Scanlyze

The Online Journal of Insight, Satire, Desire, Wit and Observation

Islamic State hacks Niantic; Pokeclypse ensues

Islamic State hacks Niantic; Pokeclypse ensues.

Tens of thousands of people have died following an ongoing series of cyber-attacks on the makers of Pokemon Go, Niantic.

Mass casualties have been reported at bridges, dams, and waterfalls, with ongoing rescue operations in progress throughout the world. Hundreds of thousands are reported missing, with many lost in underground cavern systems such as Carlsbad Caverns, Mammoth Cave, and Lechuguilla Cave.

Humans have been seen jumping with the lemmings in western Canada, trying to navigate Niagara Falls with their iphones, and drowning in the English Channel.

Massive rescue efforts are still underway, notably to free the thousands still trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits.

350px-008a

Copyright © 2016 Henry Edward Hardy

5 August, 2016 Posted by | satire, scanlyze | , , , , | Leave a comment

Here’s to the State of Arizona

Here’s to the State of Arizona (with thanks to Phil Ochs):

May be sung to the tune of “Here’s to the State of Mississippi” aka “Here’s to the State of Richard Nixon”:

Here’s to the state of Arizona,
For Underneath her borders, the devil draws no lines,
If you drag her dusty desert, nameless bodies you will find.
Whoa the fat trees of the forest have hid a thousand crimes,
The calender is lyin’ when it reads the present time.
Whoa here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of,
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of!

Here’s to the people of Arizona
Who say the folks up north, they just don’t know respect
And they tremble in their shadows at the thunder of Glen Beck
The sweating of their souls can’t wash the blood from off their hands
They smile and shrug their shoulders at the shooting of a Congressman
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

Here’s to the schools of Arizona
Where they’re teaching all the children that they don’t have to care
All of rudiments of hatred are present everywhere
And every single classroom is a factory of despair
There’s nobody learning such a socialist word as “fair”
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

Here’s to the cops of Arizona
They’re chewing their tobacco as they lock the prison door
Their bellies bounce inside them as they knock you to the floor
No they don’t like taking prisoners in their private little war
Behind their broken badges there are murderers and more
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

And, here’s to the judges of Arizona
Who wear the robe of honor as they crawl into the court
They’re guarding all the bastions with their phony legal fort
Oh, justice is a stranger when the prisoners report
When a Mexican stands accused the trial is always short
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

And here’s to the government of Arizona
In the swamp of their bureaucracy they’re always bogging down
And criminals are posing as the mayors of the towns
They’re hoping that no one sees the sights and hears the sounds
And the speeches of the governor are the ravings of a clown
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

And here’s to the laws of Arizona
Congressmen will gather in a circus of delay
While the Constitution is drowning in an ocean of decay
Immigrant mothers should be sterilized, I’ve even heard them say
Yes, corruption can be classic in the Arizona way
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of

And here’s to the churches of Arizona
Where the cross, once made of silver, now is caked with rust
And the Sunday morning sermons pander to their lust
The fallen face of Jesus is choking in the dust
Heaven only knows in which God they can trust
Oh, here’s to the land you’ve torn out the heart of
Arizona find yourself another country to be part of
 

Copyright © 2011 Henry Edward Hardy

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16 January, 2011 Posted by | Arizona, assassination, politics, satire, scanlyze | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The War Prayer by Mark Twain

The War Prayer

(part II)

courtesy, thewarprayer.com

film by Markos Kounalakis
illustrations: Akis Dimitrakopoulos
voiced by: Peter Coyote, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and Erik Bauersfeld

The War Prayer

By Mark Twain
c. 1904
public domain

It was a time of great and exalting excitement. The country was up in arms, the war was on, in every breast burned the holy fire of patriotism; the drums were beating, the bands playing, the toy pistols popping, the bunched firecrackers hissing and sputtering; on every hand and far down the receding and fading spreads of roofs and balconies a fluttering wilderness of flags flashed in the sun; daily the young volunteers marched down the wide avenue gay and fine in their new uniforms, the proud fathers and mothers and sisters and sweethearts cheering them with voices choked with happy emotion as they swung by; nightly the packed mass meetings listened, panting, to patriot oratory which stirred the deepest deeps of their hearts and which they interrupted at briefest intervals with cyclones of applause, the tears running down their cheeks the while; in the churches the pastors preached devotion to flag and country and invoked the God of Battles, beseeching His aid in our good cause in outpouring of fervid eloquence which moved every listener.

