Archives for posts with tag: Wall Street

Writing this film has been so cathartic.  Not least because I get to exorcise a life time of demons.  I also act out crimes of atrocious ferocity without ever once having to lift a gun or a knife.

What keeps me from murdering those who give me pains?

Well, for a start, I am not (much to your irritation) a psychopath.  A sociopath maybe…but even that is doubtful.

After all these years of not committing vicious crimes against humanity.

I’m not about to start now.

What stops me from commiting the vilest crimes?   The very worst of my vengeful nature?

Well, my dears, I am an artist.

When I made Clancy’s Kitchen (essentially a film about my wanting to kill and dismember a homophobe) when the prosthesis arrived…boxes of beautifully made hands, feet and other body parts…I thought to myself…good god…you really are one sick mother fucker.

Looking at the descriptions for both psychopath and sociopath…they are strikingly similar.  But what is more striking is that they describe perfectly…most Americans.

In particular those who work on Wall Street.

A blatant disregard for the well-being of others.  

Here are some other Wall Street traits…these could apply to most Hollywood talent managers…in fact…any American ‘agent’…talent, literary, real estate…

These sociopathic character defects are perceived as virtue and coping mechanisms on Wall Street or in Hollywood.

Here are some of my favorites:

  • Glibness and Superficial Charm
  • Manipulative and Conning
    They never recognize the rights of others and see their self-serving behaviors as permissible. They appear to be charming, yet are covertly hostile and domineering, seeing their victim as merely an instrument to be used. They may dominate and humiliate their victims.
  • Grandiose Sense of Self
    Feels entitled to certain things as “their right.”
  • Pathological Lying
    Has no problem lying coolly and easily and it is almost impossible for them to be truthful on a consistent basis. Can create, and get caught up in, a complex belief about their own powers and abilities. Extremely convincing and even able to pass lie detector tests.
  • Lack of Remorse, Shame or Guilt
    A deep-seated rage, which is split off and repressed, is at their core. Does not see others around them as people, but only as targets and opportunities. Instead of friends, they have victims and accomplices who end up as victims. The end always justifies the means and they let nothing stand in their way.
  • Need for Stimulation
    Living on the edge. Verbal outbursts and physical punishments are normal. Promiscuity and gambling are common.
  • Callousness/Lack of Empathy
    Unable to empathize with the pain of their victims, having only contempt for others’ feelings of distress and readily taking advantage of them.
  • Poor Behavioral Controls/Impulsive Nature
    Rage and abuse, alternating with small expressions of love and approval produce an addictive cycle for abuser and abused, as well as creating hopelessness in the victim. Believe they are all-powerful, all-knowing, entitled to every wish, no sense of personal boundaries, no concern for their impact on others.
  • Irresponsibility/Unreliability
    Not concerned about wrecking others’ lives and dreams. Oblivious or indifferent to the devastation they cause. Does not accept blame themselves, but blames others, even for acts they obviously committed.
  • Promiscuous Sexual Behavior/Infidelity
    Promiscuity, child sexual abuse, rape and sexual acting out of all sorts.
  • Lack of Realistic Life Plan/Parasitic Lifestyle
    Tends to move around a lot or makes all-encompassing promises for the future, poor work ethic but exploits others effectively.
  • Criminal or Entrepreneurial Versatility
    Changes their image as needed to avoid prosecution. Changes life story readily.
With Wall Street running things here…Goldman Sachs et al…and trying to run things everywhere else…the disregard and arrogance they have for those of us who have very little may be their undoing.
The 99%ers are storming the Palace of Versailles!  As I predicted here in this blog many months ago:
Here come the poor!  Here come the disenfranchised.  Like Zombies.
Here comes the change we can believe in.
They ain’t going anywhere.  Get used to it.
The rich in Britain were very canny, they gave away a little to keep a lot.   The establishment flourishes.  The Royal Family keeps its many palaces.
As crowns fell all over Europe, the British picked up fabulous jewels at bargain prices, abandoning their cousins to the guillotine, the Bolsheviks and worst of all…Scandinavian mediocrity.
Americans are too greedy to give a little to keep a lot.  They want it all.  The winner takes it all.
Just remember this Jamie Dimon/Lloyd Blankfein/Rupert Murdoch:  The French Revolution.
The French Royal Family had become so complacent, so arrogant…so rich…when they heard that the angry/hungry people were coming armed with pitchforks…they couldn’t close the gates to the magnificent Palace…the iron gates had rusted open.
The peasants just walked in…

A charming, quiet week in Malibu with friends.  The weather has been spectacular since I arrived home from NYC.

