"Everybody wants to Rule the World":
Would the country be better off if we had a single dictator who made all the decisions? Do countries under a dictatorship prosper more effectively than those with other forms of government?
I am not a political scientist, so I do not know the answer to this question. Since dictatorships tend to be totalitarian and oppressive, I am not seriously advocating that fascism (as often dictatorships are also fascist governments) is my favored form of government or that I would prefer to live under such a regime.
And so, the shirt is meant to be funny. Ironic, even, if you subscribe to a more broad definition of irony.
This is my second Cerebus shirt. I only own two, so this is for Cerebus features. I already featured Cerebus as "Pope" in my blog entry for T-shirt #24.
This shirt features another idea that is common among people, and I have heard it come out of the mouths of many friends and associates: "The world would be a much better place if I was in charge."
Could we live in a new world order made to serve your agenda or my self-interest-based agenda?
Would a world with my agenda be any better than a world with your agenda?
Do we already live in such a world dictated by an Illuminati-like cartel of churches, heads of state, corporate executives, and assorted special interest groups?
ELIMINATE IT: THE ATOMIC PILGRIMAGE: If Cerebus were the dictator, in the version of the character featured in today's T-shirt image, he would just hack and slash whatever got in his way, whatever he didn't like. Ruling the world through elimination of whatever does not fit like a glove into your New World Order is a very appealing option. My friends (see T-shirt #81) invented the idea of the Atomic Pilgrimage, in which all the undesirables are marched into the desert and blown to smithereens with nuclear weapons. Marching to their doom would be all the rapists and other heinous criminals, religious zealots, all the power hungry and excessively greedy, all those deemed too "stupid" to continue to live, and so on. We rule the world. We choose who lives and who makes a date with a nuke. This idea is firmly rooted in misanthropy, which I explored in T-shirt #40. There is quite a bit of misanthropy in Cerebus (also explored to some extent in T-shirt #24). I have tried to cast off my misanthropy, which seems unnecessarily arrogant and an unwise reaction the universe. If we are all connected, then the better reaction to the universe is love. But judgment comes easy; love is hard.
Also, I explored these ideas in T-shirt #64: Embrace Uncertainty.
SURVEILLANCE SOCIETY: Ruling the world through might and force is no longer necessary because technology has changed the game. Armies used to be the route to great power. (This idea was mentioned in last night's GAME OF THRONES, season three finale.) Knowledge and resources also played a role, but these could both be secured and defended with armies. Now, armies still defend possession of the means of control, but those who control technology control the world. Love the machine; fear the machine. Noticed all the cameras staring down at you from dozens, maybe hundreds of vantage points that you pass each day? More and more cameras all the time. RFID tags in your clothes, food, auto parts, and soon maybe underneath your skin. Computers tracking your purchases, web page views, personal data, habits, vices, all while running your face through facial recognition software and using MRI scans to identify how your brain lights up in reaction to different stimuli.
Scared yet? The virtual Panopticon has arrived. Want to rule the world? Want to run a computer program that scans millions of data streams: camera video, RFID information, data based repositories of consumer markets? We are being watched, our data analyzed, and complex plans are being hatched to keep us controlled, fat, and complacent.
There are many, many books on the rise of surveillance society, living off the grid, and the issues of privacy and freedom. Three of my favorites are No Place to Hide by Robert O'Harrow, The novels of John Twelve Hawks starting with The Traveler, and Welcome to the Machine by Derrick Jensen and George Draffan.
Though I should mention Cory Doctorow, also, as I am currently reading Homeland, a very good sequel to the excellent Little Brother.
How prophetic was Pink Floyd's frightening, slow, dirge-like "Welcome to the Machine"?
So what? What does all this have to do with Cerebus?
Nothing and everything.
Ruling the world, control through the machine, and how we cope in the end: DOCTOR WHISKY. Cerebus used to booze it up quite a bit as a means of coping with the disastrous ruin of his life created by the choices he had made. My favorite author Warren Ellis (whom I have blogged about in T-shirt #75 and T-shirt #22) often sends Twitter prescriptions from "Doctor Whisky." In 2008, he held court from a pub near London on Twitter with his thoughts on whisky, whiskey, and bourbon. With due credit, I want to enter his thoughts into the permanent record here beyond the jump because these Twitter messages are what made me a whisky lover.
As for this edition of 365 T-shirts, that's a wrap.
"Hey, you, get off of my cloud" kind of sums it up.
- chris tower - date - time
THE RETURN OF DOCTOR WHISKY
Warren Ellis' tirade about whisky-whiskey backwards
- good night sinners about 10 hours ago from twhirl
- Madness: just checked back, and received 300 reply messages in 30 mins... I guess a few of you were interested...! about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- @eliopoulos I'm actually writing a treatment with my other hand. Almost literally. about 11 hours ago from web in reply to eliopoulos
- Okay, I am actually getting complaints now, unsurprisingly, so I'm going back to drinking and listening to Parts & Labor and Kode9... about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- The Laphroaig and the Bruichladdich are where to start with Islays, as they won't make you feel like you're savaged by a pharmacy. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- The Ardbeg and the Bowmore Islays need to be casked in a pale oloroso sherry butt for at least 12 years to draw the poison out of them. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- The Ardbeg, for instance, is often said to have "iodine tones." Did you fancy drinking iodine? I mean, you might be hard up, but... about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Beware the Islay whiskies, which you'll see described as "peaty" or "medicinal." This means they taste a bit like antiseptic wash. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- My personal favourite whisky, as mentioned earlier, is the Springbank Campbeltown. Any year is good. Obv, if you can steal a 31-year-old... about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- People asking about Jameson Irish whiskey - I find it dull. I mean, produce 70 zillion bottles of the shit per annum, it's gonna be generic about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Someone asked about Glenfiddich. This is a "starter" whisky. Like training wheels for your liver. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- ..see, all the bloody Irish are chiming in about how we DO shit in the kegs, now...! about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- If a single malt Scotch is 40% proof, drink it neat. If greater than 40%, you can add a splash of spring water, which "opens up" the drink. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Someone asked about Johnnie Walker. Johnnie Walker is a blended whisky, & therefore suitable for cooking or mixers. Or cleaning metal things about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Some say they've been told that you drop a single icecube in Glenlivet. These people have been identified as tourists and tricked. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- You do not put ice in single malt Scotch whisky. Seriously. You will be condemned unto the tenth generation for that shit. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Knob Creek and Maker's Mark are good bourbons. Rebel Yell and Wild Turkey... may as well suck off the gas tank of your car. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- There is also bourbon, which is made from corn. Scotch whisky is made from barley and the morning dew on angel's nipples. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- Irish alcohol as a rule doesn't travel well. The Irish won't drink draught Guinness in Britain and claim that we shit in the kegs. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- When we speak of whiskey with a E, we speak of Irish whiskey, my favourites of which are Black Bush and Bushmills. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- First off, when we speak of whisky with no E, we speak of single malt Scotch whisky - uisge beatha, the water of life. about 11 hours ago from twhirl
- People will kill me if I go into a long tirade about whisky on this thing. about 12 hours ago from twhirl
Warren Ellis lives on warrenellis.com and as