Tuesday, July 08, 2008

THE THOMAS EDISON OF ROMANCE NOVELS (REVISED)

Gee, it's kinda sad to think that one of the most influential genre writers of the past four decades died last year with hardly a yawn from the media. She was right up there with Ian Fleming and Stephen King but you probably haven't heard of her because she wrote romance stories, which men don't read and which feminists and hippies disdain. The only people who liked her were romance readers, who bought her books in the tens of millions.

Kathleen Woodiwiss (real name: Kathleen Hogg) invented the steamy historical romance ...the bodice ripper. Before Woodiwiss there were thin, Harlequin-type romances and a smattering of nurse novels. After Woodiwiss there were thick historical novels packed with sex and purple prose.


What interests me most is the purple prose. Woodiwiss wanted to write about idealistic, passionate people and over-the-top sex scenes. She rightly figured that these would sound ridiculous in modern narrative English, so she put her stories in the past and cast about for a style that would fit. She obviously read books like "Gone With the Wind," but I'm guessing that she really hit paydirt when she discovered the swashbuckler style used by Raphael Sabitini. Sabitini was the Sergio Leone of his day. I picture her boldly updating and expanding on Sabitini, pushing the style farther and farther till she had something new on her hands.


Fleming was a great genre writer, but he didn't have to oppose the style of his time. Woodiwiss was forced to come up with a whole new style (or a drastically new take on an old style) and thrust it into the inhospitable world of the 1970s.



Writes Woodowiss:

"You bade me wait and cool your heels till you sailed this one last time, then you return and gift me with your wife! You present this common slut to take my place after you've played the round with my affections! Damn you, you crusty bull!" Brandon spun her around and caught her by the shoulders , almost lifting her clear of the dock. "Be warned, Louisa," he stated slowly. "She is my wife and carries my child. I wronged you, true, so wreak your vengeance upon my frame, but never--ever lay one hand upon her head!"

This was written in the early seventies. I wonder what the hippies thought of it.


Just so I don't disappoint, here's a Woodowiss sex scene...no, wait a minute, I'll save that for a separate "blue" post. In the story above, let it suffice to say that Captain Brandon Birmingham "probes the depths of Heather's full womanhood!"


BTW, I'm no expert on romance novels. I'm a guy and they're just not my thing, but I can appreciate the expertise that goes into them as well as the spirit. I admire romance readers because they won't be put off by ridicule or the hostility of the literary establishment.  They want romance and adventure in their lives and if they can't have it in real life, then they'll have it in fantasy.

These are the kind of women who, regardless of their sedate exteriors, are somewhere deep inside ready to risk everything, including life itself, for the man they love. They have guts and conviction.  In the Ice Age they were the women who would confront a sabertooth tiger with a tree branch in order to save their baby. They were the women who, with dagger drawn, would stay with a wounded husband through the night in a dark and menacing forest full of wolves. These women are the salt of the Earth. You can build a civilization around people like that.




52 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr.Eddie,The excerpts of Kathleen Woodiwiess you have included for the obituary you have written for her rightly states that the novelist must have been the favorite of females who thought that the 'stars were God's Daisy Chain'[P.G Wodehouse],her language and style is almost gothic and to think that she wrote in the times of Harold Robbins is reason to believe that mush sells and sells big. regards, Ishret. p.s do read my blog ishret's in the same blog site as your blog

kellie said...

That extract is great - 'crusty bull' seems a really unsettling phrase to me. How many have you read?

Mahala said...

I haven't read a really good and cheesy romance novel in ages. I might have to go pick one up :)

Love the pictures.

Clayton Graham said...

I know she was a great writer but, myself would not go as far as to call her the Thomas Edison of romance novels. Maybe the Alexander Graham Bell of romance novels. It is a great shame that the media does not cover all influential people deaths, but will cover every phone call surrounding the Hogans car crash

what a shame

trevor said...

Geez, Eddie!

Sometimes it seems to me that a person with as many passions as you could've been anything entertainment-related.

Kinda makes me wonder how you got to animation at all.... or did animation spark all of these other interests?

That was some great prose quoted.
( Admittedly, when you said 'purple prose' I immediately thought of Prince lyrics ).

Alls I know is I'll never discredit romance novels again. I just won't read them.

- trevor.

Snotty McSnotterson said...

What a great post--and cool photos!

Jorge Garrido said...

I love that style of writing. I love the idea of romance novels but I'm not sure which ones to get into, or what the good stuff is or what the good eras are.

Good thing Uncle Eddie is here to point the way!

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Rogellio: Sorry, I had to delete your letter because it was attached to a post that I didn't mean to put up, and which had to be taken down. I wrote down the advice. Thanks a million!

Adam T said...

Romance novel readers adventurous? I don't know about that, Eddie. They're like the female equivalent of male fantasy novel geeks. From what I've seen they are usually daydreamers and have totally unrealistic expectations when it comes to sex and romance.

Theory Corner readers, if you want to find high caliber women don't go prowling the romance section, go to a farmer's market. I found myself at one the other day and I was impressed. The women there are usually firmly grounded in reality, typically in good shape, AND are most likely good cooks. They are the true descendants of the gutsy Ice Age babes.

