Saturday, October 6, 2007

"This Country Doesn't Torture, We're Not Going To Torture..."


And I've got some land in Florida and a bridge in Brooklyn to sell ya.

Speaking as a former tech from ALT, America's premiere BDSM website, let me break some news to you.

Take a look around, not only do we Americans torture, early and often, we totally love, adore and get off on that shit, in a really big way.

Forget Jack Bauer.

We use torture to sell soap and shampoo for Chrissakes:

It's The American Way, bitch.

God Bless America.


Turtle said...

Good to see this on your blog. I will reference it when I do a related one tomorrow where I credit you.

5 AM and up, so that's one benefit of jet lag.

The news sucks so much it's a real drag trying to catch up at all. I read an International Herald Tribune while I was in France and that covered alot of the BS.

Check the mainpage at today for another possible scandal (involving govt lies).
& that's where I'll put the piece tomorrow that is r/t yours here.

Nyc W. Alberts said...

Thanks for the heads up.


Turtle said...

Well, only 5 comments at DCP all day and at least 2 of them are mine. Sent emails to all sorts of people & heard from 2. Put it up at Silenced Majority & also Docudharma (similar to yours, a little longer, and maybe from a "woman's perspective).

I wonder if anyone gives a shit. Seems sometimes like we go one step forward, two steps back.

Liberals and Feminists were silenced in the Reagan era, Environmentalists after that.

Supreme Court operating stealthily against abortion, military infiltrated by fundamentalists, bases and embassies enlarging in Afghanistan and Iraq, wars spreading to Turkey? Syria? Iran? and the candidates all sound about the same.

No one cares.

Turtle said...

from similar story at Democracy Cell Project:

sparrow said:
Wow, Dianne!

The video and that last paragraph says it all! Anything else I would add would sound trite.

October 8, 2007 11:39 AM
NonnyO said:
Ordinary commercials (which are usually in bad taste or have crappy music) are annoying enough....

Have we gotten so low in our degradation scale under the Bush administration that we can make light of torture, the worst thing we can do to our fellow human beings (and other animals on the planet) and casually accept pseudo-torture to sell beauty products...? (Beauty products?!?)

I find the commercial offensive in the extreme. Eeeeeeeeowwww doesn't begin to describe the mental/emotional recoil I had when watching it.

Gotta go wash out my eyes and disinfect my ears... but how do I get the images and the sounds out of my brain...?

Creepy, in the extreme.


October 8, 2007 5:54 PM
not my president said:
I heard from Nyc, who originally saw the video on tv. He had contacted "Feministing" after that and heard nothing. He was hoping that the more we get this out there, maybe someone would listen to a woman.

I don't know. Maybe it's nothing, but it's bothering the people who have emailed me but not posted - Julie, Elizabeth, Robin (all women).

Torture bothers me. A corporate ad using it to sell shampoo bothers me.

Any ideas where else to send this?

October 8, 2007 5:59 PM
sparrow said:
Maybe they wanted to take advantage of the sexual connotation of having a beautiful woman tied down.

Or maybe it's a statement for women who tie themselves down to look good.

I'm not willing to say the commercial was completely due to our torture policy. I've seen to many comedies where they joke about being tied up.

October 8, 2007 6:20 PM
not my president said:
Well, you see, the person it first offended was a man, a Gulf War vet, a Marine. It hasn't left his mind.

It's not so much the bondage, which as a consensual activity is more common than people would think, and as you say, very common imagery and comedy fodder.

What is bothering both of us is the context and that it is corporate.
In an era when our President is arguing about whether we are torturing and what is torture, and when our Attorney General(s) can't decide either, torture imagery is being used to sell shampoo!

As Elizabeth said, "It would be like joking about child molesting."
Robin said, "It is obvious corporate propaganda to soften the idea of torture."

October 8, 2007 9:04 PM
oncall said:
Was I offended? No, not really. But I was intrigued that making a mass market television commercial includes tasteless "humor" about torture. One has to conclude that the corporate beneficiaries of Bushco policies are so grateful and comfortable with what America has become they can create images and perpetuate concepts that less than 7 years ago would have been absolutely reprehensible to most Americans.

I am waiting for the next life insurance commercial showing a family driving its SUV and it suddenly explodes after an IED morselizes it. Now, *that* would offend me.

By the way, the redesign looks great.

October 8, 2007 9:08 PM
woz said:
I see this ad and think that I'm so glad that I watch only the channels that don't advertise except for there own program promos. Sadly my international channel now advertises, I tune out visually and audibly because I'm always at the computer when the tv is on - fairly softly.

October 8, 2007 9:50 PM
not my president said:
I was offended specifically by the superficial treatment of torture in the context of a time when torture is actually in use.

A little bit ago, I heard on radio Dana Perrino from Bush's office hedging around about torture.

If our society is in denial about torture or many people frankly think it's ok to torture people as long as they're from out of the country, from another religion and might be suspected of doing something against the government, then that still means alot of people think torture is ok.

Torture is not ok.

