Lindsay Perigo
Lindsay Perigo

Fraudsters and Force-mongers

Such sound & fury, such tumult & shouting, over condom-wrapped virgins. It's hard to know which of the players in this farce have been the most risible.

First you have the pretentious poseurs who tout this sort of crap as art. This category includes such dilettantes as Auckland's very own Queen of Affirmative Action, a member of the Te Papa Board, who publicly proclaims that semen-stained blankets are "haunting, provocative & powerful." It includes all the luminaries of the state tit-sucking, arty-farty Establishment who've been filling the pages of our newspapers for weeks with their drivel insisting that the spectacle of condoms wrapped in virgins (or vice versa or whatever) challenges us to think. Oh, please!!

Second, you have the state tit-sucking con-artists themselves. Charlatans who depict crudely-crafted human skulls with axes through them. Or who display used toilet tissue, or shoes with bullet holes in them, or a skeleton with elephant dung smeared over it — to mention certain other exhibits at Te Papa right now.

Third, you have Te Papa itself — the Museum of Political Correctness, paid for by money stolen from us by politicians — sponsoring this excrement with more money stolen from us by politicians.

Fourth, you have the mad Muslims & crazy Christians, straight out of the Dark Ages, who think the only answer to the excrement is to ban it &kick the hapless security men assigned to guarding it (the next best thing to burning them at the stake, one assumes).

Did ever a bunch of fraudsters & totalitarians so richly deserve each other?

Whoever the most risible characters are, this comedy holds up an instructive mirror to the state of our culture, uniting as it does the dominant anti-values of our time, those ancient allies, unreason and force.

The rampant irrationality, the in-your-face nihilism of the afore-mentioned exhibits is self-evident. In itself, however, this is evil of a non-coercive type which would not be a governmental concern in the free society that I as a libertarian advocate. People should be free to wallow in sewage if they wish, just as long as they don't forcibly drag the rest of us in with them. But there's the rub. In the case of Te Papa and the aesthetic shysters it is patronising, they are forcibly dragging us in. We are all made to pay for their goddam tripe. As a libertarian, I object to this most strenuously.

Facing off against this composite of unreason & force is: another composite of unreason and force! — the medieval religionists who bay for the banning of anything that insults their particular brand of cosmic nonsense. How timely! Latterly the practice of book-burning & video-banning has been the domain of feminist & gay activists, and the medievals have been on the receiving end — as with the recent gay-instigated outlawing by the Film & Literature Board of Review of two Christian videos. It's useful to be reminded that the Christians' credentials as prohibitionists remain as impressive as ever, notwithstanding the dose of their own medicine they have been receiving.

"They who believe absurdities commit atrocities," said Voltaire, in a truism that's applicable to both sides in the condomed virgin dispute. If it were not for such legal remnants of the concept of individual rights as do remain, the antagonists would assuredly, sooner or later, initiate a bloodbath. I for one would happily leave them to it, except for their infernal insistence that everyone else get involved. So, I shall content myself with pointing out that beneath the sound & fury, the tumult & the shouting, these self-proclaimed foes are in fact implacable friends.

Their true, common enemies are reason & freedom.

If you enjoyed this, why not subscribe?