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I am a dedicated and ambitious aspiring freelance journalist, blogger, and writer. My main asset is my international background - I was born in Germany, then moved to France, and proceeded to grow up in China - and the cultural open-mindedness inherent to such a life story. I specialize in opinion pieces, but am also well-versed in travel/event reporting, and writing general news stories. I blog regularly on my two pages, and have contributed to multiple online publications, including Gonzo Today, a web page dedicated to Hunter S. Thompson's "gonzo" journalism and his legacy. If you have any writing needs, I am the right person to talk to! I will be able to match the tone and style you desire, will work overtime to make you happy, and will deliver high quality content. You can find me on Facebook and LinkedIn as "Mark Linnhoefer", and on Twitter as "@markalinnhoefer". For work proposals please feel free to use the contact form on either of my blogs!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Food For Thought #5

“...most men and women will grow up to love their servitude and will never dream of revolution.”            - Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
Well, I am once again in doubt about anything related to social intertwining, and in delay in regard to my own personal deadline, but no-one is really buying that I am actually trying to stick to that anymore, are they?
I mean, I can have as many good reasons as I want to, the fact of the matter remains that I have not stuck to a deadline since like, forever. Except in the first few weeks when I posted almost daily. But well, I'm lazy. And busy. Bad combination to begin with, but try cramming a blog into that. Still I feel that I have a certain obligation to post at least close to my deadline on here, seeing as I have by now established somewhat of a readership I hope, and I am not one to disappoint. So, here I am again, typing on my broken laptop abusing the WiFi of my favorite Coffee-shop. But whatever. You've heard that a thousand times by now. Not anymore in the near future though, seeing as my internet at home has finally been installed and I am now able to procrastinate even more using the convenient method of online streaming. What a wonderful world. I will probably have some government henchman knocking at my door soon enough to get his hands on all the filthy copyright infringements I have stacked up in my time. Fuck that though, it's not like he'd actually find anything of relevance. Or even of enough illegality to sue me. At least not digitally that is. 

Hah. I should quit this line of thought, the internet is crawling with parasitic law enforcement trying to grab whatever tiny piece of supposedly illegal activities their dirty little paws can reach. And I am no mood to have these assholes on my back. And well, there's a little something called "Freedom of speech" and an additional bonus of "artistic liberties" I can take. So fuck you very much, whatever government control-freak is reading this.
Anyway. My mind is drifting between topics, and I cannot for the life of me decide which one to pick for today's Food For Thought segment. Which is by the way something I haven't done in quite a while compared to the regularity in which the last four of these posts appeared, so I decided to have a go at it once again. I actually had a topic in mind when I started typing, but I am unsure now that I've typed a couple of words. My uncertainty regarding my choice of a topic stems from the variety of themes that are offered to me by my surroundings on a daily basis. I'm at times literally so overwhelmed with bullshit that I cannot even decide what to rant about here. Asides from the crazy shit that's going on in Europe whilst the masses are so focused on the world cup that they're barely noticing it. Russia is stopping its delivery of gas to the Ukraine, but that news is drowning in a tsunami of world cup frenzy that has taken hold of every major news station in the country it appears. But well, that's their problem. It is possible to stay informed and those who fail to do so can put the blame entirely on themselves. Not that this tangent has anything to do with the actual topic, I am just filling the time I need to come up with just that. And it's working. To some extent.

