Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cannibal Spring

Eschatology by Dummies

I'm a bit late off the mark, sure, but I have a few observations about the so-called "Zombie Apocalypse" which occurred last month as the sun was moving from the house of the fish into that of the twins.  Is this the beginning of The End, marked by the transit of Venus, an event as rare as the earth passing through the tail of a comet?  Are the Mayans in on this?

The Cooked....

April 13.  The seeds of this post were planted after reading the strange and amusing tale of "asexual" Japanese chef Mao Sugiyama who, post-op, seasoned and served up his own "meat and two veg" for five diners at 250 bucks a pop.  Make that four diners, one balked at the last minute.  Sugiyama is a true Iron Chef!  This story appeared in Huff Po on May 24.

April 16.  I'd forgotten about the Brazilian cannibals I read about back when that story first broke and have only just now remembered.  There's not much amusement here, only strangeness.  Two ladies and a fellow lured at least two young women into their home with an ad for a babysitting gig.  They then killed the women and dismembered the bodies, making meat pastries which they sold to the neighbors.  This "cannibal cult" called themselves the "Cartel", perhaps an homage to the cartels to the north in Mexico, where dismemberment and beheadings have become par for the course in the drug-related violence which has claimed lives on the scale of a full-on war.

Calling a cult a cartel isn't so strange.  There's a cartel in Oaxaca called Caballeros Templarios, that is, Knights Templar.  A cult, a cartel, a chivalric order....without pushing things too far, one could say they all share quite a bit of characteristics, including laws of silence....

Concerned with reducing the population, the "Cartel" apparently intended to kill three women a year.  Symbolically significant, perhaps, but not quite enough to reverse exponential population growth.  Another motive was "to purify their souls" according to a police spokesman.  This would not be without precedent.  I've read somewhere that both the Aztecs and some Kali cults practiced cannibalism in order to please or approach their respective gods.  This is my body, this is my blood....

...and the Raw

    May 26.  Whatever amusement I got from the Japanese cook tale was completely absent from the events which went down in Miami.  Unless you've been living under a rock, you've almost certainly read about the "Miami Zombie," which began all this Zombie Apocalypse talk.  A naked Rudy Eugene was shot dead after being ordered to stop eating the face of a naked hobo by the name of Ronald Poppo.  We're told this attack lasted 18 + minutes and cost victim 70% + of his face:  nose, lips, one eye, forehead eaten to the bone.  The attacker is described by friends and family as a nice guy who smoked too much pot and read the Bible.  Obviously that book is a bad influence!  He was suspected of being on drugs, the current theory being "bath salts" after the newspapers suggested cocaine psychosis, then mutant LSD.  Even this is far from certain and apparently, some humanity remained in Eugene, for you see, no flesh was found in his stomach (it pays to wait before blogging).  In other words he spat, not swallowed.

    In an interview with his girlfriend after the attack, the girlfriend said that Eugene was either "drugged or cursed."  She hadn't believed in Voodoo before this incident but after she saw the victim's face, she was a believer.  Eugene, incidentally, was of Haitian descent and of course, the Zombie is associated with Haitian Voudon.

    May 25.  Another cannibal murder. Kenya-born Alexander Kinyua eats a houseguest, 37-year old exchange student Bonsafo Agyeai-Kodie, a Ghanaian.  Police were alerted when the head and hands of the victim were found in a trash bin by Kinyua's brother.  The killer had disposed of the torso and legs near a local church after consuming the victim's brain and heart.

    We've already looked into the significance of the severed head and severed hands, both symbols of power.  In a lighter post, we also discussed the Egyptian misunderstanding of the heart as the seat of intelligence.  Without this specifically Egyptian inspiration, I would propose the dismemberment was in fact a way to disempower the victim both literally and symbolically  (deep, huh?).  Eating the heart and brain might have been a way to ingest something of the victims intelligence and emotions, his character; in this the killing becomes the ritual accompaniment to an act of sympathetic magic.  As we will see, another recent cannibal killer took off the hands and head of his victim.

    The Kinyua killing happened, by the way, in Joppa, Maryland.  Joppa is another name for Jaffa, a port city in current-day Israel with a rich Muslim history (a history the Israeli authorities have done their best to gloss over).  It was also the turf of the Tribe of Dan.  A fitting provenance during the talk of a zombie apocalypse, for it is from this tribe that some Millenialist groups have ascribed the origin of....the Antichrist.