It was indeed a glad and gracious time, and the half dozen rash spirits that ventured to disapprove of the war and cast a doubt upon its righteousness straightway got such a stern and angry warning that for their personal safety’s sake they quickly shrank out of sight and offended no more in that way.

Sunday morning came-next day the battalions would leave for the front; the church was filled; the volunteers were there, their faces alight with material dreams-visions of a stern advance, the gathering momentum, the rushing charge, the flashing sabers, the flight of the foe, the tumult, the enveloping smoke, the fierce pursuit, the surrender!-then home from the war, bronzed heros, welcomed, adored, submerged in golden seas of glory! With the volunteers sat their dear ones, proud, happy, and envied by the neighbors and friends who had no sons and brothers to send forth to the field of honor, there to win for the flag or, failing, die the noblest of noble deaths. The service proceeded; a war chapter from the Old Testament was read; the first prayer was said; it was followed by an organ burst that shook the building, and with one impulse the house rose, with glowing eyes and beating hearts, and poured out that tremendous invocation — “God the all-terrible! Thou who ordainest, Thunder thy clarion and lightning thy sword!”

Then came the “long” prayer. None could remember the like of it for passionate pleading and moving and beautiful language. The burden of its supplication was that an ever–merciful and benignant Father of us all would watch over our noble young soldiers and aid, comfort, and encourage them in their patriotic work; bless them, shield them in His mighty hand, make them strong and confident, invincible in the bloody onset; help them to crush the foe, grant to them and to their flag and country imperishable honor and glory –

An aged stranger entered and moved with slow and noiseless step up the main aisle, his eyes fixed upon the minister, his long body clothed in a robe that reached to his feet, his head bare, his white hair descending in a frothy cataract to his shoulders, his seamy face unnaturally pale, pale even to ghastliness. With all eyes following him and wondering, he made his silent way; without pausing, he ascended to the preacher’s side and stood there, waiting.

With shut lids the preacher, unconscious of his presence, continued his moving prayer, and at last finished it with the words, uttered in fervent appeal,”Bless our arms, grant us the victory, O Lord our God, Father and Protector of our land and flag!”

The stranger touched his arm, motioned him to step aside — which the startled minister did — and took his place. During some moments he surveyed the spellbound audience with solemn eyes in which burned an uncanny light; then in a deep voice he said

“I come from the Throne-bearing a message from Almighty God!” The words smote the house with a shock; if the stranger perceived it he gave no attention. “He has heard the prayer of His servant your shepherd and grant it if such shall be your desire after I, His messenger, shall have explained to you its import-that is to say, its full import. For it is like unto many of the prayers of men, in that it asks for more than he who utters it is aware of-except he pause and think.

“God’s servant and yours has prayed his prayer. Has he paused and taken thought? Is it one prayer? No, it is two- one uttered, the other not. Both have reached the ear of His Who hearth all supplications, the spoken and the unspoken. Ponder this-keep it in mind. If you beseech a blessing upon yourself, beware! lest without intent you invoke a curse upon a neighbor at the same time. If you pray for the blessing of rain upon your crop which needs it, by that act you are possibly praying for a curse upon some neighbor’s crop which may not need rain and can be injured by it.

“You have heard your servant’s prayer-the uttered part of it. I am commissioned by God to put into words the other part of it-that part which the pastor, and also you in your hearts, fervently prayed silently. And ignorantly and unthinkingly? God grant that it was so! You heard these words: ‘Grant us the victory, O Lord our God!’ That is sufficient. The whole of the uttered prayer is compact into those pregnant words. Elaborations were not necessary. When you have prayed for victory you have prayed for many unmentioned results which follow victory-must follow it, cannot help but follow it. Upon the listening spirit of God the Father fell also the unspoken part of the prayer. He commandeth me to put it into words. Listen!

“O Lord our Father, our young patriots, idols of our hearts, go forth to battle-be Thou near them! With them, in spirit, we also go forth from the sweet peace of our beloved firesides to smite the foe. O Lord our God, help us to tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their patriot dead; help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of their wounded, writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes with a hurricane of fire; help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending widows with unavailing grief; help us to turn them out roofless with their little children to wander unfriended the wastes of their desolated land in rags and hunger and thirst, sports of the sun flames of summer and the icy winds of winter, broken in spirit, worn with travail, imploring Thee for the refuge of the grave and denied it-for our sakes who adore Thee, Lord, blast their hopes, blight their lives, protract their bitter pilgrimage, make heavy their steps, water their way with their tears, stain the white snow with the blood of their wounded feet! We ask it, in the spirit of love, of Him Who is the Source of Love, and Who is ever-faithful refuge and friend of all that are sore beset and seek His aid with humble and contrite hearts. Amen.

