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That gentle piano is the peace of the grave
April 18, 2003 11:39 PM   Subscribe

Young-hae Chang's latest, Operation Nukorea, is shattering, unflinching, and beautifully executed. It's a little tale about consequences, and what happens downstream from decisions not sufficiently considered.

It probably would have brought tears to my eyes even if I did not have family in Seoul. Watch it through to the end.
posted by adamgreenfield (56 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
As mentioned inthread here, but most certainly worth a post to the front page. Excellent, unflinching and terrifying, if a tiny bit overwrought.

(You, me and hama7 all posting within a couple of minutes of each other...must be Mefi-time in NE Asia!)
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:45 PM on April 18, 2003


LOL. So true, so true. Actually, we just ran a 10K, and this is the last thing I was able to get out before collapsing for a well-deserved midafternoon snooze.
posted by adamgreenfield at 12:05 AM on April 19, 2003


if a tiny bit overwrought

It does pack a wallop, as if we need a reminder of the rheumy bloodshot eyes peering down the artillery sights at us from up north.

Despite YHC's apocalyptic and lurid prose, and although the Northern military certainly has the ruthlessness, I don't think they'd make it too far without a little visit from some pretty nasty and well prepared South Korean forces, not to mention the other military which is allied pretty closely with S.K. through thick and thin.

I also noticed that the N.K. thugs have backed off a bit from their nuclear grandstanding, explaining today that due to an error in *translation*, that they do not actually have nuke capability. Oops.

Thanks adamgreenfield.
posted by hama7 at 12:13 AM on April 19, 2003


A little far-fetched considering that a US attack on N Korea would hit far more than a solitary nuclear facility.
posted by mischief at 1:31 AM on April 19, 2003


Or that the US would have a mere handful of forces stationed in South Korea, and be completely surprised/overwhelmed once North Korea attacked in response a US strike on a North Korean nuclear facility.

Really, though, I'm a little bit of two minds to this. One mind thinks the site is moving, powerful, etc. and the trackback only makes it more so.

My other mind thinks that pretty much anything would sound poignant if it was very slowly revealed and played to somber piano music, that the possibility of such a scenario occurring as the author describes laughably unlikely, and furthermore I'm not sure I'm feeling the whole "the US shouldn't attack North Korea b/c North Korea will

KILL

DESTROY

MAIM

RATS


etc. to South Korea" vibe that's going on.
posted by cohappy at 1:41 AM on April 19, 2003


Young-hae Chang does use the medium [Flash] well.

Clean and spare.

Fried-day Flash, indeed.
posted by Dunvegan at 2:52 AM on April 19, 2003


He forgot the bit where Dydecker assassinates George Bush after Tokyo gets nuked.
posted by dydecker at 3:38 AM on April 19, 2003


She's a she, dude.
posted by adamgreenfield at 3:42 AM on April 19, 2003


And Tokyo's not much of a loss.
posted by adamgreenfield at 3:43 AM on April 19, 2003


explaining today that due to an error in *translation*, that they do not actually have nuke capability.

Ahhaha, that's perfect. You got a link?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:46 AM on April 19, 2003


Stav : Try here
posted by punilux at 3:49 AM on April 19, 2003


Nice catch, punilux. I saw it on a T.V. news report this morning.
posted by hama7 at 4:19 AM on April 19, 2003


Yes, a little overwrought, but it's more than just a little tale about consequences. It's a scathing indictment about today's overlord. Forget discussion, disregard evidence and forge ahead with your own agenda, damn the consequences and the rest of y'all.

It also got me thinking if we as mankind have progressed or learned anything at all from the past and are just monkeying around still.

A scientific question, will rats survive all that poison gas 'n all? Really!

Interestingly enough, the sound wasn't happening when I read her piece. In the background, I had a great sports talk show on from a local radio station..... nice effect indeed!
posted by alicesshoe at 7:25 AM on April 19, 2003


Warfilter had this one first :-)
posted by Bletch at 7:46 AM on April 19, 2003


Yes. Very moving. Obviously, South Korea (and Japan, and others in the region) will be much better off by ignoring the North, and letting it develop a fully armed nuclear arsenal. (What do you suppose would happen "downstream" from that insufficiently considered decision? Seems like an equally moving Flash presentation might be designed for that as well, no?)

