"So we beat on, boats against the current"

"I'm Matthew Germenis, & that's a good book." This English & History major is transplendently enamored with Ingmar Bergman, Woody Allen, Philip Roth, Fiona Apple & Mad Men.

I'll supply you with reviews/comments/appreciation of literature, film, music, history, and my personal amalgamation of Freudian Marxism.



Vintage Super Heroes By: Butcher Billy 


I thought this was really cool….until I came to the image of Magneto and Hitler. Whoever made this couldn’t have made this mistake unless they were absolutely unaware of EVERYTHING concerning Magneto. They had to be, or else how could someone put Magneto essentially dictating alongside Adolf Hitler when Magneto is Jewish. Not only that, but Magneto lost his family in Auschwitz. If it were necessary for the two to share an image for the sake of this project, then it should have been one of Magneto about to drop a fucking bridge on Hitler; something of that nature. But c’mon, homie. Do your homework.

Also, if you really equate Magneto and Adolf Hitler, then you know nothing about what Magneto stands for, or the true horror of Hitler and his regime.

(via innaudiblemelodiess)


"I don’t think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains." — from Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl


"I don’t think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains."
— from Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl

#cats #sink #catsinsink

#cats #sink #catsinsink


April 4, 1968: Martin Luther King, Jr. is assassinated.

The night before his assassination, King delivered his last speech at Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee; popularly known as “I’ve Been to the Mountain”, this speech was made in support of the Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike and called upon the United States to ”be true to what you said on paper”. 

At around 6 PM, King was standing on the balcony outside his room at Memphis’  Lorraine Motel when he was struck by a single bullet through the cheek, fired from a pump-action rifle wielded by James Earl Ray, who shortly afterward fled north to Canada. After being taken to the hospital, King was pronounced dead five minutes after 7. All across the United States, violent riots in Baltimore, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and elsewhere broke out during the week following the assassination, though notably not in Indianapolis, where Robert F. Kennedy, who would be assassinated two months later, delivered arguably his speech informing the city’s residents of King’s death.

The funeral, which took place on April 9, was attended by 300,000 people, and a bill to establish a holiday in his honor was presented in Congress not long after. King’s family, and many others besides, maintain that James Earl Ray (a small-time criminal) was the scapegoat of a conspiracy involving the U.S. government and FBI. It is fact that the FBI’s COINTELPRO closely monitored King’s (and other “subversives’) activities intensely often through illegal or dubious means, such as wiretapping and break-ins. The agency also sent King an anonymous letter urging him to commit suicide. In 1999, King’s family won a civil suit in Memphis in which jurors reached the unanimous verdict that “Loyd Jowers [a restaurant owner in 1968] as well as ”others, including governmental agencies’” had been part of a conspiracy to murder King. 

Partial transcript from the 1999 case

Bottom five photographs from LIFE

(via darknesspast)

Of Mice and X-Men



Who better to play Lennie in Steinbeck’s novel than the gentle giant of organic steel Peter Rasputin a.k.a. Colossus? Kurt Wagner a.k.a. Nightcrawler plays his friend George Milton. Both of these characters have died and returned to life, but that does not make this sun-setting scene any less emotionally fraught. George is going to need a big gun.

Why Evangelical Christians Are Right To Be Angry About 'Noah'

I was going to write a review for Noah, but then I read this. It’s almost everything I was going to say: why you shouldn’t get your panties in a bunch; how I’ve written Tumblr posts longer than Noah’s mentioning in Genesis; the depiction of zealotry, the problem of faith, and the psychomachia portrayed by Crowe; how the film is a Jewish film because the story comes from the Torah, is written/directed by a Jewish filmmaker (Aronosky’s film reads more like Talmud than Biblical epics like Ben-Hur or The Ten Commandments), and concerns itself with the three key themes in Judaism (mercy, justice, atonement). Noah is a masterfully directed work of art, one of the most visually stunning films of the past few years - far surpassing something the likes of Gravity - and makes something terribly relevant out of an ancient tale as foreign to our world as the Martian landscape, or GOP beliefs. Aronofsky’s passion project does more for the importance of environmentalism in the face of Global Warming than Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth could ever hope to accomplish. What is our fate if we continue to rape the Earth of its natural resources and slaughter our colleagues in the wilderness? We’ll wipe ourselves off the face of the planet, and our undoing won’t be carried out by G-d’s forgetting to turn off the bath water, it’ll be our ultimate act of masochism.