I think I will discuss the frightening way in which we're slowly moving towards total governmental control of the masses. Which is not a new topic by any means, I've gone down at least parts of that road in earlier posts, but what's been going on lately on this piece-of-shit of a planet is really angst-inducing to say the least. I mean, we've had the NSA-scandal. But has that really spawned any actual laws restricting this institution or have any actual punishments been laid on those responsible for invading every single fucking citizens privacy? Nope. And it goes on. Snowden is up for prosecution by the U.S.-government whose very foundation he was trying to preserve by exposing the fucked up spying methods of these primates with way too much power in their paw-like hands; the NSA has secret surveillance bunkers in Central Europe; and the German constitutional court has been working together with these spies in order to gather private data on German politicians and the German people themselves. And as if that was not bad enough, that very same court has declared that it is of "vital importance" to further develop methods to listen in on any kind of electronic communication because the internet is considered an "uncontrollable hub of political extremeism" and so-called "cyber-terrorism". These fears obviously rightly justify the invasion of millions of peoples' privacy. Right. 
But it doesn't stop at that. The NSA has been working on a quantum-based PC that will allegedly be able to crack any kind of encryption. So as soon as this project is completed, you can encrypt and secure your messages and data as much as you want - the US will be able to crack the code and read your mail - even if you're just writing your Aunt that her cupcakes were "the bomb". Oh and that Facebook etc. are using user data quite liberally is no secret or surprise to anyone anymore. We're essentially constantly being monitored and watched. This is Big Brother on a global scale. Or much rather, it is the slow realization of what Orwell's 1984 had predicted a long time ago. We've reached 1984. We're already past it actually. Not only is our physical motion being tracked, our thoughts and beliefs are also checked against a government-issue blueprint and if you don't fit, you're disposed of. "Fixed" or "rehabilitated" as they like to call it. But it's actually a systematic disposal and/or brainwashing of those opposed to the state of total submission to the government that those in power are striving to achieve within the population. Doesn't this sound familiar? Total acceptance of the system of those in power, only selective access to information, and government-standardized conformity? Sounds like a bad mixture of 1984 and Huxley's Brave New World. And indeed, it also sounds familiar because I've approached this, or an at least similar aspect ultimately resulting in this topic in earlier posts. But apparently just writing about it doesn't help. The people in power will constantly change, but in the end it all comes down to the same exact mess that is being laid upon us by some corporate puppets. And the puppeteers are the same as always, the usual suspects: huge-ass industries, banks, and oil-sheiks. They're the ones controlling the worlds most important resources, they're funding the worlds governments, and they're therefore also controlling them. This is not some lunatic bullshit like the Illuminati-fad that has swept the nation after the Dan Brown novels were released, but much rather just a careful conclusion made from a few years of watching, listening, and reading. If you have half a brain and a semi-functional mind you'll be able to piece it together yourself. Most politicians are actually part of supervisory or administrative boards of major industrial and financial players, so their decisions are obviously biased towards what's favorable for aforementioned firms. And that alone should be fucking illegal if you ask me. But well, as always, money will prevail. And prevailed it has. Iraq/Contra; Iraq/Syria; Osama Bin Ladens weapons; Richard Nixon; all fraudulent, dangerous, and/or criminal activities that all only happened because of money's evil fucking influence on peoples' minds, behaviors, and decisions. And the list goes on and on, I am just citing some examples that have recently caught my attention, most of them in the works of Hunter S. Thompson. 
But what do we conclude from this mess that the world's offering us? How do we go on knowing that some control-hungry motherfucker is constantly watching our moves, evaluating our thoughts? Well. Personally I have always found solace in the fact that albeit being able to monitor my thoughts, they still lack the ability to actually control them. They might be able to direct them by printing falsified news stories etc., but if your frontal lobe capacity exceeds that of a common single-cell organism you'll be able to find out what's actually going on by doing just a little bit of research. And well, if your privacy is important to you, you know the obvious steps: don't log into Facebook when you're on the move, turn off your GPS and mobile networks, and simply don't use any form of internet-based communication when you're doing something you don't want people finding out about. Further, encrypt your data as long as it still makes sense to do so, and delete metadata of pictures that you don't want to be traced back to the place of their taking.
But I am not here to lecture you on online safety. You should know these things yourself. And this tangent seems somewhat off-topic in retrospect anyway.
No, the actual conclusion, besides finding solace in the fact that you're still in charge of your own thoughts, are that we need to defy the fucking system that creates this somber 1984 control we're being subjected to. How the fuck can governments be claiming to be acting in the interest of their people when they're the only ones their people need to be afraid of nowadays? I mean, let's look at my favorite example: the prohibition of psychoactive substances. Drug users need not fear the possible side-effects of the recreational enhancement they're taking part in, but only the repressive governmental organs trying to put them into a confined space with rapists, murderers, and all other kinds of sick fucked-up people. If the government truly cared about the people, they'd legalize and regulate those substances, and put more effort into preventative actions. But no, that would be "immoral". Funny, that the people making the most depraved and morally-bankrupt decisions on this planet are the ones telling us we can't smoke a joint because it is morally wrong? What the fuck? Politicians are willingly deceiving us for money and power, are engaging in war with countries that did not call for it purely out of monetary and influential reasons, and then have the fucking nerve to call drug users criminals? For fuck's sake, in what kind of a fucked-up nightmare are we living anyway? I mean I understand the basic human need for happiness. And as long as the human is kept in blissful ignorance, an emotional state resembling just that is achieved. Add the exploitation of the natural fear for hunger and loss of shelter to that, and you've got the explanation for peoples' blind acceptance of their leaders' fascist methods. We don't want the truth, because we like our comfort zone to remain just that. Comfortable, cozy, and not disturbed by any nuisances such as a fight for freedom. We've got what we need: Food, shelter, entertainment. Why ask for more? Why bother trying to be actually free when just serving the mans will is much easier? Well. If you really need me to answer these questions for you, the system has already won and you're hopelessly caught in the grip of their manipulative, controlling network. Still, there's need for a general wake-up call when it comes to our society. Because the dystopian realms of V For Vendetta, Brave New World, and 1984 are slowly moving into a sphere that is getting too close to reality for my taste. We are already slaves to an economic wheel that grinds us down to ever-competing clones, we are slaves to our watches, and helpless in the face of industrial giants controlling the government that we're supposed to be in charge of. So why is nothing happening? What final spark is needed to set off the ticking time bomb that we're supposed to be? "The people shouldn't be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people" as fictional character V so nicely put it. And that statement holds so much truth that has just been lost in our days. We are supposed to be the ones electing and controlling the politicians, they're supposed to be acting at our bidding, and not the other way round. But we can elect whoever the fuck we want nowadays, they'll still move the political landscape in the same direction. And this powerlessness only stems from an overall apathy that has taken hold of mankind. We're not empowered individuals. We're fucking clones working in a mechanical system serving a purpose whose existence we're not even aware of. So please, somebody, anybody just wake me up and tell me I've fallen asleep whilst watching a dystopian movie of sorts. And although I know that that's not going to happen, and that some major shit will have to go down before anything changes, I also realize that I cannot offer a feasible solution to any of these issues. I am after all just some guy in some apartment typing words on a broken laptop, watching Lucky Number Slevin on national TV. A nice movie by the way. But of no concern for this topic...