Art Platform events all weekend.  Abbott Kinney on Saturday afternoon.  Sunday lunch with Fielder and Danny.  Grom ice cream at the Lumber Yard.

On our way downtown we saw the remnants of the LA Wall Street demonstration.

I bought a small work at the new LA Art Fair by a new artist called Ariel Evestingcol called Labor Plot.  A police officer is beating a man with a baton.  I bought it mostly to celebrate the Wall Street Demonstrations.  Which, I failed to mention in an earlier blog I had seen whilst I was in NYC.

Apparently my more elegant gay friends are not interested in supporting our brave comrades down town.  Perhaps if Taylor Lautner was manning the barricades with his shirt off they would join in?

My friend Zelko tells me that there are lesbians on the front line but no gay men.  One young gay man approached Zelko and asked him what he was doing there.  When Zelko told him that he was supporting the cause the 24-year-old countered that he finds the protesters ‘annoying’ for being loud, naked and stinky.  Zelko told him that those were the exact words that came to mind whenever he thought of a gay pride parade.   He asked him if he’d feel differently if the cause was gay rights.  No answer.

As I have been suggesting for some time, the laissez faire…let them eat cake attitude of both the government and the banks will breed dissatisfaction and insurrection.

Let the breaking of windows begin.

What is just (at the moment) an inarticulate expression of the frustrated, hopeless and disenfranchised will surely shape up into something more potent.  The more the police arrest, the unprovoked pepper spraying of innocent young women, the more like Syria it becomes.

I suspect that the government will tread very carefully around further arresting potential martyrs.

I salute the 700!  Being arrested in the USA has severe consequences.

The problem with this demonstration is the lack of articulated protest.  Nobody really knows how to change the system.  Nobody really knows what changes need to be made.  Nobody seems to use language familiar to European socialists.

Socialism may very well be terrifying to the very people who need to use this language the most.

A fair and equitable world.  The people no longer enslaved with crippling debt.  The rich paying a fair tax.  Human rights such as health care and a good education.  Illegal wars must stop.

These are not outrageous demands.

Those protesting in New York have been circulating a list of grievances, most of which are aimed at corporations that they say are too powerful and often unethical. Among the complaints: bank executives received “exorbitant” bonuses not long after receiving taxpayer bailouts and companies have “poisoned the food supply through negligence” and “continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate better pay and safer working conditions.”

The demonstrators seem frightened at the prospect of issuing demands, formulating their own utopian dream and, as I have already said, using the language and heroes of socialist Europe.

Until these young people begin to make emphatic demands these sort of sophomoric sit-ins will not gain any traction.

The ‘haves and the have more’ will look down their noses at these youngsters.  They will exact their revenge unless these fledgling heroes whip up support all over the country, from Albuquerque to Alaska…harness the raw power of the unemployed and demand that their concerns are as relevant as those of the corporations and the banks.

We will see in good time just how effective these youngsters can be at making change, the very same change the wimp Obama promised us all when he spoke to the people…before he won the election.

How cynical his false promises were.

Last night I dreamt of you know who.  As vivid a dream I could not have imagined.

On a windswept street in Europe we talked about reconciliation.  He was wearing the protective armor of an american football player.

He said, “People can’t imagine what I saw in you.”  And I reply, “Well, you knew what you were getting yourself into.  Everything was out there.  Every defect revealed, written about…mocked.”

I have no idea what he saw in me.  I can only imagine that Anthony Patch from Fitzgerald’s Beautiful and the Damned, his great hero…may provide some answers.

In the dream he kissed a man in front of me and I remember thinking that I wanted him to be happy and free.  I remember thinking to myself…why am I fighting this stranger?   What if he triumphs?  Does it really matter?

