The Supernatural Power That is Fame

Sometimes the strangest revelations can come from the most unlikely quarters.

Dave Stewart was one half of the 80s Synthpop hit machine Eurythmics, and has also done a lot of work as a producer and soundtrack artist, working with a number of high-profile artists and on various films and TV shows. He's not exactly a button-down kind of guy but he's not Marilyn Manson either. So you can imagine I was a bit surprised to read this the other day:
Dave Stewart — one-half of ’80s duo Eurythmics with Annie Lennox, who’s gone on to collaborate with Mick Jagger, Bob Dylan and Katy Perry — says that since 1979 his body’s been inhabited by another being, who’s written all his songs. 
“I had a huge car crash in Germany ... I had many different [operations],” Stewart told a gobsmacked Rosanna Scotto and Greg Kelly on “Good Day New York.” 
“I died on the operating table, I flatlined, in about 1979, and somebody else slipped into my body, which is called a walk-in ... That’s the name when that happens,” Stewart matter-of-factly told the hosts. “From then on, I’ve been somebody else. I am completely not me. I’m speaking on behalf of Dave, but I am somebody else who has written hundreds and thousands of songs.”
Now I've seen everything. Dave Stewart is claiming to be a Walk-In.

Oddly enough I watched The X-Files Walk-In bonanza, "Sein Und Zeit" the night before I read this article. There's nothing particularly synchronistic about that; me watching "Sein Und Zeit" just means it's Tuesday.

I thought the story was particularly interesting in the wake of the Super Bowl when Beyonce Knowles performed in "Sasha Fierce" mode, the alter ego she claimed to have created, or claims created her.

Beyonce introduced the world to Sasha Fierce with the album named in her alter ego's honor, but it appears that her imaginary friend was not actually created for the occasion and had in fact been lurking in the shadows all along, or at least since 2003. 

What she described sounded very much like possession. Did she create this character or summon her?

“When I see a video of myself on stage or TV I’m like, ‘Who is that girl?’.  That’s not me, I wouldn’t dare do that.” – Beyoncé Interview, September 2003. 
“I created my stage persona to protect myself, so that when I go home, I don’t have to think about what it is I do. Sasha isn’t me.” – Beyoncé, Parade Magazine, December 2006 
“I wouldn’t like Sasha if I met her offstage.”– Beyoncé, Parade Magazine, 2006. 
“I have someone else that takes over when it’s time for me to work and when I’m on stage, this alter ego that I’ve created that kind of protects me and who I really am”.– Beyoncé Press Statement, October 2008. 
“I have created an alter ego: things I do when performing I would never do normally. I reveal things about myself that I wouldn’t do in an interview.” – Beyoncé, Marie Claire interview, October 2008. 
“I have out-of-body experiences [on stage]. If I cut my leg, if I fall I don’t even feel it. I’m so fearless, I’m not aware of my face or my body.” – Beyoncé, Marie Claire interview, October 2008.
But again, we saw the allegedly-dead Sasha Fierce character alive and well, in her trademark black leather and gold, at the Super Bowl (Beyonce previously claimed to have "killed" her), whatever you might think of the mash that was unleashed during that poorly-conceived halftime spectacle.*

But as fate would have it, Beyonce wasn't the only performer who claims to be hosting another entity performing at the SuperBowl.

Chris Martin of Coldplay claims to be gloriously possessed by the demonic shade of legendary serial killer Gilles de Rais, and upon every full moon he bathes in the blood, wait.

Sorry. Working off some incorrect information there.

Oh, I feel so, so... mind-controlled! 

