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PARIS, THE NEW NORMAL? — Diana Johnstone files an in-depth report from Paris on the political reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings; The Treachery of the Black Political Class: Margaret Kimberley charts the rise and fall of the Congressional Black Caucus; The New Great Game: Pepe Escobar assays the game-changing new alliance between Russia and Turkey; Will the Frackers Go Bust? Joshua Frank reports on how the collapse of global oil prices might spell the end of the fracking frenzy in the Bakken Shale; The Future of the Giraffe: Ecologist Monica Bond reports from Tanzania on the frantic efforts to save one of the world’s most iconic species. Plus: Jeffrey St. Clair on Satire in the Service of Power; Chris Floyd on the Age of Terrorism and Absurdity; Mike Whitney on the Drop Dead Fed; John Wight on the rampant racism of Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper;” John Walsh on Hillary Clinton and Lee Ballinger on the Gift of Anger.
Narcissism With a Scalpel

Suffering for Superficiality

by MICHAEL McDAETH

Poor creatures. Brittle-boned leather-skinned skeletons. Ignorant. Retarded. Miserable. Mad porcelain dolls. Committed to hours of painful unnecessary surgery for vanity and their glass-eyed keepers. They look like vampires indeed they are vampires. Sucking from the public tit. They are going to live forever!

Poor pathetic creatures. Endlessly turning in front of the mirror. The reality cameras. Strapped in, oh no, the fatal flaw; a shallow chin, a bump on the nose, teacup breasts, old age. There’s always a fix.

The glass-eyed keepers.Their self-worth abstracted to their money, positions, wives. What can they say? Everything must be propped up. Nothing stands on its own anymore except the illusions that drape their lives, oozing from their pores as they are woo whooing in a limo or huffing and puffing on a golf course while the wives sitting poolside, giggle together, “Ugly people should not be allowed near the pool” take each other apart, self-aggrandize, parrot for the lens, caught in their own thought bubbles.

For a lucky few, the botched facelift; scar tissue, hanging flesh, lopsided face, the sad clown, the Oprah interview. “Oprah, I learned that there is more to life then a pretty face and that one should accept themselves and others as they are and that we are spirits in a material world.” “Amen, sister.” They break for commercial, it’s a spot for Victoria’s Secret, what were they talking about?

Back in the gated communities the poor pathetic boorish creatures continue unabated, it is simply beyond them; no retreat, up the security. They’ll get to heaven like an elephant through a keyhole.

Let us hope that there will be a lot more botched facelifts in the future. Their lives may depend on it.

Michael McDaeth is a writer and musician living in Seattle. He is the author of the novel Roads and Parking Lots. He can be reached atmmcdaeth@msn.com