I’m sitting in Little Pine right now eating the unbelievable vegan french toast — so thick, doughy and sweet, got all these different berries on it. Nobody else’s is close. And good on you for having the best hash browns and tomato soup in veganville.
And you know what else— thanks for being the manic messiah on stage. I’ve seen you running around possessed at the old Promo West in Columbus, Ohio and your Area2 show at the Jones Beach Amphitheater on Long Island — that concert was something else, with David Bowie cursing and daring God to make it rain, thunder and lighting even harder than it was — and God rising to the occasion by blowing over banners and lights and scaffolding until all of us ran away from the deluge. Not exactly “Panic in Detroit” but good enough for rock and roll work.
I recently saw the incredible video of your song, “Don’t Leave Me,” which powerfully captures what it’s like to be in a research lab or factory farm and not be able to rescue the animals, the feeling of betrayal of leaving them there, how well aware the animals are of the crimes committed against them, the monumental evil and injustice of raising and killing innocent beings for food, fur and “research.” You’ve made a loud, clear call to veganism as a moral base line, not as something noble we can do but the bare minimum for claims to being ethical at all. You’ve done a great thing.
Would that your head was on as straight about human problems and their solutions.
Sometimes I think the best way to get to the heart of a matter is by digressing. For instance, I don’t like that wooden deer head on the wall behind the cash register. I guess it’s some kind of cool ironic statement, coming from a committed animal activist such as yourself. I think it’s just pure pretentious bullshit and normalizes the idea that it’s fine for humans to separate other species’ heads from their bodies. (But WTF do I know — I’m from Deplorable, OH 45505.) None of your local vegan sycophants will tell you this because the animal rights movement, such as it is/was, became a tame celebrity-worshipping controlled opposition two+ decades ago.
I just read your open letter to Billboard lamenting the Trumped queen without a crown so I thought I would write one to you. I didn’t know you have been a supporter of Hillary Clinton for almost 20 years. Looks like you’re going to be known as Mopey for awhile.
Thanks for the wi-fi. Now on to the fake-meat of the matter:
You excoriate the women and “family values voters” who voted for Trump. But railing against Trump’s sexism is only a winner if your candidate’s husband is not a serial sexual assaulter. The deplorables don’t have your sophistication to see the differences between Bill Clinton’s and Donald Trump’s conduct toward women. (They didn’t grow up “spelling women W-O-M-Y-N” as you note in your Rolling Stone column.) Neither Trump’s deplorables nor the adorables who chose Hillary voted based on character because neither candidate has any. The deplorables voted on emotion and the hope (so 2008) that there might be a change in their current circumstances or, failing that, just blow up the whole fucking shit house. Hillary and Obama saying the country is on the right track, while a record 94 million people are not in the labor force, is not a winner.
You ask, “America, why are you so afraid of evidence?” And then you list Trump’s obvious faults and castigate the people who voted for him. What caught my eye is the year 1995 when you said Trump lost almost a billion dollars.
What else was going on in this time period?
Well, in 1994 Bill Clinton gave us his crime bill (written by war monger and bag man for the credit card mobsters, Joe Biden — strange how some pieces of shit aren’t biodegradable) which created 50 new federal offenses, allocated millions of dollars for new prisons and the three strikes law to make sure those cages got filled. It also made 60 new offenses eligible for the death penalty, eliminated inmates from getting higher education — cuz we want them to be less educated and less vested in society when they come out — and put 100,000 slave catchers on the streets to go after those “super predators” as Hillary called them.
In short, after Nixon laid the foundation of the mass incarceration state with his fake war on drugs in 1971, and Reagan put up the walls of mandatory minimums and racist sentencing disparities, the Clintons came along and put on the finishing touches and locked the doors. (Here’s a fearful symmetry for you: Nixon’s War on Drugs was a cover for destroying the radical black left and Bill Clinton repackaged it in 1998 as Plan Columbia to destroy Marxist guerrillas in Columbia and as a base of operations to destroy the left in all of Latin America. Remember, Moby, America is all about destroying the left everywhere in the world — sometimes the tools are fake wars on drugs, sometimes Islamic fanatics. The US ruling class has so thoroughly destroyed the left in America that people like you don’t even know that you’re not on it.)
Then, in 1996, a year after Trump lost the billion dollars that is so vexing for you, Bill Clinton “ended welfare as we know it” by eliminating FDR’s 1935 Aid to Families with Dependent Children and driving America’s poorest people out of their homes and into homeless shelters or the streets. (When you drive south a couple miles down from Little Pine on Glendale Ave., and see the mini tent city under the overpass, thank faithful servants to capital like the Clintons whose crimes aren’t dead — they’re not even past.) Senior advisers to Slick Willie prepared a study that estimated that over a million children would fall into poverty if he ended AFDC and he did it anyway. Children’s Defense Fund founder Marian Wright Edelman said at the time: “President Clinton’s signature on this pernicious bill makes a mockery of his pledge not to hurt children.” Journalist and social justice activist Barbara Ehrenreich: “It is hard to miss the racism and misogyny that helped motivate welfare reform.” But what do these people know about impoverished mothers and children — and the villains who wrecked their lives — compared to some happening coastal music maker such as yourself? Ben Norton — the token human being at Salon — summed it all up nicely here.