Fact is, the US has done nothing to indicate any military strikes are being contemplated - and has adamently insisted upon (of all things) multilateral, regional talks with the "world community" everyone is so hot on. In this instance, North Korea - having no oil or other benefits to bribe Security Council members with - has been insisting that it doesn't want this, but rather wants talks with the US alone. In fact, north Korea has been going out of it's way to rattle sabers and try to bait the US ... to the point of even suggesting it has missiles that can reach the western US, and lobbing test missiles over Japan. The US government, however, has responded by ... insisting upon regional diplomatic talks.

Interesting how an entirely bogus scenerio is constructed, and then talked about as though it is plausible. Even more interesting is this:

It's a scathing indictment about today's overlord. Forget discussion, disregard evidence and forge ahead with your own agenda, damn the consequences and the rest of y'all.

So then, the US (in this fanciful world) takes out NK's nuclear facilities. NK launches thousands of tons of bombs and missiles, including chemical weapons, and reduces SK to ashes. And it is a "scathing indictment" of the US. Not North korea. The current facts (that are being "disregarded" in this post) are that North Korea wants to "forget discussion" (the US is pushing for discussion); North Korea that wants to "forge ahead with it's own agenda" (and in fact is doing do, much to the dismay of UN nuclear regulators); it is North Korea that is saying "damn the consequences and the rest of y'all"

In short, the US is acting exactly as the "world community" thinks it should act, and North Korea is acting exactly as the US is being accused of acting. Yet it is still the US, not North Korea, being indicted (even in completely fictional flights of fancy).
posted by MidasMulligan at 8:04 AM on April 19, 2003


i wonder why she uses zeros instead of 'O's? also not related to the content at all, i was just thinking the 'star wars intro' method would be a pretty great way to read books online :D what a nightmare scenario set to some pretty jazzy music!
posted by kliuless at 9:51 AM on April 19, 2003


well i'm convinced...I didn't realize those north koreans were such monsters!

and I love the chain reactions of exploding cars....I'm surprised we don't see that more often during interstate pile-ups...
posted by jacobsee at 11:36 AM on April 19, 2003


As web folk are fond of saying, View Source is your friend.
posted by brownpau at 12:57 PM on April 19, 2003


"In this instance, North Korea - having no oil or other benefits to bribe Security Council members with - has been insisting that it doesn't want this, but rather wants talks with the US alone" . . . whose cabinet members are also not susceptible to bribes, as they were in Iraq?
posted by divrsional at 1:09 PM on April 19, 2003


Overwrought, yes, but terribly beautiful. After a while I zoomed in a couple times--just fragments and single enormous letters moving up the screen.

i wonder why she uses zeros instead of 'O's?

I took that as an intentional use of the slash through the middle, kluiless, with all its connotations of negation, erasure, and absence.
posted by hippugeek at 8:22 PM on April 19, 2003


I really hate that so-called 'art' by Young-hae Chang. It's just text set to music, and garish and nausiating. I can't understand why so many people like it. Why the hell can't she just write out her text as a poem and put it on the web for us to read at our own pace?

Also, I'm sure the US would take out as much of NKs artilery sites as they could in any air-strike.
posted by delmoi at 9:03 PM on April 19, 2003


"I really hate that so-called 'art' by Picasso. It's just paint set to canvas, and garish and nauseating."

To each his own, they say.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:09 PM on April 19, 2003


MidasMulligan:
The current facts (that are being "disregarded" in this post) are that North Korea wants to "forget discussion" (the US is pushing for discussion); North Korea that wants to "forge ahead with it's own agenda" (and in fact is doing do, much to the dismay of UN nuclear regulators); it is North Korea that is saying "damn the consequences and the rest of y'all"


What world do you live on? The bush admin has been repeatedly refusing to talk to the North Koreans this whole time. We still refuse to talk to the them on a one-on-one basis, wich is what N.K has been asking for. N.K. Hasn't wanted to to negotiate through japan and china, which, for some reason, is what we want.