He really is a better man than I could ever be.  A better liar, better at sex, better intellect, better looking.

I said to him in the dream, “I am sorry that I wasn’t what you thought I could be.  I wasn’t the rich, handsome, debonaire, literary hero you wanted so badly to rescue you from your dull wife.”

“I am so sorry I was too old and poor and fractured.  I am sorry that there was no huge house, no silk slippers, no deliverance from a mundane ‘virtual’ office job.  That is his role…not mine.  He will come and find you, he will take you home to his mansion, he will let you swim in his pool…he will love you like I could not love you.”

The reconciliation I dream about is as hopeless as the dream some of us have of a better USA.

…which was how somebody found the blog yesterday.  Nothing worse than a tranny with buyers remorse.

Golden Angel Head

Resting my lap top on my ball.  Did I learn nothing?  I can feel it burn my thighs.

NYC.  Why so secretive?  Secret love?  Maybe.   Secret litigation.  YES!  Not so secret.  Secret parties after the Armory?  Well…of course.  Secret drama at my favourite places?  Definitely.  Secret film stars at NYU.  Secret fuck buddies who don’t want to wear condoms.

Secrets…and I am on the verge of giving birth to this huge secret shit.

A love affair?  maybe.

Walking the dog as usual.  Selling art.  Not selling art.  Fuck!

Met up with a gay friend who is just so pissed at Obama and the HRC and can’t imagine how things are going to change for him and his lover.  How are things going to change?

It’s only a matter of time.

Don’t give up.  Read this:

Speech Michael Moore delivered at Wisconsin Capitol in Madison, March 5, 2011

America is not broke.

Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you’ll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash. It’s just that it’s not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich.

Today just 400 Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined.

Let me say that again. 400 obscenely rich people, most of whom benefited in some way from the multi-trillion dollar taxpayer “bailout” of 2008, now have more loot, stock and property than the assets of 155 million Americans combined. If you can’t bring yourself to call that a financial coup d’état, then you are simply not being honest about what you know in your heart to be true.

And I can see why. For us to admit that we have let a small group of men abscond with and hoard the bulk of the wealth that runs our economy, would mean that we’d have to accept the humiliating acknowledgment that we have indeed surrendered our precious Democracy to the moneyed elite. Wall Street, the banks and the Fortune 500 now run this Republic — and, until this past month, the rest of us have felt completely helpless, unable to find a way to do anything about it.

I have nothing more than a high school degree. But back when I was in school, every student had to take one semester of economics in order to graduate. And here’s what I learned: Money doesn’t grow on trees. It grows when we make things. It grows when we have good jobs with good wages that we use to buy the things we need and thus create more jobs. It grows when we provide an outstanding educational system that then grows a new generation of inventers, entrepreneurs, artists, scientists and thinkers who come up with the next great idea for the planet. And that new idea creates new jobs and that creates revenue for the state. But if those who have the most money don’t pay their fair share of taxes, the state can’t function. The schools can’t produce the best and the brightest who will go on to create those jobs. If the wealthy get to keep most of their money, we have seen what they will do with it: recklessly gamble it on crazy Wall Street schemes and crash our economy. The crash they created cost us millions of jobs.  That too caused a reduction in revenue. And the population ended up suffering because they reduced their taxes, reduced our jobs and took wealth out of the system, removing it from circulation.

The nation is not broke, my friends. Wisconsin is not broke. It’s part of the Big Lie. It’s one of the three biggest lies of the decade: America/Wisconsin is broke, Iraq has WMD, the Packers can’t win the Super Bowl without Brett Favre.

The truth is, there’s lots of money to go around. LOTS. It’s just that those in charge have diverted that wealth into a deep well that sits on their well-guarded estates. They know they have committed crimes to make this happen and they know that someday you may want to see some of that money that used to be yours. So they have bought and paid for hundreds of politicians across the country to do their bidding for them. But just in case that doesn’t work, they’ve got their gated communities, and the luxury jet is always fully fueled, the engines running, waiting for that day they hope never comes. To help prevent that day when the people demand their country back, the wealthy have done two very smart things:

1. They control the message. By owning most of the media they have expertly convinced many Americans of few means to buy their version of the American Dream and to vote for their politicians. Their version of the Dream says that you, too, might be rich some day – this is America, where anything can happen if you just apply yourself! They have conveniently provided you with believable examples to show you how a poor boy can become a rich man, how the child of a single mother in Hawaii can become president, how a guy with a high school education can become a successful filmmaker. They will play these stories for you over and over again all day long so that the last thing you will want to do is upset the apple cart — because you — yes, you, too! — might be rich/president/an Oscar-winner some day! The message is clear: keep your head down, your nose to the grindstone, don’t rock the boat and be sure to vote for the party that protects the rich man that you might be some day.

