrische Industrie würde von fröhlichen blau-weißen Kälbern auf ihrem Weg zum Schlachthof mit Batterien versorgt werden.

Neuerdings fordert der egozentrische Platzhirsch auch noch EU-rechtswidrige Zurückweisungen von Flüchtlingen an den in Deutschland nicht-vorhandenen Grenzübergängen zu Nachbarstaaten. Die von König Horst angeregte Debatte/Erpressung vor dem Hintergrund der Flüchtlichgsverteilung innerhalb Europas ist symptomatisch für alle politischen Themen die die CSU in den letzten zwanzig Jahren angefasst hat – die Diskussion ist einseitig uninformiert; sie wird ohne tatsächliche Argumente geführt; und die angepriesenen „Lösungsvorschläge“ erfüllen keinerlei Zweck außer der temporären Gewinnung rechts-konservativer Wähler im eigenen Bundesland.

Urheberrechtsverletzung

Die CSU macht sich mit ihrer rechten Polemik in Deutschland nicht viele Freunde. via paolo-calleri.de

Seit zwanzig Jahren führt die CSU mit ihren konservativen Balzritualen die verbündeten Kollegen der CDU vor, und den Deutschen Wähler an der Brieftasche herum. In zwanzig Jahren gab es von den unchristlichen Asozialen keine Gesetzesentwürfe die nicht in erster Linie dem Wahlkampf im eigenen Bundesland dienten. Seit 1949 spukt die gemeinschaftliche Bundestagsfraktion von CDU und CSU im deutschen Bundestag umher, und spätestens seit der Jahrtausendwende zeigt die CSU keinerlei Interesse am Bürgertum das über solide Nazi-Polemik hinausginge.

Die CSU will auf Bundesebene nicht mitgestalten, hat nicht das Interesse des Bürgers im Auge, und setzte sich nicht für den wie-auch-immer-gearteten Schutz des Bürgers ein. Ansonsten hätten die Bayern ihre politischen Ämter dazu genutzt die Energieversorgung zu gewährleisten, Polizisten einzustellen, oder Lebensmittelhersteller zu kontrollieren. All diese Themen lagen und/oder liegen in der CSU-Kompetenz; blieben aber in Ermangelung echten Interesses unberührt. Jüngste Äußerungen führender CSU-Politiker haben erneut gezeigt, dass diese Partei ausschließlich mit ihrem eigenen Machterhalt beschäftigt ist. Dieses Problem lässt sich nicht spontan lösen, da sich Dummheit und Arroganz nicht verbieten lassen.

Aber zumindest kann die CDU den angerichteten Schaden stark begrenzen, indem sie die Koalition mit jener Partei aufkündigt, und die Kampfhähne der CSU zurückschickt in ihre Heimat, wo sie auf immer ihren Machtkampf gegen die Realität weiterführen mögen. Ganz im Sinne der eigenen Außenpolitik – egal was aus den Problemkindern wird, Hauptsache ich muss die nicht mehr sehen.

Sweet, stoned Alabama – 48% paedophilia is still *buargh*

14 Dec The Korean War Memorial in Washington D.C.

In a dramatic electoral race the people of the USA have once again shown that not #TheDonald ruins the grand freedom country, but rather its voting inhabitants. In November 2017 the state of Alabama revealed its state of idiocy, as senators and president alike advertised or excused the work of a paedophile instead of focusing on any form of politics.

For me as a European man the topic of US-politics has always been an easy target for cynical jokes. The average political debate in the USA has less substance than a snow flake in Kenya, which makes it so easy to fry it. The campaign of senator candidate Roy Moore was no different, focusing solely on throwing dirt, and completely ignoring any form of politics. Instead of discussing any issue that is actually relevant for the average citizen, such as affording health care, or fighting crime of colour, the entire campaign focused on Moore’s sexual misdemeanour.

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Now, Donald Trump is as racist and uninformed as they get, but the real problem with US politics is the majority that voted for him.

Only in the USA can a child molester grab a mic and say “immorality sweeps our land”, and demand a seat in the senate. Only in the USA can people with the moral conscience of a burning lawn cross get elected for a major position of political power. I know, those are only allegations. Allegations that are backed by the reports of numerous victims and witnesses, a signature in a high school year book, and Moore’s own words, admitting that he became aware of his future wife when he watched the 15-year old girl perform at a dance recital, at a time when he was about a decade older, and probably had no business watching those girls perform anyway.

But even those well-founded allegations were not really scandalous anymore, which explains why 48% of the voters supported child molester Roy Moore instead of his Democrat opponent Doug Jones. Because for a Republican voter it is far less creepy if the attorney general calls up your 14-year old daughter in gym class, and asks what she is wearing, than it is to speak for the Democrat political party. Certainly the Democratic Party has their flaws, one key issue being their support of legal choice for women to control the fate of their own body, another being the prosecution of pointy ghosts who kill Afro-Americans with baseball bats. But do those flaws really bear heavier than those of a middle-aged cowboy who sexually preys on under-aged girls in the local mall?

For a 48% minority of Alamaba voters the answer is yes. Yes, standing for progress is worse than molesting children. And that is the real burden of US-America. That country will never be able to achieve a state of peace and justice, as long as an informed political debate has a lower public rating than a sex offender who preys on children. It’s the perfect nightmare of any teacher: you drop the words “discussion time”, and immediately half of your class rolls out their fire arms, and barricades themselves behind their desks. It is terrifying because this is the central element of democracy – an open and informed discussion, to find a moral compromise that is acceptable for the informed majority. And it is that discussion that at least half of the US-citizens are barring themselves against. So, when it became obvious that Roy Moore was a paedophile the central political question remained: “Democrat or Republican?”

Capitol Washinton D.C.

For the majority of US voters politics is not a question of ideas and opinions. It is a question of party allegiance, which pretty much negates all honest discourse.

As much as they want to tell you otherwise – people don’t matter to US-Americans, at least not as much as political allegiance. That is why the USA continue to fail; even when the Republicans role out the worst refusals from the local prison, the brand “Republican” still grants them instant approval. No facts wanted.