    Kinyua also ranted about death cults and mass human sacrifice and had been kicked out of the ROTC. His past violence and notoriety as a ticking bomb will do little to assuage people's suspicions that this kind of behavior was in fact programmed.

    Waiting for the War

    In some forums I've read, comments imply these cannibal attacks are somehow Barack Obama's fault!  Others don't beat around the bush.  According to one, these attacks are a sign America must cut all immigration (now!) according to a post I can no longer find.  [I swear it's true; I read these comments before I started the post and lost the articles I'd read them in among the welter that followed.  This makes what I've just written unreliable hearsay....]  Indeed the "race war" theme seemed to have gained steam in the wake of the Trevor Martin killing.  Drudge often has headlines about black on white crime, usually about gangs of black youths attacking a lone white or a couple, often with a quote "This is for Trevor".  Of course, these are real events, but it's also a none-too-subtle attempt to stir up fear; I propose Drudge is assembling these incidents on his perpetual front-page in order to create the impression of a pattern whose tempo is increasing, linking these events to the Obama presidency without directly saying it, so that swing voters might be persuaded that a black man in the White House is encouraging this kind of behavior.

    The specter of black mobs and violent uprising is a potent and visceral image, which, as well will see, has already been evoked by at least one mainstream politician--a year ago Mike Huckabee made the connection between Obama and the Mau Mau, for instance.

    Ooh Mau Mau

    A few days after all this cannibal stuff broke I got a message on Facebook:  Happy Madaraka Day.  This was on June 1.  This Kenyan holiday commemorates the day Kenya achieved self-rule.  I thought here of the Mau Mau uprising which preceded independence, grokking at the same moment that Kinyua was himself a Kenyan.  Incidentally, the Mau Mau were primarily from Kenya's largest ethnic group, the Kikuyu; the name Kinyua comes from their language and means "one who drinks".  Presumably, the reference is to water, but for our boy Alexander the thirst seems to have been for blood....

    It is said that:

    "The horrors they [the Mau Mau] practiced included the following: decapitation and general mutilation of civilians, torture before murder, bodies bound up in sacks and dropped in wells, burning the victims alive, gouging out of eyes, splitting open the stomachs of pregnant women."

    The Mau Mau uprising is another event evoked whenever someone wants to drop hints about the "upcoming" race war, and the Mau Mau have been linked to our Antichrist/President by more than Mike Huckabee.  There is some basis for this, in fact:

    Sarah Obama, President Barack Obama's grandfather's wife told him that her husband was imprisoned for six months and tortured before being tried in a British court.

    Thing is, this uprising was primarily "black-on-black" crime.  Only 32 white civilians were killed, the rest of the vicitms blacks and soldiers.  Many of these deaths were spectacularly barbaric.  But the English killed about 10,000 Kenyans supressing the uprising, which adds a little perspective.  The Mau Mau didn't hold a momopoly on savagery; English atrocities are well-documented:

    "[E]lectric shock was widely used, as well as cigarettes and fire. Bottles (often broken), gun barrels, knives, snakes, vermin, and hot eggs were thrust up men's rectums and women's vaginas. The screening teams whipped, shot, burned and mutilated Mau Mau suspects, ostensibly to gather intelligence for military operations and as court evidence."

    Cannibals All

    But let get back to the present.  A man, Chinese exchange student Lin Lun, 33, is reported missing on May 24.  In this case one Luka Magnotta, born Eric Clinton Newman (New Man) films himself murdering the poor fellow.  He masturbates with a severed arm and commits another sex act with the corpse.  He also eats some the victim with a knife and fork, so it's not entirely uncivilized.  Unlike another Clinton, our "new man" Magnotta inhaled.

    He mailed a foot and hand to the HQ's of Canada's major political parties.  The other hand and foot ended up in Vancouver, the nearest city to the series of discoveries of dismembered feet floating in local waterways.  Is Magnotta making a citation here?  Is he trying to plant the idea that he may have been responsible for these killings as well? 

    Earlier on, some papers were reporting that Magnotta claimed to have dated notorious killer Karla Homolka.  Her tale involves the abduction, rape and torture and ultimate murder of three female victims.  Now papers suggest this was just another lie by Magnotta, whose very name is false.  (He played a rich porn star online, posing with fast cars and good clothes, but in fact was a bankrupt waiter).  Mythomania and narcissism among his lesser character flaws!

