Teabaggers and the Dark Carnival

Every knucklehead with an internet connection has seen the latest video from hip hop pioneers Insane Clown Posse, but in case you’ve been living in a cave for the past week in a futile attempt to cleanse your mind of idiotic web videos, here it is!

What’s amazing about this video is how eerily synced ICP’s mindset is with that of your average teabagging militant reactionary: a violently willed ignorance in the face of all evidence.  In this little diddy, horror-core visionaries Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope express a dumbstruck wonder at the natural world more appropriate for medieval serfs than two guys in the 21st century who presumably know how to operate a cellphone (a pelican tried to eat his!).  These noted scholars view a whole array of natural phenomena, from rainbows to magnets to the existence of giraffes as “magic.”  Now, it is true that, as Arthur C. Clarke once noted,  that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, but we’re not talking about nanobots or time travel.  Scientific concepts like light refraction, magnetic fields and (gasp!) evolution are things that most kids should pick up by middle school.   However, there’s no way to show ICP that these supposed “miracles” are all easily explainable without shrugging our shoulders and calling “magic.”  The only people qualified to explain these things to ICP are the dreaded “scientists,” who, we learn from the song, ICP doesn’t “wanna talk to,” because “motherfucker’s lyin, makin’ me pissed.”  This really is the key lyric, where ICP basically admits that all of their “miracles” do, indeed, have natural explanations, but rather than accept them, they defiantly cling to ignorance in order to maintain their childlike wonder.  In this way, ICP, as anti-social and “urban” as they might seem to the great silent majority, is channeling the denialist worldview currently being pimped to an over-awed mass of the carbuncular elderly by Glenn Beck and similar charlatans.  The only way to maintain rapturous belief in a magical sky ruler is by denying thousands of years of scientific understanding, including evolution, which religious folks rightly see as the biggest threat to a religious view of the universe.  They do this by simultaneously denying the validity of science as a discipline, while also creating parallel pseudo-sciences to muddy the epistemic waters.  So, if the overwhelming evidence for evolution turns your blood cold, you can either wave a copy of the bible and yell real loud, or wave something you printed off from the Discovery Institute website and yell real loud.  If the notion of man-made global warming seems like a socialist plot to make Al Gore the iron-fisted ruler of the planet, you can simply make a jerk-off gesture at the foolish hubris of trying to understand something as mysterious as weather, or bust out the obfuscatory bullshit ground out daily by oil company funded “think tanks.”  This dual track strategy bespeaks a certain unspoken hypocrisy, a silent recognition of the power and validity of scientific understanding that they try to deny and manipulate at once.  Behind it all is a timeless drive to prop up religiously justified social and economic hierarchies.

This hypocrisy is not usually shared by the foot soldiers of the army of reaction: for them, the cherished mysteries of a world haunted by demons and angels must be protected at all costs, even at price of looking like a pie-eyed moron in public, like the Insane Clown Posse.  The very fact that Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope felt confident enough in their caveman cosmology to put it on the Youtube speaks to the enduring power of the Juggalo army and the purity of their convictions.  These gentlemen are truly people of the land, the common clay of the New West…you know, morons.

  1. chelle
    April 24, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    Please don’t take this as a holy rollin’ bible thumpin’ moronic response but even if we listen to scientists and they explain evolution, magnets, the birth of babies etc, why should we cease to be amazed at the wonders around us? Why is evolution possible? What decided that we should be able to reproduce instead of being like rocks? I understand magnets and their polarities but what caused them? What causes gravity? Why are the moon, sun and stars in space? I think ICP is just saying to never stop looking for the wonders of life. The fact that we can think and aren’t just rocks. That we can appreciate the world around us. To be thankful for the Miracles that happen everyday around us. Scientists can come up with why some things are the way they are. They can find cures and medicines for disease. Scientists are great but why are they that smart? A miracle (to me) is the question behind all the answers that simply boggles the mind with why?
    I like the way you do think but I find it sad that it comes across that you would write off all the wonders this life has to offer as child like thinking. Hope you have a good day and please do not be offended by this in anyway.

  2. mattchristman
    April 26, 2010 at 10:03 am

    My beef w/ the Posse is not their childlike wonder at the natural world, it’s the fact that they seem to think the only way to find wonder in the world is by affecting an attitude of willful ignorance. Why do they gotta hate on the scientists, yo? Things like magnets and stars are EVEN MORE AMAZING when you actually know how they work and what they’re made of. Shit, every particle in our body was originally forged in the heart of a star. WE ARE LITERALLY MADE OUT OF STARS! How cool is that? How literally WONDERFUL is that? And the only way you can appreciate that fact is by listening to some of those motherfucking scientists.

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