morning 03.17.17

Tricky blogging with a three year old squirming in my lap, having me to explain the use of a space bar and asking when he can go swimming.

Rex Tillerson Rejects Talks With North Korea on Nuclear Program. North Korea threatens nuclear war. Poor Japan. This is terrifying because the Trump administration really is stupid enough to attempt regime change using Seal Team 6. Fall out won’t bother them because it would put China in an extremely precarious situation. Likely nothing too extreme will come of this. I wrung my hands for years in worry over maneuvering against Iran during the second Bush administration.  Still… Cheney wasn’t stupid and seemed to have a faction in the administration working against him. No such restraint here.

Trump’s NASA budget cancels Europa lander and Asteroid Redirect Mission. Reckon it’s not worth getting too worked up, since we’re in load more trouble. Odd that there was no mention of changing priority to the Moon over Mars.

Lakes on Titan may fizz with nitrogen bubbles. Cassini.

It wasn’t just Greece: Archaeologists find early democratic societies in the Americas. “Western civilization.” Ha. Tres Zapotes. Tlaxcallan. Mexico. Very, very interesting.

Collective governments do tend to rise and fall in cycles, Blanton says. In Oaxaca, the political pendulum swung between collectivity and autocracy every 200 to 300 years, judging from shifts in the layouts of dominant sites and histories recorded by colonial chroniclers. “Democracy isn’t a one-shot deal that happened one time. It comes and goes, and it’s very difficult to sustain,” he says.

Fresh look at burials, mass graves, tells a new story of Cahokia. Mound 72.

“When the Spanish and the French came into the southeast as early as the 1500s, they identified these kinds of societies in which both males and females have rank,” he said. “Really, the division here is not gender; it’s class.”

Earliest Depiction of ‘Fiery Serpent’ Found in Medieval PaintingDracunculus medinensis. Guinea worm. 15th century.

Interview with Alan Moore, by Dominic Wells. I still haven’t cracked open Jerusalem.

The Sheffield Tape Archive is a Post-Punk Demo Treasure Trove.

How Sebastian Gorka Catapulted From Far-Right Obscurity In Hungary To The White House. Thomas A. Saunders III is a name previously unfamiliar.

More and more Moore

Someone wound up posting the same Alan Moore video on Metafilter and commenters added some more links.

Alan Moore answers 75 questions from readers on Goodreads. Whew. That’s a lot to chew through and that’s a significant factor in hwy I appreciate him so much. He’s eager to engage and share.

  • Robert Altman gets a thumb’s up and John Waters gets a scolding for elevating scum like John Wayne Gacy. (I’ve not watched that Altman film, nor have I seen Polanski’s “Repulsion”.)
  • He loves The Blind Owl! This is no surprise, but it’s still great to see in print. Reading the quotes from the book on the Wikipedia entry remind me that it’s right in Moore’s wheelhouse. Flann O’Brien too. Heh.
  • He’s perfectly justified to turn up his nose as DC, but he’s being petty about most of his work there. He waves off any love for John Constantine for most of his existence. Oddly, he loves Garth Ennis, which makes me wonder where his cutoff point on Constantine is. I have no affinity for the work of Ennis. Eh, my favorite Constantine is Jamie Delano’s anyway. It’s baffling why anyone would want Moore to write any comic for DC or Marvel at this point.
  • It’s fun to see how he waves off he doesn’t read comics much, but he’s familiar with Phonogram, The Wicked + the Divine, and Saga. Oh, you fibbing old bastard. He mentions Si Spurrier and I feel a twinge of guilt for not picking up The Spire. That’s a wrong that needs righting.
  • He’s met a demon from the Book of Tobit, eh? Asmodeus?
  • Has he ever visited Providence, Rhode Island: ” I’m a big fan of remote viewing.” Ha!
  • Lynd Ward. This seems like something Biblioklept posted and I passed to a coworker at bookstore, then forgot. Oops. Madman’s Drum. I need to remember that.

Annotations of Moore’s Providence. I’ve not yet read Providence yet. I probably should have scooped up that comic, but Neonomicon got under my skin in a way I didn’t like. As impressive as it was, I hesitate to go for a second helping of that horror.

EXIST

Alan Moore narrates a 40 minute documentary EXIST on sleep paralysis.

A friend of mine had numerous experience with sleep paralysis, which he wove into an elaborate mythology of alien entities with enigmatic agendas. He turned that mythology into a fantastic body of songs.

I’ve suffered from sleep paralysis myself a few times, one of those times when I had the flu with a high fever. Herne the Hunter was my interlocutor.1

  1. I just realize how much the imagery of Herne the Hunter plays a role in the tv show Hannibal. []

interview with Ed Brubaker on the Comics Reporter

An interview with Ed Brubaker on the Comics Reporter. I’m mortified that Brubaker is finally calling it quits with Captain America, but it’s understandable that he’s tired and ready to move on. Eight years is a damned long run for a Big Two superhero comic. Besides, I probably love Sleeper and Criminal more than his Captain America, which is saying quite a lot. There’s musing on his collaborators through various projects, nothing terribly revealing, although how he and Sean Phillip arrived on the design of the Fatale collection is interesting.

The thing that bugs me most is that he really does seem to be friends with Brian Bendis, one of the laziest hacks writing in superhero comics.

Brubaker goes into the great depth about the Before Watchmen and Alan Moore controversy. I haven’t been paying too much attention to the matter, being sympathetic to Moore, but optimistic a decent comic book could result from the mess. Straczynski is quite the nasty little shit, isn’t he?