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THE DECAY OF AMERICAN MEDIA — Patrick L. Smith on the decline and fall of American journalism; Peter Lee on China and its Uyghur problem; Dave Macaray on brain trauma, profits and the NFL; Lee Ballinger on the bloody history of cotton. PLUS: “The Vindication of Love” by JoAnn Wypijewski; “The Age of SurrealPolitick” by Jeffrey St. Clair; “The Radiation Zone” by Kristin Kolb; “Washington’s Enemies List” by Mike Whitney; “The School of Moral Statecraft” by Chris Floyd and “The Surveillance Films of Laura Poitras” by Kim Nicolini.
Everybody Wins!

Technology’s Underbelly

by DAVID MACARAY

Let’s take a quick look at where we are as a culture, and how far we’ve progressed.  A century ago we were more or less stuck with how we looked and how we performed sexually.  While we could use make-up, powders, hair dyes and wigs to enhance our appearance, we were pretty much destined to look the way Mother Nature intended us to look.

Accordingly, before the invention of Viagara, if men couldn’t get the job done sexually, they were SOL.  Like it or not, Mother Nature didn’t intend for 80-year old men to walk around with erections.  In truth, Mother Nature didn’t intend for 80-year old men to be walking around at all, but the advent of modern medicine and health education changed all that.

Take cosmetic surgery for example.  That procedure has ushered in a whole array of choices.  While the procedure used to be relatively rare, cosmetic surgery is now not only common, it’s ubiquitous, especially among celebrities.  I read somewhere that in the last decade or so, rhinoplasty (nose job) had become the high school graduation gift of choice.  It’s true.  The most prized graduation gift used to be a new car. Today it’s a new face.

Even when the results of cosmetic surgery are disappointing or mildly disturbing (e.g., Steve Wynn, Kenny Rodgers, Bruce Jenner), celebs continue to seek surgical makeovers.  After all, when you consider the big picture, it’s an eminently rational decision.  If you’re unhappy with your body, why not overhaul it?

If I had the extra dough, I could see myself chopping my beak and pinning back my ears, and it wouldn’t be because I’m particularly unhappy with my appearance.  Rather, it’s the enticement—the gnawing allure—of knowing that there’s an alternative, that you can actually reinvent yourself.

While on the subject of physical attributes, let us consider the general anatomical category of penises.  Despite protestations to the contrary, it’s accurate to say that size does, in fact, matter.  Larger is better.  No, you don’t need a 9-inch member in order to please your partner, but you certainly need more than 3-inches to get the job done properly.

Which leads us to a technological prediction.  In the future, lesser endowed men will pay for penis transplants.  Forty-year old millionaires, whom Nature cruelly equipped with 3-inch rods, will pay large-framed, 80-year old Norwegian ex-lumberjacks $500,000 to swap penises with them.  Obviously, the 80-year old Norwegian will jump at the offer because, at his age, he has no use for a large penis.  What’s he going to do with it?

Moreover, as with violins, 80-year old penises work just as well as newer ones.  The only problem with an 80-year old penis is that it’s attached to an 80-year old body no longer capable of using it.  Let’s be realistic:  Even with a pharmaceutical aid, who’s an 80-year ex-lumberjack going to have intercourse with?

So it’s an ideal trade.  The wealthy Asian businessman gets to walk around knowing that he’s now packing some weight, and the formerly well-hung Norwegian gentleman not only comes away with a cool $500,000, but he gets a smaller, more manageable penis in return.

Everybody wins.

David Macaray, an LA playwright and author (“It’s Never Been Easy:  Essays on Modern Labor”), was a former labor union rep.  He can be reached at dmacaray@earthlink.net