2. They have created a poison pill that they know you will never want to take. It is their version of mutually assured destruction. And when they threatened to release this weapon of mass economic annihilation in September of 2008, we blinked. As the economy and the stock market went into a tailspin, and the banks were caught conducting a worldwide Ponzi scheme, Wall Street issued this threat: Either hand over trillions of dollars from the American taxpayers or we will crash this economy straight into the ground. Fork it over or it’s Goodbye savings accounts. Goodbye pensions. Goodbye United States Treasury. Goodbye jobs and homes and future. It was friggin’ awesome and it scared the shit out of everyone. “Here! Take our money! We don’t care. We’ll even print more for you! Just take it! But, please, leave our lives alone, PLEASE!”

The executives in the board rooms and hedge funds could not contain their laughter, their glee, and within three months they were writing each other huge bonus checks and marveling at how perfectly they had played a nation full of suckers. Millions lost their jobs anyway, and millions lost their homes. But there was no revolt (see #1).

Until now. On Wisconsin! Never has a Michigander been more happy to share a big, great lake with you! You have aroused the sleeping giant know as the working people of the United States of America. Right now the earth is shaking and the ground is shifting under the feet of those who are in charge. Your message has inspired people in all 50 states and that message is: WE HAVE HAD IT! We reject anyone tells us America is broke and broken. It’s just the opposite! We are rich with talent and ideas and hard work and, yes, love. Love and compassion toward those who have, through no fault of their own, ended up as the least among us. But they still crave what we all crave: Our country back! Our democracy back! Our good name back! The United States of America. NOT the Corporate States of America. The United States of America!

So how do we get this? Well, we do it with a little bit of Egypt here, a little bit of Madison there. And let us pause for a moment and remember that it was a poor man with a fruit stand in Tunisia who gave his life so that the world might focus its attention on how a government run by billionaires for billionaires is an affront to freedom and morality and humanity.

Thank you, Wisconsin. You have made people realize this was our last best chance to grab the final thread of what was left of who we are as Americans. For three weeks you have stood in the cold, slept on the floor, skipped out of town to Illinois — whatever it took, you have done it, and one thing is for certain: Madison is only the beginning. The smug rich have overplayed their hand. They couldn’t have just been content with the money they raided from the treasury. They couldn’t be satiated by simply removing millions of jobs and shipping them overseas to exploit the poor elsewhere. No, they had to have more – something more than all the riches in the world. They had to have our soul. They had to strip us of our dignity. They had to shut us up and shut us down so that we could not even sit at a table with them and bargain about simple things like classroom size or bulletproof vests for everyone on the police force or letting a pilot just get a few extra hours sleep so he or she can do their job — their $19,000 a year job. That’s how much some rookie pilots on commuter airlines make, maybe even the rookie pilots flying people here to Madison. But he’s stopped trying to get better pay. All he asks is that he doesn’t have to sleep in his car between shifts at O’Hare airport. That’s how despicably low we have sunk. The wealthy couldn’t be content with just paying this man $19,000 a year. They wanted to take away his sleep. They wanted to demean and dehumanize him. After all, he’s just another slob.

And that, my friends, is Corporate America’s fatal mistake. But trying to destroy us they have given birth to a movement — a movement that is becoming a massive, nonviolent revolt across the country. We all knew there had to be a breaking point some day, and that point is upon us. Many people in the media don’t understand this. They say they were caught off guard about Egypt, never saw it coming. Now they act surprised and flummoxed about why so many hundreds of thousands have come to Madison over the last three weeks during brutal winter weather. “Why are they all standing out there in the cold? I mean there was that election in November and that was supposed to be that!