J. J. Hunsecker said...

DAMN THOSE HIPPIES!! They spent all their time fighting for civil right,s and for an end to the disastrous Vietnam War, when they should have been reading romance novels!! Where were their priorities?

R2K said...

: )

pappy d said...

Great stuff! "crusty bull" is such a vivid metaphor, I want to hold my nose.

This post touches on a big issue about what is/isn't art, or at least, a legal definition of art.

The govenment can never give a satisfactory definition of either "art" or "obscenity" but in visual art, the display of nudity in a creative work is permissible if you can link it to a contemporary notion of "classical tradition". This is nonsense. The Greeks didn't know about any arbitrary division between art & what they liked. Personally, there's nowhere art isn't allowed to touch me.

Strangely enough, if you have reproductions of Roman copies of Greek statues on your porch & you paint them flesh-colored (like the Greeks did) you can expect to be hounded out of Beverly Hills, even if you're not Arab.

If the author had written in modern prose, it would be too indecently obvious that it was porn. It doesn't matter that people never really talked like that couple. The book isn't a real antique, it's been beaten with chains & the wormholes are spattered on with a toothbrush. (She's bidden to cool his heels, only to be gifted with a wife??!)

The point is that the author's INTENT (for all intents & purposes) was to write like the Bronte sisters, exploring themes touched on by (banned writers) D.H. Lawrence or Flaubert.

Thanks again, Eddie & I'm looking forward to the further adventures of Heather & Cap'n Crusty!

"I wonder what the hippies thought of it."

Where's the charm in being a hippie if you still have to masturbate?

Nessa said...

"The Wolf and the Dove" is my favorite romance novel of all time. I just recently re-read it.

Your insights and pictures made me giggle, but then, I am a girl; D

Joan said...

I love your pictures...what a hoot. I read romance stories like Jane Eyre but think I'll pass on Ms. Woodiwiess. Soft porn is not my thing, but then I have a hunk of a man so I can write my own stories.

G. H-S said...

I agree with Adam t. Just thinking about love and doing something courageous doesn't actually make somebody courageous. It's like people who play Age of Empires or World of Warcraft and because of their epic skills in a computer game believe they are actually a strategic mastermind capable of leading a real army. In reality there is very little correlation.

Anthony said...

Very nice. I've run across a few romance novels unwittingly and you are right when you say that in a modern style, romance just is not Romance. The brash and blunt style of modern writing: We had sex. I told her I loved her. She believed me. Shes an idiot. I'm oversimplifying of course but romance and love cannot be translated into modern speech. We have become to literal. It is sad that a novelist such as Mrs. Kathleen was ignored by the public. I love her style. And while romance novels are not my cup of tea, being a guy and having to keep up appearances and all, I would consider reading her books simply to study her style.

trevor said...

Hey Eddie:

I sent you a message via YouTube.... did you get it?

I only ask because my 'Tube account is acting funky and half of my messages aren't getting sent.

- trevor.

PS: It would've been from 'Exit13Online'.

Jorge Garrido said...

"DAMN THOSE HIPPIES!! They spent all their time fighting for civil right,s and for an end to the disastrous Vietnam War, when they should have been reading romance novels!! Where were their priorities?"

MLK wasn't a hippy, and Nixon wasn't a hippy. The Hippies were a bunch of uppity, moralistic baby boomers who selfishly spent all their time consuming every drug known to man. They destyroed the environment, and gave us this recession by living beyong their means for YEARS, because all baby boomers are dirty hypocrites.

And by uppity, moralistic baby boomers, I mean ALL of them.

lastangelman said...

Nevermind the hippies. I don't think they were even aware of the genre, initially, to pay it any mind. And when they grew up and settled down, I'm almost certain a vast majority of those "hippy" women picked up one these paperbacks out of curiosity, got hooked, and gave Ms. Woodiwess (such an unusual name, you think?) a substantial income and great career satisfaction.

I think most of the disdain on the genre and its rabid fans were propagated by certain writers who got published now and again but did not sell in any great numbers, thus, "subsidized" their writing careers by taking jobs at academic posts, literary reviews for various publications, working as dishwashers, cab drivers, waitstaff, etcetera, thus pooh-poohed such "trash" while they toiled and suffered in labor of producing The Great American Novel. The late Mr. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. would have applauded Ms.Woodiweiss and remonstrated her detractors by remarking that perhaps the author did not produce a great world class novel, but she certainly was responsible for producing a great body of literature that was appreciated and widely read by a large and literate audience.

Jaime said...

I salute Kathleen Woodiwiess.

Nellz said...

I want to read one of her books, heard of but never got a chance...I like this blog!

Jenny Lerew said...

What is it with Eddie and "hippies"? 8-0

Alison said...

Uncle Eddie,

this is my first day on blogspot. I would love to know where you got that gorgous frock you are wearing!

I love your blog and look forward to reading through your archives!

Alison

jont said...

Man, you better get to trimming on that unibrow! ;-)

Regards,
Jon

Being Greener

I.D.R.C. said...

Jorge, I love you the way any man might love a pet turnip, but there is a lot of ignorance in you. You poor sap. Everything you think you know is wrong. OK, almost everything.
You can probably point to your own elbow.

scott said...