Lady Gaga claims to be possessed by the spirit of her dead aunt, a spirit-transference that allegedly occurred in the womb:
"Poker Face’ singer Lady Gaga thinks she’s the reincarnated spirit of her dead aunt. The 24-year-old star thinks that her creativity comes from her late aunt Joanne, who transferred her spirit into her mother Cynthia’s womb. 'My father’s sister Joanne died when she was 19 and he was 16. And when my mother was engaged to marry my father, they were staying in his house, where he grew up, and a light came into the room and touched her stomach and went away,'  
So there's that. And as we read about way back when a woman claimed that Gaga was keeping the spirit of her dead daughter captive. Hyperbole? Metaphor? Read this:
"A still-grieving mom says her late daughter inspired Lady Gaga on her path to superstardom, and wants the 'Poker Face' pop icon to give the tragic teen her due. 
"Yana Morgana is seeking the rights to release the dozen or so songs her daughter, Lina, recorded with Gaga -- then Stefani Germanotta -- before Lina committed suicide at age 19.

"And she wants the 'Paparazzi' princess to acknowledge it was Lina Morgana's dark, edgy style that helped create Lady Gaga. 'I'm doing this because I want to keep her spirit alive,' Yana, 41, told The Post. "Lady Gaga is holding Lina's soul, and I want her soul to be free."

"'Lina had that style. Gaga had a different style. She changed dramatically overnight,' Yana said. "Within a year of their collaboration, Lina jumped to her death from the roof of a 10-story hotel on Staten Island. About a month after the October 2008 suicide, Germanotta became Lady Gaga, took the music industry by storm and spawned an army of fans she dubbed her 'little monsters.'

'Tyler Schwab, Lina's ex-boyfriend, said he was stunned the first time he saw a Gaga video. It was the same style, the same look, the same music, the same voice, the same jaw line -- the way they expressed themselves,' said Schwab. 'And I was like, "Is that Lina?" It was so, so shocking. It was like looking at a ghost."
As crazy as this may all sound, it's not without precedent in the pop music world. Doors singer Jim Morrison famously claimed to be possessed by the spirit of a Native American shaman. From a interview with Doors co-founder Ray Manzarek:
What was that fateful meeting with Morrison on the beach like? 
We had graduated from film school, and there we were, with no prospects, whatsoever. ...So anyway, Jim was originally going to New York, but for some reason he didn’t. And we ended up running into one another on the beach. Talk about being guided by the better angels of your selves–or, even more so, being guided by the spirit of the dead Indian that was in Jim’s body. It was as if he was saying, “The two of you–psychedelic warriors–have to get together.” 
And of course when you're talking about the transmigration of souls and what-not, you have the famous example of Aleister Crowley, who claimed to be the reincarnation of French occultist Eliphas Levi, going so far as to catalog the reasons why he in fact was so in the 1911 release Book Four:
1. The date of Eliphas Levi's death was about six months previous to that of Aleister Crowley's birth. The reincarnating ego is supposed to take possession of the foetus at about this stage of development. 
2. Eliphas Levi had a striking personal resemblance to Aleister Crowley's father...
3. Aleister Crowley wrote a play called "The Fatal Force" at a time when he had not read any of Eliphas Levi's works. The motive of this play is a Magical Operation of a very peculiar kind. The formula which Aleister Crowley supposed to be his original idea is mentioned by Levi. We have not been able to trace it anywhere else with such exact correspondence in every detail. 
4. Aleister Crowley found a certain quarter of Paris incomprehensibly familiar and attractive to him. This was not the ordinary phenomenon of the "deja vu", it was chiefly a sense of being at home again. He discovered long after that Levi had lived in the neighbourhood for many years. 
And so on. 

So what, just crazy artist-types being crazy, right? If it's not this it's alien abduction or poltergeists or whatever. Just put them all on some pills and forget about it.

Well, as difficult as it might be for some of us to accept these are exceptional people, who just aren't like you and me. We're talking about people who distinguished themselves in a cut-throat business where 99,999 out of 100,000 people meet with total and complete failure and obscurity. They've displayed a remarkable degree of staying power, which is even more unlikely than getting your name out there in the first place. Millions of people have bought their records and been influenced by their music.

And these are just four artists here; I have no idea how many have very similar experiences who aren't open about them. I suspect there are a quite a few.

I know it's tempting for some to claim they're just "alters" or MONARCH subjects or Illuminati puppets but what that really ends up sounding like is simple sour grapes. I'm certainly no fan of either Beyonce or Lady Gaga, but I also wouldn't try to deny their extraordinary talent or diminish the fact that they've exerted an almost-unprecedented amount of control over their own careers.

