How big is your rabbit hole?
You know, I really wish I had a decent post to accompany this photograph. Though, in some respect, virtually every post I've written has been an attempt to decode it. Like the thought of a clown at your door at midnight, it scares the hell out of me. In fact it's gone 1:00 a.m. and I can hardly bear to look at it.
And no, I'm not about to argue that the giant rabbits are entities from Dimension X. I know the picture is from an Easter photo op, and those are just costumes, and inside are probably just sweaty interns. But you know, if I were a two or three-year old, my thoughts would probably run to Whoa - big bunnies! The McMartin toddlers, who spoke of being assaulted by lions and elephants - they were two and three-year olds. They didn't know the big game of the urban jungle have zippers in their hides, as did "older, less credulous children" a few years later in similar incidents in the Netherlands, England and North Carolina.
There's something about the incongruities of the composition that, for me at least, demolishes even the tacky simulacra of innocence. It doesn't look like Easter, it looks like a mind control session to implant bizarre, childlike images for later triggering. And the bunnies aren't even the scariest part. Because that grinning grandfatherly figure? He's your programmer. He's wearing a costume, too.
Those must be good, life-like outfits on the Bush people. Grown men and women in the US media are paid to look at them all day, and reportedly have yet to detect a zipper. This makes it maddening for those of us who have, and who suspect what lies beneath. If we say too much we may sound crazy, even to ourselves.
Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who lost her son in Iraq, recently described a visit to the George W Bush White House in terms that suggest she saw him step right out of his skin. "His mouth kept moving, but there was nothing in his eyes," she says. "His eyes were empty, hollow shells."
The inapppropriate and bizarre behaviour included giving Sheehan's daughter "one of the filthiest looks she had ever gotten in her life" when she seemingly annoyed him by saying "I wish I could bring him back"; repeatedly addressing the grieving parent as "Ma" and appearing to have not bothered to learn their names; and most disturbing, saying, I can’t even imagine losing a loved one, a mother or a father or a sister or a brother," when he had, at the age of six, lost his beloved three-year old sister Robin to leukemia.
Justin Frank writes in Bush on the Couch:
Robin died in New York in October 1953; her parents spent the next day golfing in Rye, attending a small memorial service the following day before flying back to Texas. George learned of his sister's illness only after her death, when his parents returned to Texas, where the family remained while the child's body was buried in a Connecticut family plot. There was no funeral.
I wrote that Sheehan saw Bush step out of his skin, but after considering the sheer vacancy of his behaviour, perhaps what she saw was that there is nothing beneath the skin. Maybe that's all there is left to some Bushes.
Some other Bushes, though, they have both the insides and the incongruent outsides.
By the way, you should head over to Professor Pan's blog and read "Sex, Drugs, Mind Control and Gitmo." Pan assesses the ritualized sex and violence of Abu Ghraib's "giant human experiment" and sees a possible clandestine school for Manchurian Candidates:
Clearly the purpose of these treatments is not to gain information. Most of the detainees are low-level members or conscripts of Al Qaeda, and many are innocents. The military has admitted that only a quarter of the detainees had any valuable information. Is Guantanamo the 21st Century version of Allan Memorial Hospital -- an experimental torture chamber for testing new mind-altering and controlling technologies?
And if it's July they must be cleaning the grill at Bohemian Grove, and Jeremy of Fantastic Planet shares some timely meditations on initiation, counter-initiation and deep politics:
Heck, what the devil is “initiation,” anyhow? It can be anything from simple ritual instruction or fraterntity hazing to the honest-to-goddess experience of Isis like good ol’ Apuleius had in the quote at the top of this post. The only way I can really describe initiation with any definitiveness is by being vague; my personal definition of initiation is The Crossing of a Threshold. The question then becomes, what does one do after said threshold is crossed, and what kind of deals did one make with the Dwellers on the Threshold in order to pass?