I don't really see how you can call North Korea's actions as wanting to "forget discussion" They whole reason for their action is because they want to discuss things.
posted by delmoi at 9:13 PM on April 19, 2003


Thank you, delmoi. I just read MM's fantasy-island comment and sighed, and moved on to poke you with a stick, as it required less effort.

Heh.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:18 PM on April 19, 2003


Stupidity and shortsightedness and malfeasance are, very unfortunately, not zero-sum quantities, MidasMulligan.

I think we can take it as read that nK's juche regime is among the scummiest worldwide, which does not negate the possibility that America's interventions and ambitions are less than praiseworthy themselves.

What I'm finding most interesting about having posted this piece is the way folks' reactions to it reveal so much about their idological biases. Some of you read it a scathing indictment of North Korean brutality (which it is, IMO); some of you as a clear-sighted refusal to let Imperial America off the hook (ditto); and some of you choose to interpret it as an improbable "fantasy scenario" with advocacy foremost in mind.

And there I part ways with you. It's art, not a policy white paper. And, uh, delmoi: what stavros said. I know a lot of people working in Flash - Davis, Nakamura, Natzke, Patterson - but YHCHI's are the only works in this medium that have ever *moved* me.
posted by adamgreenfield at 9:59 PM on April 19, 2003


ideological
posted by adamgreenfield at 9:59 PM on April 19, 2003


We still refuse to talk to the them on a one-on-one basis, wich is what N.K has been asking for.

I think the case here is that the U.S. will not be blackmailed or bullied to the bargaining table for yet another payout to North Korea on its own terms. The U.S. has repeatedly said that North Korea's neighbors should be involved in the containment of N.K., as it affects them most directly.

The United States, until the open violations of the appeasement-by-Clinton deal, was the single largest supplier of aid, fuel, and cash to North Korea to the tune of hundreds of billions per year. Every time Kim Jong-il's wallet gets a little light does not mean he gets to rachet up the nuclear rhetoric and bully the U.S. for more cash (although South Korea does not set such a sterling example in this regard).

So maybe I should ask you what planet you are living on, if you sincerely believe that the U.S. is somehow to blame for the sick depravity of a murderous lunatic.

I shouldn't be surprised, since these same voices condemned the U.S for acting against Hussein, (faulting the U.S.) and prayed for U.S. forces to fail and cheered for more bloodshed.

What planet indeed.
posted by hama7 at 11:35 PM on April 19, 2003


...cheered for more bloodshed.

Hama7, I nearly always enjoy your fpps, but sometimes your comments remind me of a joke from my childhood:

A little girl was walking through the park one day and saw a man sitting on a bench. He had a banana sticking out of his ear.
"Sir," she said, "you have a banana in your ear."
"What?" he asked politely.
"You have a banana in your ear."
"What?"
"There's a BANANA in your EAR!"
"I'm sorry," he said. "I'm afraid I can't hear you. I have a banana in my ear."
posted by hippugeek at 12:49 AM on April 20, 2003


1) The US should not be blackmailed, nor should the rest of the world. On this I will agree. Of course, that's what's always worked in the past for Kim JI (see also: Agreed Framework, 1994), so why stop now is no doubt what they're thinking.

2) Kim JI is a bad bad man. Orders of magnitude worse than ol' Saddam, in terms of corpses at least, I think it could be argued. Duh.

3) America must - but refuses to - take some responsibility not only for the continuing problems on the peninsula, in which it bears as much responsibility as anyone in ratcheting up the tensions recently, but for the deaths due to famine of millions in the DPRK in the last few years of the '90s. Double duh, with a shovel to the head.

4) George Bush is also a bad bad man. His body count is still pretty low, though, so regime change by force is probably not something that will get much international support yet. Too bad.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:50 AM on April 20, 2003


Hippugeek, you obviously missed the comments I read (and continue to read from some news outlets, including some made by present company), which in fact did cheer and hoped for more bloodshed.....of U.S. troops. Shall I find them?

America must - but refuses to - take some responsibility not only for the continuing problems on the peninsula, in which it bears as much responsibility as anyone in ratcheting up the tensions recently, but for the deaths due to famine of millions in the DPRK in the last few years of the '90s.