Anyway. The essential message I am trying to convey here is that we're moving closer and closer to being completely controlled and supervised by governments gone rogue. And that we'll need some sort of major happening before any of that changes. Not meaning that I want you to start attacking government officials and buildings, but rather something like forming a party and working the system to destroy or at least properly reform it from the inside-out. Or at least do something for Fuck's sake!

But it's getting late, and I am getting tired. Plus I am once again not really feeling... well per se. Which is due to some recent turmoil that has once again been throwing me off track lately. Yes, as mentioned in the very first sentences, social intertwining is turning ugly on me once again. Or at least I think so, I am actually simply baffled by some of the things I have been exposed to lately, starting with being ignored leading to being barely contacted then to myself ignoring which did not affect the other party in the least bit. And now everything seems to have reset itself, and all is supposedly right again. Or is it? Am I just mindlessly perpetuating a status quo because I feel that that is the way it should be? Or am I actual still part in a viable symbiosis that enriches both parts within it? And that that is something I actually have to ask myself pretty much says it all, doesn't it? Although I cannot for the life of me imagine that that's the case. I don't want this ship to sink again in order to restart at haven once again like it has a couple of times now already. On the other hand I don't want it to crash and go down forever like the Titanic did either. So I find myself, as usually, at an impasse. Too fucking bad. I am just going to go on and see where this path leads me, I am too exhausted emotionally to keep digging into what I believe to be seeing in this context. If shit happens, I'll notice when it does, no need to have an inner shit-alarm going off at the slightest of farts, to keep that metaphor alive. So I am once again choosing the path of least resistance, like electricity would. Trust me though, in this intertwining this is the best way to go. Things tend to sort themselves out, and albeit knowing this to be untrue in most aspects of life, in this particular case it most definitely is. 
So, I am just going to wait for the banshees to cry for my relationship, and if there's enjoyable time left until that I am looking forward to it, and if not, well, that's just life. As fucking cliche as that fucking phrase is.