Hi Uncle Eddie, I thought you might like to see my first attempt at a photo story:

http://aperturequiet.blogspot.com/2008/07/adventureing-safari.html#comments

scott said...

Oops, sorry, that link to my photostory should look like this:

http://aperturequiet.blogspot.com/2008/07/adventureing-safari.html

Jorge Garrido said...

IDRK, if I wasn't completely hammered right now I'd own you. For now, though, I'll let those 8 Manhattans and 2 Molson Canadians do the talking...

J. J. Hunsecker said...

MLK wasn't a hippy, and Nixon wasn't a hippy. The Hippies were a bunch of uppity, moralistic baby boomers who selfishly spent all their time consuming every drug known to man. They destyroed the environment, and gave us this recession by living beyong their means for YEARS, because all baby boomers are dirty hypocrites.

And by uppity, moralistic baby boomers, I mean ALL of them.


Jorge,

"Civil Rights" refers to the rights protected by the U.S. Constitution. It's a broad definition, and doesn't solely refer to just the political campaigns and social activism of African Americans in the 50's & 60's. (Although plenty of hippies supported that movement, too.)

Even though one of Richard Nixon's 1968 campaign promises was to quickly end the Vietnam War, he instead escalated it -- including expanding it into neutral Cambodia. Also, the 1973 Paris Peace Accord that brought an end to the U.S involvement in Vietnam was tantamount to a surrender.

Notice I never said the hippies ended the war, but rather they fought for an end to the war, by staging protests, etc. (They weren't the only ones of course. They were joined by teachers, suburban housewives, union members, the clergy, returning vets, etc.) This pressure caused Lyndon B. Johnson decision not to run for re-election. So their organizing and protests did have results.

You claim that all the hippies were hypocrites, yet many of them stuck to their beliefs: Abbie Hoffman, Paul Krassner, and Timothy Leary, for example.

How have the hippies "destroyed the enviroment"? Do you mean they bought all the factories and poured pollutants into the air? Did they weaken the Clean Air Act? Where did you get such a preposterous idea?

The credit problems and housing crash of recent times has nothing to do with ex-hippies (it's really my generation and your own, Jorge, that have lived beyond their means on credit cards). If you need to blame people, then look no further than the neo-cons and their cronies running the U.S. at the moment.

It seems to give you great comfort to believe that drug-addled "peaceniks" with no respect for authority or country have destroyed western civilization, but that's just a grotesque caricature based on myth, and not reality.

dani sulu said...

Know nothing about the author your obituary is for. Nevertheless, i enjoyed reading your articles. Your pictures are simply good.

Music Lovers said...

nice

saswata-aruni sen said...

hi,
"you can build a civilization aound people like that'was a good bottomline; yes! But the doesn't fantasy have another name?

pappy d said...

You could build a good imaginary civilisation.

Wouldn't you classify "The Fountainhead" (1943)as a bodice-ripper? The cast of characters is the same & it does have a fantasy-rape.

I.D.R.C. said...

...if I wasn't completely hammered right now I'd own you.

Not on the best day of your life, nor the worst day of mine. Come see me anytime you want your tiny enclosed brain smacked around.

English 9 said...

Great post. I have a comment about the idea that romance readers are adventuruous. I read a book about a year ago called "Reading the Romance: Women, Patriarchy, and Popular Culture," by Janice A. Radway. This book is the result of years of Radway's study of romance readers. She posits that women who read romance novels consistently are actually engaged in an act of resistance against their actual (generally unromantic) lives. And the men in romance novels, while overly macho at times, display surprisingly feminine traits as well (they are often caring and emotional when they need to be).

Are these men and the romances they inspire fantastical? Yes. Does that mean that women who read romances have unrealistic expectations of sex and romance? No. Perhaps reading romances does allow women to reject, however passively, their disappointment in real life and in patriarchy.

Of course, what all readers of romances realize is that ultimately, patriarchy is supported in these novels. This is a contradiction to Radway's theory that even she admits is difficult to explain...

Hmmm...whow knew romance novels, which I read as an occasional trashy treat, could be so complicated?

Jorge Garrido said...

JJ, I was TALKING about baby boomers and neocons, who comprised the majority of hippies. Let me explain my thought on this, my original comment didn't do a good job. George W. Bush is like the king of the Baby Boomers. He represents all the values of the majority of Baby Boomers. That's how he won that ONE election and as far as I'm concerned they got the presidency they deserved.

I hate credit cards and my generation more than anyone, but we're not as bad as the Baby Boomers, and all of us are still young. You can't make a proper judgement of our collective value as a generation until most of us have grown up and we've done something. I do predict, though that we're the ones who'll have to clean up the mess left us. I honestly think another great depression is coming, and with that, my generation is going to have to scrimp and save and sacrifice and work our asses off and get fight and get killed in wars before this coming crisis is over, and I think it's going to change our values. FAST. Just you wait.