October 8, 2007 10:12 PM
NonnyO said:
October 8, 2007 6:20 PM
not my president said:
As Elizabeth said, "It would be like joking about child molesting."
Robin said, "It is obvious corporate propaganda to soften the idea of torture."

I'm with Elizabeth and Robin, both.

The choice is to either make a stink about the imagery and give it and the corporation more publicity which would then result in more sales for the corporation (and comments from morons like Rushie McLimpDick about freedom of speech and it's okay if the 'PubliCons do it)....

Or, just quietly refuse to buy products from that corporation and/or their subsidiaries and let them bleed from lack of money, which would result in the ad being taken off the air, too.

I'm allergic to many chemicals and just can't use 99.999% of the shampoos being marketed now because of extreme stinky chemicals (ditto a lot of other smelly things like household cleaning products and candles and soaps and ugly perfumes; I'm probably pre-asthmatic, and I know the same stinky chemicals did trigger my mother's asthma attacks), so I wouldn't buy it anyway.

I just find the imagery and the allusion to torture disturbing and demeaning, especially since women are normally the ones in the position of being the masochists or enacting roles of being repeatedly raped, even if it is allegedly role playing (never did understand the whole bondage thing, so if others like it, fine, but the imagery does not lend itself to fantasies one would associate with loving intimacy or sweet cuddling and private pillow talk or holding hands on long romantic walks by the seashore stuff ~ it just looks mean and angry and painful, like it's something to be avoided at all costs).

So, like everything else, I continue my boycotts started years ago. The penny or two of profit anyone could make off of my shopping habits won't be missed by corporate America, but it makes me feel better (and it's far more healthy for my body!) to never buy products that I can't possibly use anyway, and whose commercials are insulting to my intelligence and aesthetic sensibilities (which is why I tape the very few TV shows I do actually watch and fast forward through idiotic ads).

October 8, 2007 10:30 PM
oncall said:

Yes, I agree the concept of torture was treated superficially. But hey, what's new? We don't torture, our "mission was accomplished", our soldiers don't come home in coffins, and up is down and black is white. Our President says we don't torture. So as long as we have the truth telling us otherwise, there is bound to be a cognitive dissonance which can be used to somebody's (a greedy advertising executive, for example) advantage. Don't get me wrong, I do not condone torture in any way shape or form (and I am sure that is not what you are saying about my comments), but as there has been the steady stream of lies that have been perpetuated on America, subjects such as torture can be viewed by most of the American public with the same nonchalance with which they view the destruction of civil rights and the Bill of Rights. It is up to the Congress at this time to take the stand you are advocating ("Torture is not ok"). If it doesn't do that or Americans don't support Congress if it takes that stand, then torture becomes o.k .....I must agree with you, it is offensive, but I was not offended, I was intrigued and saddened.

October 9, 2007 12:20 AM
not my president said:
No Oncall I didn't think you or anyone else were condoning torture - the commercial and actual torture are kind of two different issues - it's the linkage that presents the potential problem.

I see a big difference between artistic expression, erotic expression, satire and commercialization and think it is the latter, though it uses elements of the former. & underlying it all is a subtext where people are subliminally hearing about things like waterboarding all the time at the same time they are seeing BDSM lite imagery in the media.

It is probably something we as adults are capable of sorting out, though it may be unsettling, but what about young people? I am the last to "protect" them, as I believe real facts about sex, war, hunger - whatever will be more effective than moralizing or hiding stuff. It has certainly proven to be true with my own son.

Being "offended" is kind of a loaded word because it is often used to refer to being uncomfortable with taboo, often sexual topics. In my case, I was uncomfortable only secondarily with potential sexism and found the commercialization to sell a product at a time when even the government isn't being clear about torture unsettling.

We waterboard. We use nakedness in the face of temperature extremes. Those are some of the things Dana Perrino was hedging about. She said Congress had been briefed but when questions probed any deeper she merely said everything was "classified." What a copout.

Right after 9/11, I was fascinated to learn that in Mexico, only 6 weeks later, the most popular Halloween costume was Osama Bin Laden. That would have been completely taboo in the US, though I did see alot of Bush costumes and occasionally some frat boy running around with a towel pretending to be from the middle east.

Mexico is a country that is pretty clear about death. Catholicism is widespread but laughing is a way to deal with the inevitability of death. I've been at the Museo de Mumias (Mummies) in Guanajuato when schoolbusses full of children arrived, and they knew how to assimilate seeing goulish mummies even of fetuses.

Our culture is insulated. We don't see birth or death much. We don't talk about sex and death much, especially with their kids, but they are immersed in confusing sex and death imagery in the media, both in advertising and in reality (news). "News" in particular is so overlapped with entertainment that it's difficult to know which is which.

I swear things are going backward. We have not even had a woman president yet India, Pakistan, Phillipines, UK and quite a few others have. I have been seeing stiletto heels for several years now. Those kill the back and eventually ruin the feet. They are designed to make women walk off-kilter and to exaggerate the way they walk.

It just seems so often like we are going one step forward, two steps back.

Days Left Until Bush Leaves Office, Maybe, Countown Clock