Is there a spiritual dimension to their success? Is that indeed that elusive X-factor that separates the superstar from the second-string? Fame does seem to be a magical power all its own. I've seen what happens when it leaves the host. It does make you wonder.
What I can say with absolute certainty that what we are witnessing is the power of the irrational, the supernatural, and yes, the occult in the arts. The degraded occult symbolism we've seen in pop music over the past several years feels not only like intentional provocation but also very much like a counterpoint to the dominance of the hyper-rational everywhere else.

We wouldn't see so much of it were it not resonating in the culture. It moves product and it gets much sought-after clicks. And that includes all the people who claim to abhor yet can't seem to get enough of it.

In comes down to this: The more we try to push the irrational, the supernatural to the far fringes, the more we try to deny its place in our culture, the greater influence they actually have.

Why? Because they have real power.

And the irrational expresses itself best in art, which ultimately moves the human soul more than math or science will ever dare dream of. And fame itself is a power that seemingly defies the rational.

The term charisma comes from the Greek meaning "a gift from the gods," from the root word kharizesthai, meaning "to show favor to." Once again, those benighted ancients were several steps ahead of us.

So no, it's not too much of a stretch to call fame a super-natural power. It's a gift that seems to be bestowed on so very few of us and of those very few can maintain it. No one can quite figure out how or it would surely have been mass-produced by now. And attempts to do so have always fallen short.

It's certainly no accident then that so many stars have some hint of magic or the supernatural about them, if you just care to look.

*I've read a lot of interpretations of the show but I'm still going with the "militarization of women" theme we seem to be seeing, especially given the fact that the stories about the female militias formed to fight the Islamic State suddenly popped up in the media again this past week.

Super Bowl L: Bread and Circuses. And Symbols. (UPDATED)

Super Bowl L aired last night, marking the end of many eras. Peyton Manning looked every bit like a man all-too-ready to retire, kept aloft only by the most dominant defense in football.*

The Panthers seemed dominant this year but were helped along by a schedule that wasn't exactly back-breaking, leading Five Thirty-Eight to declare them the worst team to ever go 11-0. Cam Newton may be an excellent athlete but he's a terrible sportsman, throwing tantrums during the game and walking out on reporters' softball questions, leading The Sporting News to headline "Sore loser Cam Newton embarrasses himself with disastrous postgame press conference."

But give the guy a break; playing a string of 4-12 teams didn't prepare him for Denver's Terminator D-line.

And no one else exactly covered themselves in glory. I called this the "Screwup Bowl" on Facebook, the worst Super Bowl game I remember seeing. Fumbles, dropped passes, one-yard rushes, the goddamn punters on the field ever time I blinked- ugh. In the end it would be a question of who screwed up less. Well, other than Denver's flawless defense. Terrifying.

And Newton wasn't helped by the fact that his receivers couldn't manage to catch the frigging football or that his offensive line couldn't seem to stop him from taking seven brutal sacks. The man was getting hammered like a cheap nail all night, surely not the way he envisioned the game going. When he wasn't getting slammed he was getting swarmed. It was unrelenting. 

But that's the game. You take the gore with the glory and smile all the same. Or at least that's the way it's supposed to go. It rarely does.

Cam Newton's gushing, nerdy fanboys in the media (who Newton wouldn't piss on if they were on fire) took the loss even worse than he did, with sites like Deadspin writing classy headlines like "Peyton Manning Can Eat Shit" and ESPN writing apologias for his unsportsmanlike conduct.

I'll let their therapists sort all that out.

The end of the other era was seen in the incoherent mess of a halftime show. That the NFL is aggressively courting the female market was seen in the entertainment portion of the bread and circuses, with Lady Gaga (who looked more like Barbra Streisand than Dale Bozzio, another sign of the times) singing the National Anthem.

Well, almost; look at those creepy red eyes painted on her lids.

Then you had soft rock icons Coldplay looking totally lost and bewildered, lip-synching to a medley of something or other and wishing they never agreed to this.

