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Bring on the Christal Meth - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
cbertsch
cbertsch
Bring on the Christal Meth
The news that Fundamentalist minister Ted Haggard is alleged to have paid a male escort to have sex repeatedly over a period of years is one thing. Homophobes often turn out to be self-haters, ashamed of their own desire. But the fact that he is also reported to have been a steady methamphetamine user, who used in the course of sexual activity, elevates the story to a higher plane:
Jones claimed Haggard paid him to have sex nearly every month over three years. He said he advertised himself as an escort on the Internet and was contacted by a man who called himself Art, who snorted methamphetamine before their sexual encounters to heighten his experience.

Jones said he later saw the man on television identified as Haggard and that the two last had sex in August.

He said he has voice mail messages from Haggard, as well as an envelope he said Haggard used to mail him cash. He declined to make the voice mails available to the AP, but KUSA-TV reported what it said were excerpts late Thursday that referred to methamphetamine.

"Hi Mike, this is Art," one call began, according to the station. "Hey, I was just calling to see if we could get any more. Either $100 or $200 supply."

A second message, left a few hours later, began: "Hi Mike, this is Art, I am here in Denver and sorry that I missed you. But as I said, if you want to go ahead and get the stuff, then that would be great. And I'll get it sometime next week or the week after or whenever."
I always knew that the name of my friend Joel's former band, The Christal Methodists, was a stroke of genius -- even more so than the name of his current band, Elders of Zion -- buy it on iTunes! -- which I ingeniously proposed -- but this news retroactively raises that geniousity to a super power.

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flw From: flw Date: November 3rd, 2006 04:20 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Rage Projector

Ohhh... oh... ah... ha! Ha! Oh... ha ha ha yes... Sweet baby Jesus. Yes. Oh my God. Yes! Wow. Thank YOU, man. Wow. Hopefully, people will start to realize that when someone has such a serious ax to grind they are almost always covering something up. Imagine what Hell this guy's life must've been over the last five or ten years! Pastor/Manager of the world's first Church/Mall (or should I say Mall/Church), and he's married with five kids. Imagine, just try to imagine the HELL that that woman and those five kids live in. If he has that much RAGE to project onto the world at large, just imagine what he saves for the door mat!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 3rd, 2006 04:39 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Rage Projector

Yup.
From: ex_benlinus Date: November 3rd, 2006 06:21 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
flw From: flw Date: November 3rd, 2006 06:24 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Hilarity

Oh wow! I had just watched the Dawkins thing which is why "Pastor Ted" was so fresh in my mind. The best part is how Pastor ted doesn't have a thing to say in defense of his ludicrous worldview until Dawkins and crew are packed up and ready to leave and standing near a group of parishioners. All of a sudden, when there's a crowd, "Pastor Ted" has a lot to say, and peppers it with threats, etc... Hilarious.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 4th, 2006 04:17 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thanks for these links, belatedly. I looked at them right after you posted them, but got caught up in all manner of madness.
art_thirst From: art_thirst Date: November 3rd, 2006 07:11 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
The Christal Methodists is so right on! I love that one... :-))
art_thirst From: art_thirst Date: November 3rd, 2006 07:12 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I forgot, you can also say, give a man enough rope and he'll hang himself. :-)
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 4th, 2006 04:14 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
In pursuit of auto-erotic pleasure. . . .
From: bobo_amargo Date: November 3rd, 2006 10:32 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Christ Minds

Not to split hairs, but I disagree about where the importance of this news lies. Whereas it's true enough that homophobes are often unconsciously autohomophobic, Haggard practiced his ironic, vitriolic antigay crusading from the closet (assuming that the escort's allegations are true). I think it's important to distinguish, as people often fail to (I'm not including your remarks as necessarily so doing), between being repressed and being closeted. If you're repressed, the notion that you harbor same-sex desires will make its way into consciousness only by negation or projection. If you're closeted, you've accommodated the notion before the tribunal of yourself, but deny it -- together with any activities that it may motivate -- to (most) everyone else. Thus, if the allegations are true, Haggard is not repressed; he's closeted. He is therefore doubly responsible for the consequences of his disavowals. Given the large sway he holds or held over the minds of so many, his behavior makes him politically and ethically culpable in a way that many of his repressed reactionary brethren are not (by which lack of self-clarity I do not mean to imply that they bear no responsibility). To me, the drugs only add insult to the essential injury.

Haggard, meet Hopkins:

SOMETIMES a lantern moves along the night,
That interests our eyes. And who goes there?
I think; where from and bound, I wonder, where,
With, all down darkness wide, his wading light?

Men go by me whom either beauty bright
In mould or mind or what not else makes rare:
They rain against our much-thick and marsh air
Rich beams, till death or distance buys them quite.

Death or distance soon consumes them: wind
What most I may eye after, be in at the end
I cannot, and out of sight is out of mind.

Christ minds: Christ’s interest, what to avow or amend
There, éyes them, heart wánts, care haúnts, foot fóllows kínd,
Their ránsom, théir rescue, ánd first, fást, last friénd.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 4th, 2006 04:20 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Christ Minds

That's a really good point. But I think that self-loathing can still be a major factor in the behavior of those who are closeted, but not repressed. I see the distinction between them, not as absolute, but as a shifting and always provisional line on a continuum. Love the Hopkins, BTW.

(And, no, the scanner is not yet functioning. Or, rather, Photoshop isn't, which means I can't scan effectively.)
From: bobo_amargo Date: November 6th, 2006 04:41 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Widow of an Insight Lost

Glad you liked the Hopkins poem. It's a favorite of mine. I sometimes believe there's a mesmeric closet-effect enshrined in a particular strain of mostly male English-language poetry: Hopkins certainly, Browning, Milton, Stevens, Dickinson (?), etc. Then other times I think that that effect just is what counts as poetry (for me?). That's a much more complex, but still related conversation.

I stand corrected or adjusted where the relation between repression and closeting are concerned. I think you're right that a better way of describing the two concepts is as existing on a continuum. Perhaps that's generally true of related but in some sense distinguishable concepts. Though I'm hugely influenced by the later Wittgenstein and what are called the later New Wittgensteinians (Stanley Cavell, Cora Diamond, James Conant, Timothy Gould, etc.), I go back and forth on the availability of the family resemblance "theory" of concept manipulation. I find the process of defining concepts very useful. The idea of family resemblance and that of continuum-like relatedness serve to remind those of us in search of definitions, hence of clarity and distinctness, that there are all kinds of borderline cases and vagueness (the literature on which in recent philosophizing is immense), as well as meaning-establishing contexts, to be taken into account.

I also think you're right that one principal motivation behind the preservation of the closet on the part of the closeted is the tacit endorsement of (projected) homophobic beliefs, the endorsement of which more or less issues in self-loathing. However, I think there are a number of pragmatic motivations for preserving the closet that are not necessarily directly linked to autohomophobia. By the same token, it's generally not the case, to go back to my distinction for a second, that the man who's repressed loathes himself, at any rate not directly, for "suffering" same-sex desire (of course, he may consciously loathe himself for other reasons which on analysis seem strongly related to that disavowal).
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