What responsibility does the U.S. refuse to take in racheting up tensions? North Korea, and North Korea alone is responsible for its actions. Sticks and stones. When North Korea kicked the inspectors out, the game stopped. As I just mentioned, the U.S. was the single largest supplier on the planet of food and cash to North Korea, so because the N.K. government appropriated the food and money to feed and clothe its military and let its civilians starve by the millions, the U.S is somehow to blame? Is this really what you seem to be suggesting? It seems pathological, but if it's the case that no matter what Kim Jong-Il does is America's fault, then wouldn't your reasoning also not exclude military conflict?

What I can't understand is this frustratingly illogical sentiment: the U.S. is wrong to give food to a dictatorship (if it's misused by the dictatorship, then the U.S. gets the blame for starvation), but the U.S. is wrong to fight to remove a dictatorship.

Here's an old article explaining exactly how food and other aid was being misused years ago: Feeding the Dictator by Fiona Terry.

Other than just calling Bush "bad" and by comparison, Kim Jong-Il equally "bad", could you please explain how Bush is not only "bad" but on par with a murderous Stalinist dictator who calls 1/3 of his own population "expendable"? Because I'd really like to know how such a comparison is even possible in cold reality.

It makes about as much sense as the display (in Japan, of all places!) of this defaced U.S. flag.
posted by hama7 at 1:46 AM on April 20, 2003


It's art and it should make one stop and think. Call her piece a worst case possible scenario. The message? No war. In this day and age, the threat to the planet and its inhabitants who survive is less than optimistic. We've "advanced" a little further from muskets, you see. The first one to push the button may wipe out the entire civilization, like the disappearance of dinosaurs...

The use of the null instead of o's is definitely intentional.


Can't help but thinking how much this FPP has relevance.

From one of the many links in the above [this] link, from a book review titled "Excuses for Madness" by M.F.Burnyeat on William Harris's book, Restraining Rage: The Ideology of Anger Control in Classical Antiquity

In his De Ira ('On Anger'), Seneca claimed that anger is the only passion that can at times grip a whole nation. By 'anger' he meant the desire for vengeance against an enemy that has inflicted injury on one's people: 'No entire people has ever burned with love for a woman, no whole state has set its hope on money or gain; ambition seizes individuals one by one; only fury plagues whole communities at once.'
posted by alicesshoe at 2:39 AM on April 20, 2003


And Tokyo's not much of a loss.

Just a sec.......What?
posted by hama7 at 7:45 AM on April 20, 2003


...I was pissed that dydecker was only moved to threaten Dubya with violence at the imagined loss of Tokyo, a far more pretentious, effete and self-regarding city than Seoul.

You can understand this comment as part of my ongoing mission to cure Westerners (especially those who have never set foot here) of their uncritical adulation of all things Japanese.
posted by adamgreenfield at 8:04 AM on April 20, 2003


Oh, I see. I admire your mission, and dialing down the precious affectation of Japanese stuff is admirable. Seoul is definitely less self-obsessed, (and more densely populated). And I see your point more clearly now, but it did come as a shock at first.
posted by hama7 at 5:16 PM on April 20, 2003


Me too, Adam. Me too...
posted by gen at 6:27 PM on April 20, 2003


And Tokyo's not much of a loss.

The death of over twelve million human beings is 'not much of a loss'?

...I was pissed that dydecker was only moved to threaten Dubya with violence at the imagined loss of Tokyo, a far more pretentious, effete and self-regarding city than Seoul.

If a city is pretentious, effete and self-regarding, it's destruction would be 'not much of a loss'?

I don't know about the people you associate(d) with in Tokyo but the majority that I know are decent human beings striving to improve themselves, their surroundings and make life easier for their loved ones. In other words, they are not much different from the people you will meet in any other urban capital throughout the world. As the saying goes: we are more alike than we are different. People coming to Tokyo with anime-inspired expectations of 'neo-Tokyo' and 'unique' inhabitants will be disappointed.