Sure enough, you had Beyonce and Bruno Mars totally steal the show with their tightly choreographed dance performances (the songs themselves were tuneless dreck). 

The Mars symbolism should be obvious, given the huge push for Mars exploration we saw this past year (and will continue to see with the movie awards for The Martian) but I got a distinct whiff of Knowles' Law (a controversy over symbolism in the media is usually disguising a totally different symbolic message) with Beyonce Knowles' performance of "Formation", which was pre-billed as a tribute to the Black Panthers.

Katrina theme from "Formation" video†

But the lyrics to the song itself are the usual boasting and odes to materialism and consumerism. And the only Panthers Beyonce (who came to the game with a full police escort) probably cares about are the Carolina ones.

You know, the rich ones.

And what we actually saw- as in past Halftime Showswas more female militarization, a theme that's becoming increasingly important now with the idea of the draft for women being floated. And Facebook Gematria guru Mark Gray pointed out a curious fact about the title "Formation"....

... its value in the English Sumerian system is 666. Huh.

After all the militarism and black leather and Coldplay looking ridiculous in this mash of symbol and nostalgia (better Halftime shows from previous years were projected onto the stage and there were all kinds of people in colorful outfits wandering around and generally looking idiotic), we see this giant cross (!) and then this quasi-rainbow "Believe in Love" message that had nothing to do with anything we just saw.

Speaking of symbolism, it should be remembered that Denver is home to one of the big daddy of all occult symbol sites, the Denver AirportThis and the fact that the Broncos logo is a white horse, have made the Broncos appearances in Super Bowls a constant source for conspiranoid anxiety.

Another Knowles' Law eruption emerged with some on Twitter claiming that the halftime show was a gay messaging ritual, when in fact the color scheme and stage set come from Coldplay's new album cover.

In other words, it was all actually a big advertisement for the new Coldplay album. Talk about "audacity."

But what is all that symbolism on the cover supposed to mean? Note the rainbows in those eerie murals from the Denver Airport. And why do we see this at the same they appear on the Super Bowl featuring a team from Denver? That's one heck of a coincidence, Brownie.

Also note those big Saturns. Hmmm. There was also an ad for Skittles ("Taste the Rainbow") featuring Steven Tyler last night. It was painfully bad. Which brings us to the next portion of our show...


The ads were so lame that their lameness became a story, even in Madison Ave's pet paper The New York Times. The appeal to the female market resulted in a bunch of ads that made men look so stupid that even extreme-left clickbait-farm Salon was inspired to criticize them.

Or was this all more deflection? We saw the usual militarism (the Navy Blue Angels opened the show with a flyover) and globalism and alien-memes (and all three with the new Independence Day trailer) and then of course the gene-editing agenda with "puppy-monkey-baby." 

Speaking of babies, we also saw the "Super Bowl Babies" spots, which repeated throughout the game, almost felt like "time to make more, we mean citizens, America." Something to watch out for.

Giorgio Tsoukalos graduated from internet punchline to official icon with his one-second appearance as an "alien expert" in a Taco Bell ad. 

I recently saw some numbers on
Ancient Aliens and realized why they keep renewing it: the series gets an average of 1.6 million viewers per episode, which doesn't sound like much, but is actually huge for a basic cable show that probably costs next to nothing to produce. That's a much bigger number than shows that get a lot more attention in the press.

And see this is The Year of Our Bowie, it's only natural that a Bowie song would make a Super Bowl ad, this one being one of his many odes to aliens.

Speaking of aliens, X-Files boards were ablaze with controversy when The X-Files' halftime teaser showed a preview from 'My Struggle II', featuring Scully morph into a Grey (or Pink, if you prefer). Chris Carter is going for broke. The man just doesn't care anymore.

Speaking of Ten Thirteen, we saw this Ouroboros in this LG ad featuring Liam Neeson. Why, I have no idea. Signaling to someone, surely. Liam Neeson was also in a movie called Taken, also the title of the miniseries I referred to as "X-Files Season 10" prior to this year.