In the coming years, when boomers retire, the leaders and "elder statesmen," executives, politicians, and civic leaders of society will be mostly Generation X, those unfortunate souls who really DID have to work their asses off their entire lives to get everything they have. They grew up in overcrowded under budgeted schools, came into the workplace when the economy was in the shitter and have been ignored by the "establishment" all their lives (as a testament to the Baby Boomers. There's going to be a whole new philosophy at play here, a more pragmatist philosophy that will be executed in collaboration with my generation. From this I predict a cultural shift and hopefully a cultural renaissance. And to what ends: fixing up the mess baby boomers left us.

"It seems to give you great comfort to believe that drug-addled "peaceniks" with no respect for authority or country have destroyed western civilization, but that's just a grotesque caricature based on myth, and not reality."

Actually, I think the downfall of Western Civilization occurred because the Baby Boomers were coddled and spoiled by war-weary parents and brought up with materialistic and self-serving values, and when they grew up they extended their narcissism to everything they touched like some midas touch of mediocrity. This did lead to a lot of good things, like the downfall of racism and sexism, but it gave us mostly garbage, like political correctness, and shitty art, music, literature, and culture, and acid rain. The hippies were but one aspect of this boomer downfall. My original comment stemmed from my frustration at how often hippies get credited for the civil rights movement, even though that mostly the doing of the GI Generation and Lost Generation (the TRUE pioneers)

And yet the problems we face were the creation of these Baby boomers, the "greatest" most self-aggrandizing self-centred generation that ever lived.

Here are my favourite links on a subject that's very near and dear to my heart, and yes a lot of this stuff is tongue -in-cheek:

http://www.dieboomerdie.blogspot.com/

http://www.theworstgenerationever.blogspot.com/

"Trust me, I know what I'm talking about, I go to University."

BRB, off you kill myself.

Jorge Garrido said...

Also, guys, I hate using Eddie's blog to fight the way we always do, there's got to be a better venue where we can insult each other.

Jorge Garrido said...

Jesus Christ, I really hate to triple post, but I just came across the most amazing line from one of the links I sent above!

"It seems the world over the baby boomers are the same. Their parents handed them the world on a silver platter. The boomers consumed everything on that platter and then sold the platter to buy more stuff."

I lol'd for about ten minutes.

pappy d said...

The romance reader described by Radway sounds like a female analog to a "reader" of Playboy.

Few men have any expectation of living out the fantasy presented either. They are, by the same token, passively rejecting their disappointment in real life and in matriarchy. The depiction of women in Playboy is certainly no more demeaning than the romantic hero who can cry over his woman's problems but cares nothing for his own. They're both simply ideals of the opposite sex.

Eddie, I'd love to hear your opinion on the difference between visual & aural stimuli. Is there something inherently dirtier in a pictorial representation or is it just because men are wired for visual stimuli? Even the word, "graphic" has come to suggest something obscene.

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

English: I think I spot read the book you mentioned. What the author seemed to be saying was, "Romance novels suck, and the women who read them are pathetic." What an odd thing to say.

All genre fiction readers are pathetic in the limited sense that they probably have an adventure deficit in their lives. Why pick on the romance people? You could just as easily say that Jame Bond readers are pathetic.

I don't read romances myself, but I admire the spirit of the women who yearn for something more than quiet desperation. I regard adventure genres, including romance, as a kind of utopian fiction that pushes us to make the real world more exciting and stimulating.

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Pappy: Interesting question! Playboy -- if you take the whole magazine into account, and not only the pictures -- probably does serve the same purpose as romance novels. They're both utopian to the core.

I.D.R.C. said...

...I admire the spirit of the women who yearn for something more than quiet desperation.

Kate Winslet made that same argument about Madam Bovary in the film LITTLE CHILDREN (as well as about herself).

--------------------------------

I get it now, Jorge. It's everyone's fault who was born between about 1945 and 1965.

Why is it all their fault? Because they were all raised to be selfish, by a generation that was understandably tired, so conveniently nothing is their fault. That's what I'd call pinpoint accuracy. Many people need a scapegoat on which to stake their sense of superiority, and you have found yours.

If you are going to speak in public you should try thinking and not just emoting. Do not mistake a strong feeling for an act of cognition.

You have failed to ask the most important questions of all, which are, how did it come to pass, and who benefits?

Get interested in that, my lad, and see if it does not open up whole new, more productive avenues of inquiry for you.

If you really want a shining new future you are gonna need to know stuff like that.

cw allen said...

my wife is a big fan of the bodice rippers and now she has read your post i am subject to reading time after dark !!!!

Joel Bryan said...

The hippies WERE reading this stuff and most of them were going, "Like, wow, man, far out! I'm tripping pyschedelically through Kathleen's candy-colored madhouse... she's like opening the doors of perception and my Salvador Dali watches are melting through, baby, and it's groovy! Groovy! All you square Madison Avenue cats don't know where it's at but it's here and it's now and it's happenin' baby!"

But others were like, "I can count the ridges of my fingerprints, man! And they're getting bigger all the time!"

J. J. Hunsecker said...

JJ, I was TALKING about baby boomers and neocons, who comprised the majority of hippies.

We were specifically discussing the merits and faults of hippies, though. So when you stated, "They destroyed the environment" it sounded like you were talking only about the hippies. Sure, neocons are part of the baby boom generation, but people like George W. Bush were polar opposites of the hippies in terms of ideals. I don't blame the hippies for what other members of their generation have done.