Although you will run into negative and rude people in any city, Tokyo is generally a pleasant, safe and clean place to study, work and live. Tokyo needs a new governor, the infrastructure can use some work and, if you look hard enough, you can find some very nasty people here but please don't condemn an entire city based on a few of the people, a few experiences (which will be largely affected by one's attitude) or what one reads online (which will be very subjective).

You can understand this comment as part of my ongoing mission to cure Westerners (especially those who have never set foot here) of their uncritical adulation of all things Japanese.

If condemning entire cities for their alleged pretentiousness is a part of your 'mission' then I am sorry for you. What did the people of Japan do to you to deserve such contempt? Did you come to Japan with unrealistic expectations only to have them betrayed? Although I am very happy with my life here, not all of my experiences have been pleasant. One must learn, however, to put things into perspective, try to reap positive benefits from negative experiences and move on.

I agree with you that some people can heap uncritical adulation on things they do not fully understand. I can also see that some people can heap criticism and loathing on things for basically the same reason. Criticism has it's place but I have found that constructive criticism is a lot more productive.

Please look deeper before trying to condemn a city of twelve million people which includes almost 350,000 registered non-Japanese residents (including more than a few users from Metafilter I might add).

If Tokyo were as pretentious, effete and self-regarding as you paint it out to be, why is the population increasing and why do so many people (including non-Japanese people) choose to live here?

BTW, thank you for using the word 'effete' - I learned a new word today. Although I found your posts on this thread very negative, I was able to gain something positive from them.

Peace.
posted by cup at 12:00 AM on April 21, 2003


I hear you cup. I think (hope) it was a slip of the keyboard. *I also think that maybe someone (very?) close to adamgreenfield is Korean, and the historical friction between the two cultures can sometimes seem strong enough to rend one's alliances, if not sanity, asunder.

I have some experience in this matter, and believe me, if you want to rouse the rabid fury of hades, just try to drum up a conversation about anything Japanese with a Korean person (children included).

*Hypothesis based on past comments and recent travel
posted by hama7 at 1:02 AM on April 21, 2003


*also "family in Seoul" was in the front page post.
posted by hama7 at 1:11 AM on April 21, 2003


Thank you for the clarification, hama7.

I, too, hope it was a slip of the keyboard and apologize to Adam for making my response much harsher than it needed to be.

With the global economy in tatters, incompetent governments in power and a real threat from North Korea, I think that all of us in East Asia are under a lot of stress.

This is especially true for Adam if he has family living within immediate striking range of one of the biggest armies in the world which, by the way, happens to be ruled by a dictator who watches television all day (scary thought).

I should have recognized Adam's stress for what it was and not have taken mine out on him. My apologies to Adam and my prayers for peace on the Korean peninsula.

Again, thank you for making things clear, hama7.

Peace.
posted by cup at 1:56 AM on April 21, 2003


cup: you, sir, despite your "peace" posturing, are a presumptuous, self-righteous asshole, based on more than just this single post - and that's something I shall not retract. You are quite possibly the only person posting on MetaFilter I detest.

This is your "peace"? Fuck you, sir.

hama7: You are partially correct. I appreciate your attempt to mount an exegesis of my views, but my experiences were colored more by working with self-proclaimed "elites" like the folks at Dentsu than my family situation.
posted by adamgreenfield at 3:48 AM on April 21, 2003


if you want to rouse the rabid fury of hades, just try to drum up a conversation about anything Japanese with a Korean person (children included).

After almost 7 years here, in chunks, I have never heard a Korean speak of Japan with that kind of hatred, despite ample historical justification, and back when I was a conversation teacher and teaching both kids and adults up into their 60's, I asked about it a lot, shit disturber that I am. Honestly, I don't know who you've been talking to!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:24 AM on April 21, 2003


Dear Adam,

You condemn a country based on handful of people you met at Dentsu and you condemn me on the basis of a few posts?

As I said earlier, I truly am sorry for you.

Although you detest me, I do not detest you.

I admire you, Adam, as a person who has contributed much to the Metafilter community and I look forward to many more front page posts from you.

At the same time, I pity you for your prejudices against the people living in Japan, myself included, and sincerely hope that someday you will be free of the prejudices that enslave you and rob you of happiness.