What does it all mean? I can't put my finger on it quite yet but things are changing, moving behind the scenes. Plates are shifting beneath our feet. The next eight years will not be like the previous. Major changes are being readied. It seems right now there is chaos behind the scenes, kind of like what happens on a TV series when a new production team is coming in.

The Super Bowl is America's great secular holiday and also when its themes for the coming year are rolled out, movies, ads, social issues. That this show was such a mess seems to indicate that my suspicions are correct.

Strap yourselves in, the ride's going to get rough.

UPDATE: I can't believe I missed this ad- Colonial Williamsburg actually used "reversal of time" in their commercial? And 9/11? OK, something is definitely up. (For those of you not familiar with "reversal of time," read this)

 *Had the Patriots not lost so many key players to injuries over the season, putting all the pressure on Tom Brady's still-lethal passing arm, we would have seen a different game.
† For bonus Secret Sun synchitude enter my birthday-70166- as a zip code in Google Maps

Clownshow 2016: Can a Viper Change its Stripes?

This blog really found its voice during the 2008 Presidential Elections when I noticed that the two major candidates running for office seemed to incorporating the hieroglyph for Sirius in their campaign logos.

Or more accurately, the Stairway to Sirius.

This didn't exist in a vacuum, there were all kinds of emanations surrounding the elections and their aftermath, including the "major issue" of the dog with his "star quality" and the Sirius Star and all the rest of it. There's also the strange habit of Obama to make 17-minute speeches, which has continued throughout his time in office, as well as his strange fixation on Hanuman, the Hindu god.*

Symbolic gold, until I got tired of playing the game.

I haven't paid any attention to the election this year because I don't actually believe that it's going to change anything. Indeed, we saw a rare moment of candor in The Boston Globe, of all places, informing us that no matter who you elect the agenda at the top remains the same.

And we're seeing such tidal forces at work in the global economy, it's impossible to take the old bromides seriously anymore anyway.

Certainly we're seeing the Republican Party now in a state of civil war since the rank-and-file finally realized that their victories in the 2010 and 2014 Elections meant nothing at all, that the Administration and Congressional leaders are going to do what they are told to do by the think-tanks and the corporate chieftains who will set them up for life when they leave office. 
When it comes to the issues that really effect your life and your future, the Democrats and Republicans are all on one side. And it's not yours.

Democratic voters don't realize the fix is in because they see their man in the White House as some kind of victory, despite massive downticket Democrat losses over the past seven years. And despite the fact that the only real difference between Obama and his predecessor is the rhetoric and a few social issues (most of which he "evolved" on due to outside pressure).

They are certainly identical on the major issues that matter to the Bilderberg and Davos crowds.

True, Obama has unleashed the genii of identity politics since his re-election in an attempt to keep the base mobilized, kept in its bottle since Bill Clinton was first elected.

Or so the story goes.

Perhaps instead the goal is to keep the party's coalition fragmented and paranoid and therefore dependent on the party itself.
The Republicans have been doing this for decades, after all. 
Or maybe the agenda is to prevent the anti-establishment Left and the libertarian Right from coalescing into a united front against the Establishment, something you saw some movement on during the depths of the economic crisis.  

Well...who knows.

Either way, the result of all of this manipulation is an extremely divided, stressed-out and angry country. Not to mention a country experiencing rising crime and poverty and all the rest. What that might ultimately be leading to is an open question. 

Let me just say, though, that when it comes to parsing out hidden agendas, I tend to adjudge intention by result. If you get my meaning.

But what do the symbols tell us? 

That there's so little real import to this election seems evident by the campaign logos, which are the dreariest, tiredest and least imaginative batch I've seen in years. And the ones that aren't dreary are frickin' weird.

Now, bear this in mind; entire companies can meet their year's payroll just on the sale of one logo. With some corporate jobs, sometimes much more than that.

And this is a painstaking process. Nothing is accidental or arbitrary in the design of a campaign logo, you can have designers and consultants working out literally every micrometer of detail. 
So what the hell is this?

Hillary Clinton's ugly and bizarre logo, with its right-oriented arrow and its twin blue pillars. You didn't need to be a Truther to get a strange flashback from this extremely odd imagery. 