(Side bar: Trump would never bring up the Clintons’ gutting welfare but every time he ran at Hillary from the left — on trade or foreign intervention — he got support, you could hear it in the audience of every debate. The country is — finally — open to a politician who at least says s/he’s more interested in re-building America than tearing down other nations. But there’s cyborg Hillary — “erudite” as you hilariously call her — marching in neocon lockstep about no-fly zones in Syria and fighting Russia over it. No average American, on the left or right, wants to fight Russia over Syria — it’s only the Israel-firsters, those traitors to America. Now, admittedly, I’m a traitor to America too but I can’t get any traction like the Zionists. Formerly rabid, mad-bombing comment sections of Yahoo News, The Washington Post and the New York Times have flipped over the last year with 90% of commenters now against Hillary’s Syria policy. When the mad dogs of war have lost interest in it, it’s not a winning strategy to promote it.)
(Before I forget, Moby, didn’t you think it was funny that Trump’s theme song on his victory night was the Stones’ “You Can’t Away Get What You Want.” Sure beats weak-ass shit like the Clintons’ choice of “Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow.”)
You claim that Reagan and Bush “ruined the economy” and Clinton and Obama came after them and “fixed it.” I’m glad you brought this up. There’s no ups and downs here — there is only the continual, seamless economic ruination of the working class majority. In 1999 Clinton repealed FDR’s Glass-Steagall Act that prevented banks from gambling with depositor’s money, and this paved the way for the great financial meltdown in 2008, from which the working class still has not recovered. You’re so utterly out of touch with most of America that you think people have recovered. Half of Americans can’t come up with $400 for an emergency. Get up to speed on flyover country by listening to James McMurtry’s “We Can’t Make It Here Anymore.” With NAFTA, Clinton not only finished off the rust belt but he was able to dump Archer Daniels Midland’s heavily subsidized grain on Mexico, driving thousands of peasant farmers off their land and across the border, perhaps to work as dishwashers and cooks in your restaurant. Trump’s candidacy can be seen as the delayed reaction of the working class to Bill Clinton’s presidency. So, therefore, run Hillary against him! Bernie handily beat Trump in every poll but the dumbocrats just had to have the first woman war criminal and first woman Wall Street stooge as president — now that’s goddam diversity!
As for Obama, a perfect record: no CIA torturers or spying telecom companies or criminal bankers prosecuted, the elimination of habeas corpus with the National Defense Authorization Act, the precedent of killing American citizens without charge or trial, the greatest destruction of black wealth in over 100 years, the greatest transfer of wealth from the working class majority up the super rich since the Great Depression, seven countries illegally bombed, many thousands killed and millions injured, maimed and made into refugees in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Yemen, the greatest expansion of the surveillance state, the deportation of over two million immigrants — the most in America’s history, the bailing out of two deservedly failing industries: nuclear power and health care, the latter while Obama had Democrat majorities in the House and Senate and 70% of the American public begging for single payer health care. And the cherry on top: the complete pacification and demobilization of the so-called “left” to any of the foregoing acts which they would be shrieking about had Bush done them. Obama’s one of the most successful presidents the lords of capital have ever owned.
Nearer to your heart, Moby, Obama re-legalized horse slaughter for human consumption after it was banned under the big bad Bush. Obama’s pole axes — just like his drones — are witty, uplifting, break ground for minorities and attended Harvard, unlike awful Republican ones. As a parting shot to non-human beings, Obama is planning for the Food Safety and Inspection Service to label factory farmed “meat” — unanesthetized castration, debeaking, dehorning, prolonged confinement — “humane.” That’s how Obama “fixed” things, Moby — and the American people were so appreciative that they elected Donald Trump! Fucking ingrates! Now, why didn’t Trump’s talk about “pussy-grabbing” and “building a wall” (that’s already there) mitigate against all of this? A puzzler for the fake left mind. Who’s “afraid of evidence,” Moby?
Speaking of the deplorables, I’m not sure if they defeated Hillary Clinton. She may have been defeated by the ownership of the country. She may have been betrayed by someone close to her or above her by sending those emails to Wikileaks. Although there were myriad great reasons for her loss, in her post-election conference call with donors, she noted those leaks came at key moments in her campaign, none more weird than James Roseannadanna Comey’s late October surprise and subsequent “Nevermind.” He might as well have added “Nevermore.” Hillary knows she lost the trust of the plutocrats she’s slavishly devoted herself to for decades. Denying her the ultimate marriage to power, they left her standing at the altar. And going home with peckerhead is no consolation.