I will not attempt to defend myself against your personal attacks because, quite frankly, comments made in cyberspace by people who know nothing about me have very little meaning for me or anyone else I am sure.

If you make baseless criticisms or cruel comments regarding the country in which I live or the people from whom I have received countless treasures in both heart and mind, however, expect to have your comments exposed for what they are and your baseless criticisms beaten down.

I am sure that you would do no different if I were to make indecent and inappropriate comments regarding Korea, her capital city or her people.

Peace.
posted by cup at 4:32 AM on April 21, 2003


Hey, punk, I need neither your sanctimony nor your pity.

You're the kind of uncritical gaijin who will always prosper here, because you assure this amnesiac society that its self-image is essentially a correct one - that it is blameless, that it is misunderstood, that it offers the world beauty and receives in return only the sneers of barbarians from cultures a fifth the age. The trouble with this picture is that not even my enlightened Japanese friends believe this anymore.

Guess what? I've never tried to tell you that your experience of Japan was a false one. You've experienced "countless treasures"? That's great. That's your experience.

It's a shame you haven't had the decency to extend me the same courtesy, however - you've deployed everything right down to the clumsiest armchair psychoanalysis to explain to me why my "impression" of Japan is a false or a biased one. How dare you - how dare you - call me a slave, or imagine me as "robbed of happiness"?

One could just as easily turn your "comments made in cyberspace by people who know nothing about me" back at you. You clearly have no idea how happy I am; you just as clearly don't possess a tenth of the imagination necessary to construct a world where others' experiences simply don't mesh with yours. So, from where I sit, it rather looks like you're the one with blinders on, pal.

And for the last time: nations are not women. Your sexism indicts you. No wonder you feel so very much at home here.
posted by adamgreenfield at 4:45 AM on April 21, 2003


...Tokyo is generally a pleasant, safe and clean place to study, work and live.

And this - apart from "safe," and even then only in the context of "relatively free from violent crime" - is so profoundly stupid a comment I shall not even comment on it. Your rose-tinted lenses are indeed superb.
posted by adamgreenfield at 5:02 AM on April 21, 2003


Good grief, I can't believe my silly comment generated so much heat.

The reason nuking Tokyo cuts to the bone for me is simply because I live here. Which of course has got nothing to do with my opinions on Tokyo vs. Seoul (Note: I don't have one). I read the link and suddenly the reality of losing all my friends and family hits me and I get upset and lash out.

Oh, all of what cup said.
posted by dydecker at 5:07 AM on April 21, 2003


Dear Adam,

You're the kind of uncritical gaijin who will always prosper here...

For your information, a positive mental attitude has helped me to prosper in all of the countries that I have enjoyed, not only Japan. I am very critical of Japan since I plan on raising a family here. I choose, however, to make my criticism constructive and express it to the Japanese people directly through speech contests, public debates, lectures, magazine articles, newspaper interviews and, in the near future, a book. It is a lot more effective, productive and fulfilling than making cheap shots on unrelated threads behind their backs. Have you tried sharing your views on Japan with your Japanese coworkers?

...because you assure [sic] this...

Don't even try to imagine what I assume.

With regards to Tokyo being safe, clean and pleasant, this is relative to some of the countries I have lived in. If you had lived in countries where disease is rampant, poverty is rife or countries in the top ten for murders per capita, then you would feel the same way.

Peace.
posted by cup at 5:19 AM on April 21, 2003


Honestly, I don't know who you've been talking to!

Really? I was dumbfounded at the degree and singlemindedness of the excoriation of Japan and all things Japanese, which I found didn't even require instigation. Really Stavros, you can't tell me you haven't had the "Japan Sea - East Sea" conversation at least once, or the Cherry Blossom discussion, or the food discussion, or the monks' metal spikes in all the mountaintops discussion, "beheading" dragon-shaped mountains discussion, or the "fictional" Japanese colony in Chongju.

Who haven't you been talking to?

I can add that I've gone back through all of cup's 35 comments, and I can't find a single one that would warrant such outrage from adamgreenfield, but maybe I've missed something.