The 9/11 link actually became a story in the mainstream press, leading one to wonder just what the hell is this logo trying to say. Something following Knowles' First Law, surely.

I don't know. But I do know that this is exactly the kind of provocation that the Clintons have specialized in since they burst onto the national scene.
Then there's the Clintons' close family friend, Donald Trump, who we're supposed to believe is "taking on the Establishment" he's been a very, very happy and comfortable part of his entire life. As you might expect, his logo is about him, featuring his profile.

But what the hell is that red stripe on his head? His combover? Pay attention to that because it pops up again..., in Bernie Sanders' logo, an otherwise dull affair. But what are those stripes supposed to be?  

The obvious inference is stripes (from a flag), but they look more like earthworms. Or better yet, serpents
SIDEBAR: Now be aware that in graphic design you're essentially dealing with signals, not explicit images. Hillary's arrow doesn't actually look like an arrow, it's a drastic simplification, an abstracted idea of an arrow. Same goes with stars, flames and all the other icons we are looking at. Bear that in mind when looking at these odd "stripes."
It's an odd design, to be certain. And what did Ian Fleming say about three times? Because sure enough, the same odd "stripe" shape pops up again…

…right here. 

That's three of the leading candidates with the same weird (and ugly) form. 
Cruz's logo (a flame and a Cruz, or cross?) is even stranger and more disturbing than Hillary's...

...because you have those weird, snake-looking stripes and then…

…the All-Seeing Eye, or some kind of eye, with a pentagram as the pupil.

It doesn't look very friendly, does it? 

I don't know what to make of this. This all could be some odd kind of serpent symbolism, I'm not sure yet. I need more data. Just remember, nothing in politics is accidental.

Which is a good time to point out that we also see a suggestion of the pentagram-eye in Carly Fiorina's (awful) logo.

Ben Carson, conversely, uses normal stripes (with squared ends) in an otherwise pedestrian effort. (I'll spare you O'Malley's and Jeb's and the rest). 

Now, you could go out on a limb and see the negative space in the stripes and say that's the White Nile and the Belt of Orion, but...

...oh, go ahead if you like.

The flame logo shows up again in Rand Paul's crappy logo, but given his father's, um, associations…

…the "flame" kind of more reminds me of the open hand column we see here. And that "flame" form is actually the shape animators are taught to use to draw hands. 

Marco Rubio's logo is…odd.
 Not exactly eye-catching. And putting his name in lowercase only adds to the impression he's a lightweight who's not ready for prime time.

But I'm far more interested in his name "Marco Antonio" (with all the connotations to Cleopatra and the rest) and to Mars the Red (Ruby) Planet itself. Keep an eye on this one.

And "A New American Century?" Yeah, definitely keep an eye on this one.

Me, I'll keep an eye on the logos once the tickets are decided after the conventions. In the meantime, I'm trying not to pay any attention to this whole charade, it seriously depresses the shit out of me.

It might depress me even more if I believed any of it, for a single minute.

UPDATE: Reader Escal-Hathor reminds of the snake-like Pentium logo and its possible etymological links to serpents (SerPentium, or 'Place of Snakes'). That's even quite Ouroboros-like, don't you think?

UPDATE: I rest my case.

* As I predicted way back when we've seen a major push on the space front, something that I saw emerge in the symbolism during the election. As readers are well aware, the space program is full of its own high initiate symbolism. They don't even try to disguise it anymore. 

Despite some of the theories you might hear I think the space program is actually an attempt to keep the global economy moving, an economy which is beginning to face major headwinds on a macro-scale.

† It may be no accident that so much of the identity politic agitation is taking place within Humanities and social sciences programs in Universities that have been in constant danger of losing funding and that some- particularly those who would prefer colleges to be retooled as training facilities for MBA and STEM majors- would love to eliminate altogether. Impossible, you say?

Japan- an entire country- is already doing it. 

With state legislatures starting to take a hard look now at speech codes and "safe spaces" and so on, "give 'em enough rope" may not be just the title of a Clash album.