“There’s something happening here, and you don’t know what it is, do you…?”

America ain’t broke! The only thing that’s broke is the moral compass of the rulers. And we aim to fix that compass and steer the ship ourselves from now on. Never forget, as long as that Constitution of ours still stands, it’s one person, one vote, and it’s the thing the rich hate most about America — because even though they seem to hold all the money and all the cards, they begrudgingly know this one unshakeable basic fact: There are more of us than there are of them!

Stone

All day the Little Dog has been sick.   He is listless and miserable, his little black nose hot and dry.   I checked his gums but they seem ok.  I get scared that he might die.   The past few months would have been utterly unbearable without him.

At about 7.30 he perked up and has been right as rain ever since.  Leaping all over Eric when he arrived for hastily put together dinner.

He is snuggling in my lap as I write.

I think about the darling big dog.  My darling big dog, I miss her more than I ever did.   I still have daily, violent memories of her broken, bloody body.  Searing into my mind.    Replaying the last few moments of her life before that evil truck scraped her across the road.

My fingers angrily bang the letters of those words onto the page.

I CAN’T HELP YOU.

I blame the man driving the truck.  He did it on purpose.  He didn’t stop.  Bastard.

At moments like this I soothe myself with memories of home.  I think a great deal of England-green and pleasant land.  The Kent countryside, the buses to Canterbury, Georgina, The Goods Shed, etc. etc., I nightly drive through Clowes Wood in my semi conscious state..naked..shameless.

I remember a recurring nightmare:  I am a young boy naked in the schoolyard.  I have no idea where my clothes are or where I lost them.   I hide behind the half door in the toilets as the other children are called to class.  I stand naked in the schoolyard covering myself, the cold wind whipping grit into my eyes.  The other children sitting warm inside at their desks.

Last night as he was with me in my bed I lay thinking of how I might get home safely.  How can I get back home?  For all that raucous, interminable thinking we slept soundly.

I’ve not written a word these past few days.  Full moon blues I call it.   I lost interest in my blog as things calmed down with my (ex?) and my new friend holidayed in Italy.

I had to deal with a moving traffic violation issue that meant going to the Superior Court twice this week.  The judge was very fair and funny but going through a stop sign still cost me $550.  I have opted for community service.  The art auction last Sunday seemed to vindicate my ability to pick the winners.  Things sold mostly at the upper end of the estimate.  I bought a beautiful candle stick by a potter whose name I have forgotten.

Prevaricating.  Stifled.  Tongue-tied.

The point is:  I can’t really write down any of my true feelings.  I am in shut down mode.  I can’t do anything, move anywhere, release myself..rant or rave.  The malaise seems to affect every area of my life.

After the headiness of New York I’ve fallen into a sharp decline, my confidence at an all time low.    Dinner with friends last weekend I simply couldn’t hold my head up, my libido, my enthusiasm, my recall deserting me.  She was a very cool next generation producer.  CAA agents greeting her at our table.  Hugs and kisses.  Fast track.

I say to myself, “I am on my own with no one to focus on, no one to say that I love.”    It feels like a terrible waste.   I had some real hope!  Hope that I could travel the world with a man I was excited by.  How those dreams crumble into dust.  I am fractured by time and distance.  I am in the wrong city, in the wrong country, on the wrong fucking planet.  I am desperate for a change of circumstance.

The road that leads to the Malibu house is weeks from being repaired.  It maybe the very metaphor I am looking for.  The road to the house is being repaired so I can escape my verdant prison.   Yet every day I do my best to make it more like paradise.

I want to write about The Great BP Catastrophe but I can’t.  I want to write about anything other than me but each time I begin I am stopped by something inescapable.  I just don’t care. I don’t care about anything.  I am exhausted..spent.

Beaten by the sheer force of inequity:

BP, miserable pictures of delicate Pelican eggs smeared with crude oil.  The watered down banking regulations that caused Wall Street a collective sigh of relief. Congress about to pass an additional $32 billion to pay for war in Afghanistan yet it struggling to justify a $23 billion bill to forestall the layoff of nearly 300,000 teachers next year.

What kind of country are we?