...we're not as bad as the Baby Boomers, and all of us are still young. You can't make a proper judgement of our collective value as a generation until most of us have grown up and we've done something.

The hippies were young too, when they became social activists for political change. They didn't wait until they "grew up" to do something. Therefore, I don't think you can use age as an excuse for your generation. As you even admitted of the activism of the young hippies, "This did lead to a lot of good things, like the downfall of racism and sexism..."

Generation X...grew up in overcrowded under budgeted schools, came into the workplace when the economy was in the shitter and have been ignored by the "establishment" all their lives...

How are the boomers, much less the hippies, responsible for that? The politicians in place during Gen X's time were older than the boomer generation. When Gen Xers entered the workplace it was under the conditions of Reaganomics. (Which the elder George H. W. Bush called "voodoo economics".) During that era there were record high deficits, a stock market crash in '87, and high unemployment. There was also a recession during the end of the first term of George H. W. Bush, who was a member of the G.I. generation.

It was a boomer, Bill Clinton, who reduced the deficit until there was a projected surplus. (Of course another boomer president ruined that.)

...the Baby Boomers were coddled and spoiled by war-weary parents and brought up with materialistic and self-serving values... they extended their narcissism to everything they touched like some midas touch of mediocrity... it gave us mostly garbage, like political correctness, and shitty art, music, literature, and culture, and acid rain.

First of all, the hippies -- spoiled or not -- rejected the materialistic values of their parents, for the most part, and dropped out of mainstream American society.

The mediocrity that you blame on the boomers happened when the older generations were in control. Boomers weren't responsible for the decline of the auto industry, for example. They didn't create the Edsel, the Corvair or the Pinto. You'd have to blame that on older people like Henry Ford II and Edward Cole.

The Clash, The Police, David Bowie, U2, The Smiths, Joy Division, Van Halen, AC/DC, Talking Heads, etc. were some of the musical acts of the boomers. You may not care for those bands, but they weren't mediocre.

"Shitty art"? Your idol John K is a member of the baby boom. Would you consider his art to be shitty or mediocre?

Boomers, like Leonard Maltin, also researched and wrote most of the animation history books that most of us study today, so you should thank that generation if you care at all about classic American animated cartoons. The generations before them thought these cartoons were trifling junk, and the few books written by older generations were filled with inaccuracies.

BRB, off you kill myself.

What does that mean?

J.A.Y said...

hah! its rare to see a guy holding a bodice-ripping novel. A novelty you could say. and kudos on the hair! you remind me of someone....i think the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. at least i think he's calle the mad hatter...hmmmm....

Ladyheart said...

hehe... U looks so funny! I think u can become the next Mr Bean! ^^

Pete said...

Ha Ha. Nice pictures. Great!

Jorge Garrido said...

I'm done arguing, (the old cliche of the Internet being like the Special Olympics still holds true, even in these crazy Web 2.0 days) but I will say this:

When you're trying to convince someone that a generation was responsbile for good music, art and culture, don't list as your "great" examples a bunch of rock & roll bands, a "low" art, the records of children. Especially when previous generations gave us Mozart, Wagner, and Brahms (not to mention other "modern" geniuses like Glenn Miller, Harry James, Hank Williams, Enrico Caruso, and Ella Fitzgerald). But I realize that such a comparison is tantamount to comparing Seth MacFarlane to Rod Scribner. Oh, and, what, were The Beatles too obvious of a choice in this "amazing" list of aggrandized musical acts? Why not throw in Nirvana and Led Zeppelin while you're at it.

When my generation gets to be as old as the boomers Fallout Boy and other mediocre false emo bands will be on the lists of "greatest bands of all time" just like those bands you listed are today, AND FOR THE SAME REASON. I've always said nostalgia is a dangerous thing.

This has stopped being fun, and I don't like taking up space on Eddie's domain for this childishness. If you two want to argue with me in the future, email me at blindside_invert@hotmail.com or add me to MSN so I can ignore you on a more personal level.

I.D.R.C. said...

I don't want to argue with you, I want you to wise up or shut up. You want me to go some other place in order to inflict you upon myself further? I'm not a masochist and I am not making you my project.

J. J. Hunsecker said...

Oh, and, what, were The Beatles too obvious of a choice in this "amazing" list of aggrandized musical acts? Why not throw in Nirvana and Led Zeppelin while you're at it.

The members of The Beatles were born before 1946, therefore they are technically not members of the Baby Boom. (The same goes for Led Zeppelin.) I thought you were talking about the music the Boomers created, not the music that they listened to.

When you're trying to convince someone that a generation was responsbile for good music, art and culture, don't list as your "great" examples a bunch of rock & roll bands, a "low" art, the records of children. Especially when previous generations gave us Mozart, Wagner, and Brahms (not to mention other "modern" geniuses like Glenn Miller, Harry James, Hank Williams, Enrico Caruso, and Ella Fitzgerald).

Except for Classical, all the other musical genres you listed were considered "low" art in their day -- such as Country and Jazz. (Glenn Miller and Harry James are not considered geniuses, either in their day or nowadays. Jazz musicians like Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong are.) Jazz was also considered the "music of children" when it first appeared in the 20's and 30's, as it appealed mostly to teens and young adults.