I should add that sometimes Seoul bothers me unbelievably, but then again, there were days (several years ago) when New York grated on my very last nerve, so maybe it's just that we all have good and bad days, and we all need vacations sometimes too.
posted by hama7 at 5:39 AM on April 21, 2003


That backgroud music is rather soothing this morning. I think I'll just let it run in the background.
posted by adampsyche at 5:44 AM on April 21, 2003


Who haven't you been talking to?

All the wrong people? Or the right ones? I'm confused again. But really, although I have seen behaviours both in the individual and collective that could only be explained from the psychic scars of war and occupation and a concerted attempt by invaders to destroy an entire people's sense of self, I haven't seen much hatred. Envy, yes, resentment, sure, more than a little self-loathing emulation, all the time, but not too much hatred. Which is, I guess, reassuring, in its way.

we all have good and bad days, and we all need vacations sometimes too.

Ain't that the truth.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:31 AM on April 21, 2003


It's not outrage, it's disgust. I tend to show disgust at santimony, presumptuousness, sexism, and the propensity to take prima facie outrageous comments as serious statements of belief indicative of one's interiority.

"Nothing has become more alien to us than that desideratum of former times, 'peace of soul,' the Christian desideratum; there is nothing we envy less than the moralistic cow and the fat happiness of the good conscience."
posted by adamgreenfield at 6:33 AM on April 21, 2003


I guess I'm a little confused. I don't mean to add gasoline to the blaze, but I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt on possibly hastily typed hyberbole, but "disgust" is a little strong, don't you think?

What I mean is, it's just a website, and I think cup's intentions were good, and he seems a nice enough fellow, so doesn't he deserve a little courtesy too?

It was a pretty inflammatory comment, after all.

That's all.
posted by hama7 at 6:57 AM on April 21, 2003


He does *not* seem a "nice enough" fellow to me, not at all.

Look, you're disgusted by what disgusts you. Ditto me. Simple.
posted by adamgreenfield at 7:23 AM on April 21, 2003


For those keeping score, here's where it started last time. Perhaps you two should take it to e-mail?

On subject, I like the idea of what Young Hae-Chang does, but one piece was enough for me.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:42 AM on April 21, 2003


Dear Adam,

I have taken the time to look through your homepage, interviews, etc. on the web and have come to the conclusion that we both have much more important things to do with our lives. You seem to be a productive and talented individual with your heart in the right place. I have read your interests and your writing and we are more alike than we are different. These comments are beneath you - they are not the comments of one who has accomplished as much as you have. Even if your experiences in Japan have been unpleasant, I hope that you refrain from slinging manure at this nation because the smell of slung manure tends to stick to the hands that cast it. Your many talents are far too important to waste on such negative thoughts and activities.

A lot of people will not take the time to find out more about you and some may judge you based solely on your comments here. In this sense, your comments regarding Japan do you a great disservice, Adam.

Our conversation also does the Metafilter community in general and this thread in particular a great disservice. Let's put it to rest.

Peace.

P.S. My sincerest thanks to hama7, dydecker and PinkStainlessTail for taking irreplaceable time out of their day to read these posts and provide clarifications. My sincerest apologies to Mathowie and everyone else for derailing this thread and hijacking this community for what should have been a private conversation with Adam.
posted by cup at 9:15 AM on April 21, 2003


adamgreenfield: I too find your disgust incomprehensible and your expression of it repellent. Nothing cup said warrants your repeated personal insults. Whatever issues you have with Japan, Tokyo, and foreigners who don't hate them sufficiently, you should work them out in private. You're a good guy as far as I can tell from other evidence, but you're coming across as a jerk here. A word to the wise.
posted by languagehat at 1:01 PM on April 21, 2003


OK, for the record I feel fairly crappy about my part in turning this into a flamefest.

My apologies to languagehat, to anyone else I may have offended, and especially to Young-hae - whose heartfelt work, after all, I merely wanted to celebrate. Similarly, my thanks as ever to stavros.

This is the last thing I shall ever address to you, cup: no "positive mental attitude" worth its name ever releases a human being from the obligation to see, report accurately on, and take appropriate action against the injustices of the world. In my view, this is all I have ever done regarding Japan - or Korea, or America.
posted by adamgreenfield at 9:08 AM on April 22, 2003


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