Illuminati, Illuminati, Illuminati

After one of Lady Gaga’s earliest music videos (I forget which one), I read a comment on Evil Beet Gossip that began with “Illuminati, Illuminati, Illuminati.” The (insane) commenter then described interpretations of how Lady Gaga’s hands were positioned and how that was some sort of Illuminati signal.

This was the first time in my life that I realized that there were people outside of psychiatric hospitals and works of fiction who believe in a vast and long-lived conspiratorial cabal that secretly controls almost everything, from governments and corporations to pop singers.

This idea is . . . insane. But what is really, really insane is the “evidence” to which people point to prove their erratic conspiracy theories. Because what you see from these whackadoos more than moneymaking schemes is absolutely-off-the-rails interpretations of innocuous entertainment. Like this deranged break-down of Madonna’s Half-Time show.

Now, for one thing, I’ve learned from reading these comments (usually on Evil Beet Gossip, though they only show up occasionally) that by “Illuminati” they actually mean “anything and everything that they imagine.” A specific set of religious beliefs (Pagan, Catholic, Muslim, Satanist—basically whatever they like), secret government mind-control programs (MK Ultra was a real, failed government program that, um, did not successfully grant Illuminati “monarchs” mind-control powers), or honestly whatever they want. Any mention of MK Ultra that is not about the past government project, science fiction, or the Muse song should be grounds for being committed to a psychiatric facility.

The results are entertaining, but they would be more so if there weren’t real people who held these beliefs. People who have the right to vote and raise children and own guns.

Okay, from the analysis of Madonna’s Half-Time show, here is an excerpt.

We see the male dancers doing acrobats for her track “Music”. During this chaos, there were two male dancers that got down on all fours, like the Muslims do when they pray to Allah.  Most cheerleading teams, do not actually assume a prostration position when building a pyramid but in Satanic Rituals, it is believed that Lucifer or the devil would assume a prostration position and the witches would line up and kiss his anus as a sign of respect.  We not only saw a classic Lucifer Ritual Pose but we also saw the quick building of a pyramid by her dancers.

What the hell.

I mean, even disregarding that this person makes up a non-existent Satanic ritual in order to prove that Madonna’s show was in reference to it, and disregarding the fact that the author of this analysis apparently lacks the ability to distinguish between individual religions, if the Illuminati were a real thing who controlled the world, why would they hide clues to their existence in some of the most-viewed pieces of entertainment in the world? I mean, if they did that, any deranged loner could piece together all of their all-powerful conspiratorial secrets.

Obviously, that’s just the sort of thinking that “they” want me to have.

And under this Evil Beet Gossip post about Mary-Kate Olsen having a creepy-acting, much-older boyfriend, one comment was “Illuminati monarch slave and master.” You guys, attractive young women date unattractive or even repulsive older guys all of the time. Occam’s Razor isn’t the key to answering all questions, but it’s a lot better than Occam’s Rollercoaster Of Crazy, which is what these conspiracy theorists apparently use to guide their speculation. Another comment said: “The globalists love the MK Ultra slaves. The Globalists own all of us.”

And then, do you guys remember when Blue Ivy (the child of Beyonce and Jay-Z) was born? One of the worldwide trends was “Illuminati’s Very Youngest.” Because obviously the name “Ivy” was just an acronym. While most of the people tweeting those three words were talking about how insane it was, it is STILL all kinds of crazy that the Illuminati are brought into any discussion that is not about a work of fiction.

So stop it.


PS: I’m sorry, I had to pretend that the Illuminati don’t exist! They are always watching.

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Can We Talk About Taylor Swift For A Moment?

photo of taylor swift pictures
Personally, I am not really a fan. I am really sorry that that one guy at the 2009 VMAs interrupted her like a crazy person. Kanye West, right? I only have a vague idea of who he is. His tweets are basically those of Tracy Jordan from 30 Rock, as I understand things.

Mostly against my will, I do know who Taylor Swift is. I started becoming aware of famous people about whom I do not care when I started reading Evil Beet Gossip back in late 2008—and I have been addicted ever since.

Some number of months after the 2009 VMAs, I saw this adorable video, which is the gay version of her “You Belong With Me” music video. As a result, I know that particular song. I have not genuinely cared for any of her music that I have heard.

I know that she has great taste in guys. I know that, despite her awful bangs, she is a beautiful young woman who is extremely successful and has a figure for which millions of young women would kill.

I also know that I am not a fan. Her music has this very southern element to it and, while my family has been in this part of the southeastern United States for at least seven generations, and probably more than that, I am not a fan of Country Music. The sound of a banjo honestly just seems like the music that would accompany a lynch mob. Also, and perhaps more importantly, Taylor Swift’s music seems, lyrically, all about romance and love. Not just that—a lot of music is about love—but about these fairytale and juvenile ideas about romance. I am twenty-five, so, quite naturally, life crushed all of that nonsense out of my head about a decade ago. Her refusal to accept the reality that love and relationships do not happen like they do in vintage Disney films does not appeal to me.

So, have you guys read this brilliant post by the lovely Emily on Evil Beet? Read it. Also, read the comments. Oh my goodness. (Also, I have no idea if ForgetWhatSimonSays is a reference to me or to something else. It’s presumptuous to assume that some crankypants named his or her commenting identity after me, though, right?)

My favorite of the comments is definitely from Mireee, who is one of my favorite commenters on Evil Beet, period. “Fucking hell, so she and her friends don’t even pass the Bechdel Test when they’re together.” I died. Too funny. And too accurate.

Talking about boys is one thing. Only talking about boys, with all of your friends? I do not understand Taylor Swift. And maybe I am not meant to.

Of the people whom I know, her fans tend to be girls and gay guys with very Southern leanings in terms of their senses of identity (especially gay friends from scarily small towns). Also, often but not always, concepts of highly improbable runaway romances fill their minds. These people enjoy the feelings that I have long since buried, and I will not begrudge them for it.

She comes from a different world than I do, and so do her fans. That world does not exist, but I guess that they enjoy it. I can sit back and ignore it, even if I am always disgusted when people romanticize the 1950s.

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Flak From Memorial Day Posts Made Some Interesting (and Probably Unintended) Points

photo of soldier saluting the american flag in the desert

Things got very interesting in our little internet world on the subject of Memorial Day.

Selfishly, I was very relieved to get an e-mail telling me to pig out on red meat and drink a lot of beer and not even think about writing.  It’s that time of year when I’m trying to get all the grading I’ve procrastinated on finished up while writing final exams and trying to get the final edition of the student newspaper published and … well, you get it.

From the official Zelda Lily post:

We’re taking a day off from ZL today so we can celebrate the fallen who served us nobly in defending America’s freedom.

Take the day to enjoy, eat lots of over-processed red meat, eat enough corn on the cob to make the next few days, uh, interesting, and indulge in celebrating with friends and family.

The coolest part is that, when one commenter, questioned the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day, another commenter provided the answer.  Our audience is just great—they look out for each other and really interact with the site in a (mostly) positive way.

“Memorial Day is a day for remembering and honoring personnel who died in the service of their country, particularly those who died in battle or as a result of wounds sustained in battle.”

While those who died are also remembered, Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL those who served honorably in the military – in wartime or peacetime.”

Evil Beet had a similar post:

We’re taking the day off around here to enjoy the start of summer. We assume you’re doing the same, and we’re sad for the people (you know who you are) who are spending their day off trolling around a site like this leaving mean comments. Get outside and drink some beer and try saying that shit to someone’s face for a change.

We’ll catch y’all Tuesday.

The comment thread?  It really kind of scared me. 
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