Archive for December, 1999
Most people will tell you that religion is a buyer’s market today. With the media explosion we’ve seen over the last few years, today’s buyer has more places to spend his or her faith than ever before. Cable TV, low power UHF stations, AM radio, the internet…everywhere you turn, there’s someone ready to tell you what to believe. But I’m here to tell you that as we approach the beginning of a new millenium, there are huge segments of the market woefully unserved by any of the beliefs currently on the market. And if you’re one of those folks feeling left out, I’d like to extend an offer to you:
The Alien Jesus IPO
“But Ed, who ever heard of a religion offering an IPO?”
I’m glad you asked! IPO stands for Initial Public Offering. Let’s break it down and see exactly what it means. Webster’s Dictionary defines initial as “of or relating to the beginning.” Public means just that; we’re making Alien Jesus available to the public at large, regardless of who or what you are. An offering is to put something up for bid or sale, or to make a sacrifice. When you look at it this way, what we’re doing is giving everyone the opportunity to buy into a belief system and make a new beginning in their lives.
“Sounds great Ed, but what does it cost?”
I’m glad you asked! Most beliefs out there require ALL of your faith ALL the time! Who can afford that? With so many demands upon your faith today, it’s hard to spare much for anything. Alien Jesus recognizes this pitfall, and after a great deal of study and market research, we’ve developed an entirely new model for religious belief: Faith based on free market economics! Spiritual supply and demand – the free market at work! Based on the amount of Alien Jesus we have in stock, you can buy into our IPO for a mere 3% of your total available faith!
“But Ed, I’m not sure if I’m in the market for a religion today. How long do you think this offer will last?”
It all depends on the market. Past performance should not be taken as an indicator of future accuracy in any belief system, be it Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, or other. What I can tell you is this: buying into a religion early is the best way to insure your future status. When the time comes to appoint Deacons, Bishops, Witch Doctors, Saints, or whatever, who do you think will get the job? It’s not going to be the Johnny-convert-lately who just got religion last Thursday! The rabidly devout follower who’s been hanging around since the early days is best positioned to advance through the ranks. And that’s what makes the Alien Jesus IPO such an attractive offer!
“All right Ed, I’m convinced! What do I do next?”
To get in on this IPO, just follow these three easy steps:
The inevitable march of evolution
Lancelot Link at home in Malibu
Plato in a reflective mood
Limp Bizkit singer Fred Durst spies a quarter on the sidewalk and considers saving it for when his 15 minutes of fame are over
There’s a troubling notion taking hold in some circles that the age of Darwin has passed. Man has vanquished each and every predator the Earth has thrown at him. Technology has insulated us from any natural impetus towards further evolution. We’ve painted ourselves into a corner where natural selection no longer applies. Well I beg to differ with these pessimistic pundits: The evolution of man continues on today!
Beginning on the day our ancestors crawled out of the primordial ooze, we have faced a constant struggle for survival, just like any other species. Among the mammals, some survived because of their strength, others by their speed. The Neanderthal had two things going for him: his opposable thumb, and his massive brain. These things have carried us from the Stone Age to the Atomic Age, and have allowed us to decimate all opposition to our primacy on Earth. There are scores of animals that are faster, stronger, more rugged than man, but all of them now live by our grace. Those who have gotten in our way have been culled, driven out, or even exterminated. But without those predators, what forces remain to impose natural selection upon humanity?
Consider the trends that have been with us since the dawn of civilization. Murder rates and violent crime have increased steadily. Antibiotics are losing their effectiveness. The world is changing in a big way. There are 6 billion of us on this planet now, all jockeying for position. These trends are symptomatic of the greatest predator man faces now: himself.
Unlike some, I don’t see mankind destroying himself as a species. The natural imperative for survival is strong, and man is far more adaptable than he sometimes realizes. Our lives are very short in the context of the universe, and a worst case scenario that sets us back 300 years is only a blip on the screen when you consider how many billion years it took to get to this point. People tend to look at time in terms they can understand; for them, the world will exist for about 5 generations. It began somewhere during their grandparents’ lifetimes, and will end with their grandchildren. The rest is merely an abstraction. When you look at it from this perspective, evolution becomes so intangible that it’s virtually meaningless to those who merely try to live their lives in the here and now.
So what are the possibilities for the future? What awaits us around the next bend in the road? I see several factors that will push mankind over the evolutionary precipice: Environmental pressures will be one of the keys to transforming humanity. The earth is changing at an accelerating pace. Man has been locked in a constant struggle with the elements since the dawn of time, and that struggle continues today. The only difference is one of scale. Where we once struggled to find shelter from the storm on an individual or tribal level, we now battle nature on a global scale. Dams and levies stand ready to hold back the rising tides, and the first sign of famine mobilizes international efforts to combat it. The planet is changing, and if we aren’t careful it will change into a much less hospitable place.