And the sequence in which Noah retells the book of Genesis, up to Noah’s entrance, that is, is for certain one of the most awe-inspiring scenes ever committed to film = I was just as stunned, my jaw somewhere close to my ankles, as the first time (every time) I watched 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Tree of Life; referring to the wormhole scene towards the end of 2001 and the birth of the universe in TToL.

Say what you will about the acting - everyone does their part, but Crowe is what counts, and he shines in his best role since, at least, American Gangster or Cinderella Man - or any other aspect of the film *as a film*, but if you let the discrepancies in the translation of Biblical to filmic text prevent you from seeing this, then I pity you. Honestly. It’s a faith-affirming, not a faith-destroying, film, just like Scorsese’s brilliant, unprecedented, and unsurpassed Last Temptation of Christ. The purpose of Noah’s segment in Genesis, of Genesis itself, is to tell a story, to carry a message, that offers us the chance to find a guide (read: G-d(?)) so that we may better ourselves as human beings, regardless of whose image, if any, we were/are/will be created in. We are draconian in our dominion, we disobey, destroy, waste, obsess, and murder, so much murder! (“Mistah Kurtz - he dead”) and yet there’s the notion that something in us is worthy of saving, of not being lost in the flood. Simultaneously we deserve and never will deserve a single second longer under the Sun. But hands dig in the dirt and find one another, soil returning to soil. A word isn’t uttered. Smiles exchanged; forgiveness. Hope. Mercy.

Hab rachmones.

Like father, like son. #cats #Roth

Like father, like son. #cats #Roth

Rewriting (Best Picture/Director) Oscar History*

2013 - Her; Martin Scorsese

2012 - Amour; Ang Lee

2011 - Hugo & Midnight in Paris; Martin Scorsese

2010 - The Social Network; David Fincher & Darren Aronofsky

2009 - Up; Quentin Tarantino

2008 - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; David Fincher

2007 - No Country for Old Men; Coen Bros

2006 - The Departed; Martin Scorsese

2005 - Brokeback Mountain; Ang Lee

2004 - The Aviator; Martin Scorsese

2003 - The Return of the King; Peter Jackson

2002 - The Pianist; Roman Polanski

2001 - A Beautiful Mind; Ron Howard

2000 - Gladiator; Ridley Scott

1999 - American Beauty; Sam Mendes

1998 - Saving Private Ryan; Steven Spielberg

1997 - Good Will Hunting; Gus Van Sant

1996 - The English Patient; Anthony Minghella 

1995 - Il Postino; Michael Radford

1994 - Pulp Fiction; Quentin Tarantino 

1993 - Schindler’s List; Steven Spielberg

1992 - Unforgiven; Clint Eastwood

1991 - The Silence of the Lambs; John Singleton 

1990 - Goodfellas; Martin Scorsese

1989 - Born on the 4th of July; Woody Allen

1988 - Rain Man; Barry Levinson

1987 - The Last Emperor; Bernard Bertolucci

1986 - Hannah and Her Sisters; Woody Allen

1985 - The Color Purple; Akira Kurosawa 

1984 - Amadeus; Milos Forman

1983 - The Right Stuff; Ingmar Bergman

1982 - E.T.; Steven Spielberg

1981 - Raiders of the Lost Ark; Steven Spielberg

1980 - Raging Bull; Martin Scorsese

1979 - Kramer vs. Kramer; Francis Ford Coppola

1978 - The Deer Hunter; Woody Allen

1977 - Annie Hall; Woody Allen

1976 - Taxi Driver; Ingmar Bergman

1975 - One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest; Federico Fellini

1974 - The Godfather Pt. II; F.F. Coppola

1973 - The Exorcist; Ingmar Bergman

1972 - The Godfather; Bob Fosse

1971 - A Clockwork Orange; Stanley Kubrick

1970 - MASH; Robert Altman

1969 - Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid; George Roy Hill

1968 - Funny Girl; Stanley Kubrick

1967 - The Graduate; Mike Nichols

1966 - Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; Claude Lelouch

1965 - Doctor Zhivago; Hiroshi Teshigahara 

1964 - Becket; Stanley Kubrick

1963 - America, America; Federico Fellini

1962 - Lawrence of Arabia; David Lean

1961 - West Side Story; Federico Fellini

1960 - The Apartment; Billy Wilder

1959 - Ben-Hur; Billy Wilder

1958 - Cat on a Hot Tin Roof; Richard Brooks

1957 - 12 Angry Men; Sidney Lumet

1956 - Giant; George Stevens

1955 - Marty; Delbert Mann

1954 - On the Waterfront; Elia Kazan

1953 - From Here to Eternity; Billy Wilder

1952 - High Noon; John Ford

1951 - A Streetcar Named Desire; Elia Kazan

1950 - All About Eve; Joseph L. Mankiewicz  

*Since 1950

8 Accounts of Black People Being Used As Guinea Pigs


Gynecology Invented Through The Torture of Black Women

In the 19th century, the father of modern gynecology, J. Marion Sims, conducted his research experiments on enslaved Black women. Sims performed the invasive and torturous procedures without anesthesia. J. Marion Sims’ justification for choosing not to anesthetize his test subjects was that he did not believe Black women felt pain at all. In an 1857 lecture, he stated that it was “not painful enough to justify the trouble”.