When my generation gets to be as old as the boomers Fallout Boy and other mediocre false emo bands will be on the lists of "greatest bands of all time" just like those bands you listed are today, AND FOR THE SAME REASON. I've always said nostalgia is a dangerous thing.

The same thing applies to the jazz and country artists you mentioned earlier. Their music was considered junk by the cultural gatekeepers of their era. It was only years later, when the young adults who liked that music became the establishment themselves, that the music was reevaluated as great art. What is your point, then? All art is reevaluated later, and if it stands the test of time, it then is considered "classic". If the "emo" bands you hate today also survive, and are appreciated by later generations, then they will also deserve the title of "classic".

This has stopped being fun, and I don't like taking up space on Eddie's domain for this childishness. If you two want to argue with me in the future, email me at blindside_invert@hotmail.com or add me to MSN so I can ignore you on a more personal level.

So now you're playing coy and want to be pursued. No thanks.

P.S. It was never fun for me, either. It's just that your disparagement of an entire generation was ill-founded and based on falsehoods. (And what you wrote about that generation could be said about any generation.)

Anonymous said...

Don’t believe one optimistic word from any public figure about the economy or humanity in general. They are all part of the problem. Its like a game of Monopoly. In America, the richest 1% now hold 1/2 OF ALL UNITED STATES WEALTH. Unlike ‘lesser’ estimates, this includes all stocks, bonds, cash, and material assets held by America’s richest 1%. Even that filthy pig Oprah acknowledged that it was at about 50% in 2006. Naturally, she put her own ‘humanitarian’ spin on it. Calling attention to her own ‘good will’. WHAT A DISGUSTING HYPOCRITE SLOB. THE RICHEST 1% HAVE LITERALLY MADE WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. Don’t fall for any of their ‘humanitarian’ CRAP. ITS A SHAM. THESE PEOPLE ARE CAUSING THE SAME PROBLEMS THEY PRETEND TO CARE ABOUT. Ask any professor of economics. Money does not grow on trees. The government can’t just print up more on a whim. At any given time, there is a relative limit to the wealth within ANY economy of ANY size. So when too much wealth accumulates at the top, the middle class slip further into debt and the lower class further into poverty. A similar rule applies worldwide. The world’s richest 1% now own over 40% of ALL WORLD WEALTH. This is EVEN AFTER you account for all of this ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS from celebrities and executives. ITS A SHAM. As they get richer and richer, less wealth is left circulating beneath them. This is the single greatest underlying cause for the current US recession. The middle class can no longer afford to sustain their share of the economy. Their wealth has been gradually transfered to the richest 1%. One way or another, we suffer because of their incredible greed. We are talking about TRILLIONS of dollars which have been transfered FROM US TO THEM. All over a period of about 27 years. Thats Reaganomics for you. The wealth does not ‘trickle down’ as we were told it would. It just accumulates at the top. Shrinking the middle class and expanding the lower class. Causing a domino effect of socio-economic problems. But the rich will never stop. They just keep getting richer. Leaving even less of the pie for the other 99% of us to share. At the same time, they throw back a few tax deductible crumbs and call themselves ‘humanitarians’. Cashing in on the PR and getting even richer the following year. IT CAN’T WORK THIS WAY. Their bogus efforts to make the world a better place can not possibly succeed. Any 'humanitarian' progress made in one area will be lost in another. EVERY SINGLE TIME. IT ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK THIS WAY. This is going to end just like a game of Monopoly. The current US recession will drag on for years and lead into the worst US depression of all time. The richest 1% will live like royalty while the rest of us fight over jobs, food, and gasoline. So don’t fall for any of this PR CRAP from Hollywood, Pro Sports, and Wall Street PIGS. ITS A SHAM. Remember: They are filthy rich EVEN AFTER their tax deductible contributions. Greedy pigs. Now, we are headed for the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time. Crime, poverty, and suicide will skyrocket. SEND A “THANK YOU” NOTE TO YOUR FAVORITE MILLIONAIRE. ITS THEIR FAULT. I’m not discounting other factors like China, sub-prime, or gas prices. But all of those factors combined still pale in comparison to that HUGE transfer of wealth to the rich. Anyway, those other factors are all related and further aggrivated because of GREED. If it weren’t for the OBSCENE distribution of wealth within our country, there never would have been such a market for sub-prime to begin with. Which by the way, was another trick whipped up by greedy bankers and executives. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. The credit industry has been ENDORSED by people like Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGenerous, Dr Phil, and many other celebrities. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. Now, there are commercial ties between nearly every industry and every public figure. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. So don’t fall for their ‘good will’ BS. ITS A LIE. If you fall for it, then you’re a fool. If you see any real difference between the moral character of a celebrity, politician, attorney, or executive, then you’re a fool. No offense fellow citizens. But we have been mislead by nearly every public figure. We still are. Even now, they claim to be 'hurting' right along with the rest of us. As if gas prices actually effect the lifestyle of a millionaire. ITS A LIE. IN 2007, THE RICHEST 1% INCREASED THEIR AVERAGE BOTTOM LINE WEALTH AGAIN. On average, they are now worth over $4,000,000 each. Thats an all time high. As a group, they are now worth well over $17,000,000,000,000. THATS WELL OVER SEVENTEEN TRILLION DOLLARS. Another all time high. Which by the way, is much more than the entire middle and lower classes combined. Also more than enough to pay off the national deficit, fund the Iraq war for twenty years, and bail out the US housing market. Still think that our biggest problem is China? Think again. Its the 1% club. That means every big name celebrity, athlete, executive, entrepreneur, developer, banker, and lottery winner. Along with many attorneys, doctors, politicians, and bankers. If they are rich, then they are part of the problem. Their incredible wealth was not 'created', 'generated', grown in their back yard, or printed up on their command. It was transfered FROM US TO THEM. Directly and indirectly. Its become near impossible to spend a dollar without making some greedy pig even richer. Don't be fooled by