These harsh conditions could very well be the catalyst for biological changes in man as he adapts to a new environment. Space travel has gone from science fiction to routine fact in a mere 40 years. Over the next century, man will explore other planets, and perhaps choose to colonize them. These colonists will be one of the great evolutionary experiments of the next millennium. Life on another world will have profound effects upon their physiology, and if they can adapt to their new homes, it will be the greatest evolutionary leap since Cro-Magnon man gave way to Homo sapiens. The Computer Revolution offers some very interesting possibilities for human evolution. Great hordes of people living in the developed world spend eight or more hours a day in front of a computer terminal now, and there are sure to be mutations brought on by this.
As the field of Cybernetics advances, it may become possible for man to actually engineer his own evolution. Imagine having a computer inside your head, with all the processing power available to you any time, any place. Now imagine a child who has had that power since birth. To him, the use of computer implants would be as natural as breathing. Over the course of several generations, the magnitude of this change will become even more apparent, and people will one day look back upon this step as one of the biggest in human development, ranking up there with tools, agriculture, flight, and splitting the atom. These and other changes we can’t even begin to imagine will insure our continued development as a species.
So to those of you who say that man’s evolution has come to an end, I have a simple request: please step aside and let the rest of us get on with the business of realizing our full potential.
The recent rediscovery of Hitler’s bunker in downtown Berlin offers an historic opportunity for the German people and history buffs alike. Unfortunately, the Germans are prepared to squander this opportunity for fear of Neo-Nazis using the Fuhrerbunker as a shrine or a rallying point. Even though the Nazis were soundly defeated more than half a century ago, the forces of facism have never completely gone away in West Germany, and the facism of the right was replaced by the facism of the left in East Germany. So how can we support their vigilance against Neo-Nazis while allowing the public an opportunity to see a true landmark of 20th century history? Disney has been considering a second EuroDisney park. Why not build an exact replica of Hitler’s Bunker as one of the attractions? They could send in a crack team of architects, engineers, and historians to survey the real bunker, fill the original in with concrete, and build a perfect replica in their new park. Being a replica, it wouldn’t hold the same appeal for skinheads that the original has, and locating it in a Disney park would allow for the tightest security known to modern man. Disney’s animatronic technology would allow visitors to see and hear the key players in the underground drama acting out their final hours. Disney could even indulge their peccadillo for adding music to everything by licensing music from Mel Brooks’ 1967 film “The Producers”. Or if they feel the need to make it more contemporary, they could commission Michael Jackson to write some new tunes for the attraction. He could probably use a few bucks to cover that divorce settlement, and Europeans have always been more tolerant of men who like young boys. The vision of an animatronic Hitler belting out songs in the voice of Michael Jackson would definitely drive away any neo-Nazis who slip through security. If the Disney alternative proves to be unworkable, another option is Las Vegas. With the proliferations of casinos like New York NY and Paris, a Berlin casino would fit right in. A stage show with Marlene Dietrich impersonators, a Kraftwerk tribute band in the lounge, and a bunker replica in the basement. There’s a real opportunity waiting here for some entrepeneur to map out the bunker and recreate it in the American Southwest. The opportunity we have to bring history to life must not be lost! If you feel as we do about this, please take the time to write Disney and lasvegas.com to make your opinion known. Together, we can make a difference!
Wal-Mart greeters? No, Georgia death row inmates Jack Alfred Bennett and Johnny Gates
The Georgia Department of Corrections is offering a wonderful new service. Their new web page gives access to the state of Georgia’s complete database of convicts. Everyone who’s done time in Georgia during the last 30 or 40 years is included, searchable by name, institution where incarcerated, or even by offense. Many of the offenders even have a photo posted! I think its great that Georgia is making an effort to use the internet as a rehabilitation tool. The next logical step is to allow inmates to post a resume on the site when they are nearing release. Employers looking for cheap ex-con labor would be able to search the site and locate the perfect person for any position:
If you’re into the pictures, search for everyone under death sentence. Most of the death row guys rate a large picture. Someone should put together some trading cards of these guys. The site is also a cool place to learn about crimes you just don’t think about every day. Barratry, bastardy, embracery, instigating mutiny, insurrection, intermarriage with close kin, necrophilia, violation of bingo rules…the list goes on and on. Unfortunately, many criminal categories don’t have any offenders listed. A search for necrophiliacs yields no results! Someone needs to institute some sort of affirmative action program to make sure that all categories have at least one convict in them. Maybe the Justice Department could institute some sort of bussing system to move necrophiliacs from the midwestern “corpse belt” states to other states where the the lovers of the dead are kept out by fear and prejudice. If you feel as I do, please email Al Gore and tell him you want him to make necrophiliac bussing one of his campaign planks in 2000.
My only concern is that some obsessive compulsive sociopath will see the list of crimes on the site and use it as a personal checklist that must be completed at all costs. When captured, he or she will claim to have gotten the idea from the internet, unleashing a flood of news stories describing the profound threat posed to white American society by the internet. If I catch anybody causing more of this crap to flood MY television, I’ll haul you off to Georgia and get my name listed with the Department of Corrections for murder AND necrophilia.