But fuck all that. My vocabulary is starting to recede to only swearwords, my eyes are getting heavy, and my thoughts are starting to slowly drift off into a comfortable lull of nothingness... So I hope I managed to open some eyes with this Food For Thought, which I know slightly differed in style when compared to the others. But I kept to the normal underlying concept that has always been present in these entries. And well, I hope I approached these topics, well-known from earlier entries, in an angle that was different enough as to not bore but rather entertain and educate you.
“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—for ever.” - George Orwell, 1984

So, this concludes this Food For Thought which was not overly long but of adequate length I suppose. As expressed above I hope I was still able to entertain you and appeal to your reading aesthetics.
And as always, I'll leave you with some good music: 

Bob Dylan - The Time They Are A Changin' 
-> I chose this version on YouTube for a reason. Because asides from simply being a really cool and nicely melodic song, it also holds some great truths that are also being conveyed in the movie Watchmen which was based on a comic by Alan Moore, the same guy who brought us the original comic for V For Vendetta. And the movies made from these comics are almost equally political and controversial, meaning that if you haven't seen or read either of them, go do so now, and... Enjoy!

Norman Greenbaum - Spirit In The Sky 
-> Well, this gem right here was played at Hunter S. Thompson's funeral, which is pretty damn awesome to say the least. And besides that, the song in itself is really awesome, makes me feel like riding a motorcycle at high speed whilst high on speed down some lonely-ass motorway in the American countryside... Never done that before, but that feels like the kind of song to do it to, so... Enjoy!

Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa - Young, Wild & Free 
-> Blablabla, mainstream, too often heard, blablablabla, save it! This right here is the first Weed song that has been nominated for a fucking Grammy award. And that is a huge fucking accomplishment if you ask me. Besides from that, I frigging love Snoop, and also enjoy Wiz Khalifa's work, so this by now classic tune needed featuring on here, and well the timeless carpe diem message it delivers obviously speaks to me, so... Enjoy!

Jay-Z - 99 Problems 
-> If you're reading from Germany, this song (like some others in previous posts) will not be accessible to you due to some fucked up people with no life working for a bloodsucking parasite called "GEMA". Well, fuck them I say. "unblockyoutube.ws" (Have Adblock installed before accessing this page!!). And you're good to go. Besides that, I cannot believe I have not had this song on here before, and well - it's a classic tune full of humorous lines, with a political nudge here and there, and an awesome catchy pre-hook line: "I got 99 problems but a bitch ain't one!"... Enjoy!

Secoya - Run 
-> "Old but gold" seems to be UKF's policy for its latest uploads, but I like it! Epically vocalized track with awesome drops and nice melodic goodness in it! I love this synthesized voice combining with electronic melodies leading to drops of epic proportions, and UKF is a constant source of just that! Awesome upload by them, great artist, great track, great everything basically! Just an awesome tune, so... Enjoy!

Eptic - Space Cats
-> Once again UKF does not fail to fucking amaze me! This song is so fucking filthy and awesome, I can barely find the words to describe it. An interesting melody, coupled with a hard-hitting bass that is playing Frisbee with the remains of my burned-off ears... Just grand, grand music, from a great artist, uploaded by the greatest channel for Dubstep music on the web! I am getting this tingling sensation in my stomach when I listen to this, which means that I am going to listen to this so much that I can't stand hearing it anymore... Enjoy!

Well, this turned out to be rather jumpy, erratic and shallow for a Food For Thought segment, but well I do hope it still holds some value for you and did not bore you to death. I am just happy I managed to finish this thing now, and would once again like to extend my apologies to you guys for taking eleven days to actually post again... But well, seeing as my internet at home is back up, I might get around to posting more regularly in the near future! 
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this FFT and are a little smarter because of it, or were at least enticed to rethink a couple of things, you know the deal...


Peace!

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I have a thick skin, so go ahead if you feel like criticizing, but if you keep going on and on about details of carnal relations you claim to have had with my mother your comment will be removed.
I guess what I'm saying is that you can express your opinion, just try to do so in a constructive or at least moderately respectful manner, otherwise the comment section is just going to go to shit and I'll be forced to close it, seeing as I will definitely not be moderating it if unwanted/spam/bullshit comments keep coming...
If you can not behave, the possibility of commenting here will disappear, that's as simple as it is.