The Tuskegee Experiment

The Tuskegee Institute and the Public Health Service began a study of the natural progression of syphilis involving 600 Black men (399 with syphilis, 201 uninfected) in 1932. The infected men involved in the study were never made aware of their condition upon diagnosis and believed they were being treated for “bad blood”. In exchange for their participation, the men received free medical examinations and burial insurance. They were never treated for the disease. These trials went on until 1972 when the study was exposed by The Associated Press. The remaining victims and their family members won a $10,000,000 reparations settlement which guaranteed them lifetime health coverage and burial insurance.

The Pellagra Incident
Pellagra is an ailment commonly caused by a lack of niacin (vitamin B-13) in the human diet. The symptoms include skin lesions, sunlight sensitivity, dementia and ends in death. At the turn of the twentieth century, millions of people in the United States died from this disease. Scientists claimed that the cause of the disease was a toxin found in corn. In 1915, the U.S. Surgeon General ordered government funded experiments on Black prisoners afflicted with pellagra. Poor diet and niacin deficiency was found to be the cause. However, these life-saving findings were not released to the public until 1935 because the majority of Pellagra-induced deaths affected Black communities.

The Ebb Cade Experiment

In 1945, African-American Ebb Cade, a 53-year-old truck driver, was secretly injected with plutonium, the substance used to make nuclear bombs. After breaking several of his bones in automotible accident, he was rushed to the emergency room. Unbeknownst to Ebb Cade, he was in the care of doctors that were also U.S. Atomic Agency employees. For six months, he was held in the hospital under the belief that they were treating his injuries. During that time, he was injected with more than 40 times the amount of plutonium an average person is exposed to in a lifetime. The doctors and researchers collected bone samples and extracted 15 teeth to monitor the effects of his exposure. Ebb Cade grew suspicious of his broken-bone treatments and escaped from the hospital. Unfortunately, Cade suffered from the brutal effects of intense radiation until he died from heart failure eight years later at the age of 61.

Weaponized Mosquito Experiment

In the early 1950′s, the United States government conducted an experiment to see if mosquitoes could be weaponized. The CIA and the U.S. military released nearly a half million mosquitoes carrying  yellow fever and dengue fever viruses into several Black communities in Florida. In the predominantly Black community of Avon Park, dozens of Black people became ill, eight dying as a result of this government-issued mosquito attack.

Infants Injected With Test Drugs In Los Angeles

In June 1990, more than 1500 six-month old Black and Hispanic babies in Los Angeles were given what seemed to be a standard measles vaccination. The parents were not told that this particular vaccine, Edmonston Zagreb measles vaccine (EZ), was still in its research phase and not approved by the FDA. The EZ vaccine already had a reputation in Senegal, Guinea Bissau and Haiti, triggering an increased death rate among infant girls, most not living past the age of two. The Center for Disease Control would later confess that the infants were injected with an experimental vaccination without their parent’s knowledge. Presently, it is believed that many of these families are still unaware that their babies were used as guinea pigs.

The Toxic Sludge Experiment of Baltimore and St. Louis

In the year 2000, Federally funded researchers from John Hopkins University, the EPA, HUD, The Kennedy Krieger Institute and Department of Agriculture spread sludge from a sewage treatment plant on the lawns of nine low-income families, and a vacant lot in Baltimore and East St. Louis.  The families and residents were told the sludge was safe and not informed about the toxic mixture of human and industrial waste the sludge contained. The research was conducted to see if the toxic waste absorbed into the water supply could effectively reduce lead levels in children.

Children Forcibly Vaccinated in Chad

In December 2012, at least 500 children in Gouro, Chad were forcibly given the MenAfriVac during school resulting in dangerous side effects including convulsions, and paralysis. Parents were not notified of any plans to vaccination their children at school and parental consent was never requested. The forced vaccinations were part of an aggressive healthcare initiative sponsored by several internationally revered organizations including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

Then there was the radiation experiments in St. Louis where they sprayed people with radioactive dust claiming it was for debugging.

(Source: knowledgeequalsblackpower, via octupusjam)