(After a pause)

“Ye have prayed it; if ye still desire it, speak! The messenger of the Most High waits.”

It was believed afterward that the man was a lunatic, because there was no sense in what he said.

Scanlyze: This bitter short story is in line with Twain’s later dark and ironic writing, particularly The Mysterious Stranger. It is rather more reminiscent of the writings of Ambrose Bierce than of Twain’s earlier, better known works such as Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Of The War Prayer, Twain reportedly said,

I don’t think the prayer will be published in my time. None but the dead are permitted to tell the truth.

The War Prayer was written in response to the US invasion of the Phillipines during the Spanish-American War, an imperialistic war in many ways not dissimilar from the US invasion of Iraq 104 years later. I wonder if Twain was not inspired by the first chapter of Isaiah:

And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.
Isaiah 1:15

Oh yes, did I forget to yell, “Support the Troops!”

USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!

Mark Twain (wikipedia)
The War Prayer (2006) (IMDB) — note, this is a different film than the one above
Lawrence Ferlinghetti (wikipedia)
Peter Coyote (wikipedia)
Ambrose Bierce (wikipedia)

See also: A Marine’s Poem leads to US Representative David Obey’s anti-liberal tirade
I Dreamed I saw Joe Hill Last Night
Harold Pinter receives Legion D’Honneur
Anthem for Doomed Youth

Copyright © 2007 Henry Edward Hardy

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7 September, 2007 Posted by | Afghanistan, Akis Dimitrakopoulos, Ambrose Bierce, bible, Erik Bauersfeld, film, hypocrisy, Iraq, isaiah, justice, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, literature, movie, peace, Peter Coyote, Phillipines, politics, prayer, Samuel Clemens, satire, scanlyze, short story, slaughter, Spanish-American War, support the troops, USA, war, War Prayer | | 4 Comments

US declares ‘War on Love’; France invaded

US declares ‘War on Love’; France invaded

President denounces France, Italy, Brazil as “Axis of Love”

Ann Arbor
2007-03-15 17:41:00 UCT

by Henry Edward Hardy

US President-for-Life George W. Bush today declared war on France, saying:

“We have fought the War on Terror, and been victorious. Today nobody dares to be scared of anything, no matter how bad it may be.

“But our task is not done. There is another, even stronger emotion which represents a threat to our nation. I am referring to ‘loverism’. Our war on love begins with France, but it does not end there. We will pursue the loverists wherever they may seek to spread their deadly loverism.

“He (Jacques Chirac) is what we would call a prime suspect … If he thinks he can hide from the United States, and our allies, he will be sorely mistaken.”

Bush said that military operations against France were continuing as he spoke, although he acknowledged that, “France had surrendered before our troops had arrived,” he added that the French had deployed a secret weapon labeled WMD, or “Women of Massive Doudounes.”

“Our troops are taking hold of the situation with both hands, and we expect them to be victorious before sunrise,” said the President.

Regarding France, Italy, and Brazil, Mr. Bush said,

“States like these, and their loverist allies, constitute an axis of love, disrobing to threaten the war-loving people of the world. By seeking women of massive doudounes, these regimes raise a hard and growing danger. They could provide these women to loverists, giving them the means to match their affections. They could seduce our allies or attempt to blackmail the United States. In any of these cases, the price of indifference would be catastrophic.”

Invest in deadly weapons
And those little cotton flags
Invest in wooden caskets
In guns and body bags

You´re invested in oppression
Investing in corruption
Invest in every tyranny
And the whole world´s destruction…

There´s a war on our democracy
A war on our dissent
There´s a war inside religion
And what Jesus might have meant

There´s a war on mother nature
A war upon the seas
There´s a war upon the forests
On the birds and the bees

There´s a war on education
A war on information
A war between the sexes
And every nation

A war on our compassion
A war on understanding
A war on love and life itself
It´s war that they´re demanding…

Sting, This War

Copyright © 2007 Henry Edward Hardy

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15 March, 2007 Posted by | Brazil, Bush, doudounes, essay, France, humor, Italy, Jacques Chirac, love, lovers, media, military, news, parody, politics, satire, scanlyze, sex, USA, war, War on Love, War on Terror, WMD | Leave a comment