the occasional loss of a millionaire's fortune. Overall, they just keep getting richer. They absolutely will not stop. Still, they have the nerve to pretend as if they care about ordinary people. ITS A LIE. NOTHING BUT CALCULATED PR CRAP. WAKE UP PEOPLE. THEIR GOAL IS TO WIN THE GAME. The 1% club will always say or do whatever it takes to get as rich as possible. Without the slightest regard for anything or anyone but themselves. Reaganomics. Their idea. Loans from China. Their idea. NAFTA. Their idea. Outsourcing. Their idea. Sub-prime. Their idea. High energy prices. Their idea. Oil 'futures'. Their idea. Obscene health care charges. Their idea. The commercial lobbyist. Their idea. The multi-million dollar lawsuit. Their idea. The multi-million dollar endorsement deal. Their idea. $200 cell phone bills. Their idea. $200 basketball shoes. Their idea. $30 late fees. Their idea. $30 NSF fees. Their idea. $20 DVDs. Their idea. Subliminal advertising. Their idea. Brainwash plots on TV. Their idea. Vioxx, and Celebrex. Their idea. Excessive medical testing. Their idea. The MASSIVE campaign to turn every American into a brainwashed, credit card, pharmaceutical, medical testing, love-sick, celebrity junkie. Their idea. All of the above shrink the middle class, concentrate the world’s wealth and resources, create a dominoe effect of socio-economic problems, and wreak havok on society. All of which have been CREATED AND ENDORSED by celebrities, athletes, executives, entrepreneurs, attorneys, and politicians. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. So don’t fall for any of their ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS. ITS A SHAM. NOTHING BUT TAX DEDUCTIBLE PR CRAP. In many cases, the 'charitable' contribution is almost entirely offset. Not to mention the opportunity to plug their name, image, product, and 'good will' all at once. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. These filthy pigs even have the nerve to throw a fit and spin up a misleading defense with regard to 'federal tax revenue'. ITS A SHAM. THEY SCREWED UP THE EQUATION TO BEGIN WITH. If the middle and lower classes had a greater share of the pie, they could easily cover a greater share of the federal tax revenue. They are held down in many ways because of greed. Wages remain stagnant for millions because the executives, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, and entrepreneurs, are paid millions. They over-sell, over-charge, under-pay, outsource, cut jobs, and benefits to increase their bottom line. As their profits rise, so do the stock values. Which are owned primarily by the richest 5%. As more United States wealth rises to the top, the middle and lower classes inevitably suffer. This reduces the potential tax reveue drawn from those brackets. At the same time, it wreaks havok on middle and lower class communities and increases the need for financial aid. Not to mention the spike in crime because of it. There is a dominoe effect to consider. IT CAN'T WORK THIS WAY. But our leaders refuse to acknowledge this. Instead they come up with one trick after another to milk the system and screw the majority. These decisions are heavily influensed by the 1% club. Every year, billions of federal tax dollars are diverted behind the scenes back to the rich and their respective industries. Loans from China have been necessary to compensate in part, for the red ink and multi-trillion dollar transfer of wealth to the rich. At the same time, the feds have been pushing more financial burden onto the states who push them lower onto the cities. Again, the hardship is felt more by the majority and less by the 1% club. The rich prefer to live in exclusive areas or upper class communities. They get the best of everything. Reliable city services, new schools, freshly paved roads, upscale parks, ect. The middle and lower class communities get little or nothing without a local tax increase. Which, they usually can't afford. So the red ink flows followed by service cuts and lay-offs. All because of the OBSCENE distribution of bottom line wealth in this country. So when people forgive the rich for their incredible greed and then praise them for paying a greater share of the FEDERAL income taxes, its like nails on a chalk board. I can not accept any theory that our economy would suffer in any way with a more reasonable distribution of wealth. Afterall, it was more reasonable 30 years ago. Before Reaganomics came along. Before GREED became such an epidemic. Before we had an army of over-paid executives, bankers, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, doctors, investors, entrepreneurs, developers, and sold-out politicians to kiss their asses. As a nation, we were in much better shape. Strong middle class, free and clear assets, lower crime rate, more widespread prosperity, stable job market, lower deficit, ect. Our economy as a whole was much more stable and prosperous for the majority. WITHOUT LOANS FROM CHINA. Now, we have a more obscene distribution of bottom line wealth than ever before. We have a sold-out government, crumbling infrastructure, energy crisis, home forclosure epidemic, credit crunch, weak US dollar, 13 figure national deficit, and 12 figure annual shortfall. The cost of living is higher than ever before. Most people can't even afford basic health care. ALL BECAUSE OF GREED. I really don't blame the 2nd -5th percentiles in general. No economy could ever function without some reasonable scale of personal wealth and income. But it can't be allowed to run wild like a mad dog. ALBERT EINSTEIN TRIED TO MAKE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND. UNBRIDLED CAPITALISM ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK. TOP HEAVY ECONOMIES ALWAYS COLLAPSE. Bottom line: The richest 1% will soon tank the largest economy in the world. It will be like nothing we’ve ever seen before. The American dream will be shattered. and thats just the beginning. Greed will eventually tank every major economy in the world. Causing millions to suffer and die. Oprah, Angelina, Brad, Bono, and Bill are not part of the solution. They are part of the problem. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE HUMANITARIAN. EXTREME WEALTH MAKES WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. WITHOUT WORLD PROSPERITY, THERE WILL NEVER BE WORLD PEACE OR ANYTHING EVEN CLOSE. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL. Of course, the rich will throw a fit and call me a madman.. Of course, they will jump to small minded conclusions about 'jealousy', 'envy', or 'socialism'. Of course, their ignorant fans will do the same. You have to expect that. But I speak the truth. If you don’t believe me, then copy this entry and run it by any professor of economics or socio-economics. Then tell a friend. Call the local radio station. Re-post this entry or put it in your own words. Be one of the first to predict the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time and explain its cause. WE ARE IN BIG TROUBLE.