Who in power would want to derail Hillary? They all seemed to be in her corner. But perhaps some of the richest non-Zionist families in America didn’t like the prospect of all the wealth they’ve stolen to go up in smoke in a nuclear war with Russia on behalf of shit most of them they don’t care about — like neocons dreams of destroying Syria for Israel. Perhaps the people in the CIA, the NSA or the FBI who understand that they need to be the only ones with blackmail material on American politicians — it’s no good if Russia, China or others obtained damaging dirt from her unsecured server. Another thought is that putting Hillary in was going to paralyze the congress with endless investigations so that the business of America — capitalist plunder — would be hindered. You might have had some sexist Tea Party assholes ruining Hillary’s chances of turning over Social Security to Wall Street — just like their racism and spite against Obama stopped him from his “grand bargain” of selling out senior citizens.
Nobody stands taller and more righteous against “comments” than you do, Moby, whether the comments are directed against women, gays or Latinos. But you give us crickets about Obama deporting 2.5 million immigrants. To you, Trump’s comments about “rapist Mexicans” is worse than rounding up 2.5 million people, wrecking untold families and sending them back to Mexico. And ask the people of Honduras what they think of Obama and Hillary’s real and tangible coup and its murderous aftermath which is sending people fleeing across borders to this day. Honduras is now the murder capital of the world for labor organizers and environmental activists. Read murdered activist Berta Caceres’ wiki page and see what she thinks of your beloved Hillary. Hillary Clinton doesn’t have one one/millionth the humanity or integrity of Berta Caceres. While your heroes — Obama and Hillary — made Honduran lives unbearable, another fucking asshole is going to block their escape route at the southern border. A humane and reasonable person would say that America should stop making peoples’ lives unlivable — in Honduras, in Mexico, in Syria, in Libya — so they can stay in their own countries — but Obama and the Clintons are the well-rewarded tools of barbarous capital. The world can’t take any more of your concept of “erudition.”
Lastly, you show true intellectual and moral cowardice in your Billboard letter and your Rolling Stone column by not mentioning the issue of war and peace, the most important issue of this or any other time. Hillary Clinton has supported every war in our lifetime. She’s supported and/or directly put in motion the obliteration of people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Honduras and was hungering to fuck up the Iranian people for the benefit of big donor Haim Saban and Israel. Hillary cackled like the fiend that she is about the sodomizing of Gaddafi with a bayonet. Libyans had free healthcare and education and Libyan women had the highest status of any in Africa — and Hillary and Obama destroyed all of it, turning Libya into a takfiri playground. Moby, do Libyan women factor into your discussion of “first-, second- and third-wave feminism” that you pat yourself on the back about in your Rolling Stone column? Can you be anymore fucking hypocritical and irrelevant? Why don’t you care about those people, those lives? How many thousands of Muslim deaths can you justify and/or look away from in order to support Hillary and Obama? How does war and peace not even merit a mention in your Billboard letter? What the fuck is that matter with you? The Unbearable Lightness of a Fake Left Whale. You’re a fucking joke but you’re presented to us as someone on the left to be listened to. Rubbish. You’re a tool of capitalist media. You’re here so other, truly radical voices, aren’t. Anyone with any class consciousness would understand that the Clintons, Obama, Bush and Cheney are all monsters, enemies of the worldwide working class who belong in jail.
Remember the fake deer head on your restaurant wall that I said normalizes the idea that it’s OK for humans to separate other species’ heads from their bodies? You and the rest of the fake left have normalized the idea that it’s “progressive” to support war criminals, wreck other nation’s sovereignty and give away the country to Wall Street. The deplorables aren’t the problem, Moby. There will always be fearful people and reactionaries who scapegoat minorities. The problem is people like you: the poseurs and the people who stopped progressing, the unclassconcious sell-out left that has walked off the playing field over the past 40 years, especially the unions who promote bullshit like the “brotherhood of capital and labor” when it’s their historical mission to overthrow capitalism. And don’t forget the white left that talked a good game in the 1960s and early 1970s but ran like hell away from black people — physically, politically, socially — as soon as they were able. (White people boxes: Viet Nam War over — white asses spared — check. Roe v. Wade — white wombs freed — check. We’re outta here.)
In your pre-election Rolling Stone column you talk about your support of Hillary hurting your professional life but you’re gonna bravely do it anyway because keeping Trump out of the White House is more important than “trying to protect a career.” More meaningless tripe and unearned high regard, spoken by someone whose net worth is $32 million and owns this mansion. Non-humans excepted, you are too invested in this system to ever be an effective advocate for the revolutionary changes that need to be made. You buttress this system. You did great under Bush and Obama, you will do great under Trump. Progress always comes (or doesn’t) from people with their backs against the wall. It never comes from the comfortable. To paraphrase Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report: Progress in America will come from the working class majority making the streets ungovernable by anyone other than us.
Dan De Leon recommends socialism everywhere, including workers at Little Pine overthrowing Moby and owning and operating it in their own interests.