So what can we do about it? Well, not much. Unfortunately, we are stuck on a runaway train. The problem has gone unchecked for too many years. The US/global depression is comming thanks to the 1% club. It would take a massive effort by the vast majority to prevent it. Along with a voluntary sacrifice by the rich. THATS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. But if you believe in miracles, then spend your money as wisely as possible. Especially in middle and lower class communities. Check the Fortune 500 list and limit your support of high profit/low labor industries (Hollywood, pro sports, energy, credit, pharmaceutical, cable, satelite, internet advertising, cell phone, high fashion, jewelry, ect.). Cancel all but one credit card for emergencies only. If you need a cell phone, then do your homework and find the best deal on a local pre-pay. If you want home internet access, then use the least expensive provider, and share accounts whenever possible. If you need to search, then use the less popular search engines. They usually produce the same results anyway. Don't click on any internet ad. If you need the product or service, then look up the phone number or address and contact that business directly. Don't pay to see any blockbuster movie. Instead, wait a few months and rent the DVD from a local store or buy it USED. If you want to see a big name game or event, then watch it in a local bar, club, or at home on network TV. Don't buy any high end official merchendise and don't support the high end sponsors. If its endorsed by a big name celebrity, then don't buy it. If you can afford a new car, then make an exception for GM, Ford, and Dodge. If they don't increase their market share soon, then a lot more people are going to get screwed out of their pensions and/or benefits. Of course, you must know by now to avoid those big trucks and SUVs unless you truly need one for its intended purpose. Don't be ashamed to buy a foreign car if you prefer it. Afterall, those with the most fuel efficient vehicles consume a lot less foreign oil. Which accounts for a pretty big chunk of our trade deficit. Anyway, the global economy is worth supporting to some extent. Its the obscene profit margins, trade deficits, and BS from OPEC that get us into trouble. Otherwise, the global economy would be a good thing for everyone. Just keep in mind that the big 3 are struggling and they do produce a few smaller reliable cars. Don't frequent any high end department store or any business in a newly developed upper class community. By doing so, you make developers richer and draw support away from industrial areas and away from the middle class communities. Instead, support the local retailer and the less popular shopping centers. Especially in lower or middle class communities. If you can afford to buy a home, then do so. But go smaller and less expensive. Don't get yourself in too deep and don't buy into the newly developed condos or gated communities. Instead, find a modest home in a building or neighborhood at least 20 years old. If you live in one of the poorer states, then try to support its economy first and foremost. Big business is fine on occasion depending on the profit margins and profit sharing. Do your homework. If you want to support any legitimate charity, then do so directly. Never support any celebrity foundation. They spend most of their funding on PR campaigns, travel, and high end accomodations for themselves. Instead, go to Charitywatch.org and look up a top rated charity to support your favorite cause. In general support the little guy as much as possible and the big guy as little as possible. Do your part to reverse the transfer of wealth away from the rich and back to the middle and lower classes. Unfortunately, there is no perfect answer. Jobs will be lost either way. Innocent children will starve and die either way. But we need to support the largest group of workers with the most reasonable profit margins. We also need to support LEGITIMATE charities (Check that list at Charitywatch.org). This is our only chance to limit the severity and/or duration of the comming US/global depression. In the meantime, don't listen to Bernenke, Paulson, Bartiromo, Orman, Dobbs, Kramer, OReiley, or any other public figure with regard to the economy. They are all plenty smart but I swear to you that they will lie right through their rotten teeth. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. Like I said, you are welcome to run this by any professor of economics or socio-economics. If thats not good enough, then look up what Einstein had to say about greed, extreme wealth, and its horrible concequences. I speak the truth. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.