    This initial report of a liaison with Homolka is chilling.  Homolka, you see, did not act alone, but with her husband.  The Canadian feet mystery was first brought to our attention through the theory of the Smiley Face Killings.  This flawed theory suggests that a series of gruesome killing across the nation were carried out by an organized band.  Could the Magnotta/Homolka link be evidence that this is true?  Hey, even if its false, the seed is planted.  A kind of terrorism along the liminal.  Like Kinyua, seekers of signs that something fishy is going on are easy to internet trail of animal cruelty and accusations of necrophilia already had people out for this guy even before he turned his attention to human victims.  An encounter with England's news media alarmed journalists there so much that they called Scotland Yard.

    Magnotta wrote:  “Once you kill and taste blood it’s impossible to stop.”  Another line: “I’ll be back — and this time the victims won’t be animals.”

    Apocalypse Whenever

    Magnotta's story has some parallels with Kinyau's:  both seemed to be mythomaniacs with violent pasts, known to the police.  Their victims were both foreign students.  They both  left a "large online footprint".  Like the Miami cannibal, the attack was captured on film.  Terrorism in the digital age.  Brings all the horror onto your laptop.  (The Brazilian cannibals may have also filmed their crimes).

    As it turns out, Magnotta also frequented white nationalist message boards and penned rather harsh anti-immigrant screeds....and some are questioning whether this was a racially-motivated killing or if the screeds were more of Magnotta's seemingly pathological need to create himself anew online.

    So, these killings are more than rife with weird conspiratorial details which lead us down a variety of rabbit holes.  Anyone looking to construct a conspiracy theory is well-equipped with tantalizing links.  The internet cesspool is a swirling miasma, where the murky waters turn round and round, bits of flotsam floating back into view again and again before going down the memory hole.

    2012 is the new Y2K and we here at LoS marvel at the continued strength of the apocalyptic mindset, how one incoherent book of the Bible continues to exert such force upon the American mind.  Then again, with footage of people killing, dismembering and eating each other so readily available, maybe it's not so difficult to believe that indeed, these are the last of days.


    1. "Others don't beat around the bush."

      Ha, ha, I see what you did there...

      Incidentally, I wonder if we are not actually living in a time of relatively few murders.

      Think about it: used to be that you could pretty much kill anyone and get away with it because there was no DNA testing, no fingerprint testing, no poison autopsy testing, no internet (and therefore no way to check suspects search history), no formalized police training, no way to tell that a bullet came from a specific gun, etc., etc.

      Now it's easier to get caught, it's easier to prove that someone was killed and not just dead from natural causes (as if people weren't natural), and it's easier to spread the word about crimes because of the internet and TV (not to mention the phone, magazines, and radio).

      But, yes, we do live in a time of focus on the end-of-days. It's not the first time people were--on a large, societal scale--convinced of the impending end-of-days, but it is definitely a high-point for the life of that meme.

      1. Maybe you're right. I'm not sure these days are any more brutal than times past.

        "But, yes, we do live in a time of focus on the end-of-days. It's not the first time people were--on a large, societal scale--convinced of the impending end-of-days, but it is definitely a high-point for the life of that meme."

        I should have read this before replying to your last comment! (You'll see what I mean)

        This makes me wonder. Perhaps the fact we're in a millenialist era gives today's crime an extra hair-raising dimension. Every murder a sign rather than a fact of life? Also as you say, the internet brings it all into our lives so quickly. Nothing seems far away. It all sees so at-hand and imminent....

        The combo of apocalyptic fervor and media omnipresence bringing everything to a head?

        Also, the "beating around the bush" thing was purely unintentional!

    2. BTW, the "World War Z" audiobook is really good

      1. Stumbled across this gem of a post today: More than one way to skin a cat and decided to look for an update. Tyler Weinman was cleared after it was determined that several of the cats he was supposed to have killed were in fact killed by dogs. Still, I came across a lot of links suggesting that the next step for a cat killer was humans. Which is apparently exactly the case with Luka Magnotta, who'd posted cat-killing videos before doing the same with a human victim.

        That Magnotta story is so damn sordid. Hard to believe his video is still online! I can't bring myself to watch it. Do you think, Gid, that people who'd watch such a video are sick and/or heartless bastards or is it a defendable curiosity? I once watched one of those Taliban beheading videos and I felt horrible and was truly disturbed. The noise was the worst. I have goosebumps as I write. But still, I understand the temptation.

        I mean, William Burroughs writes about seeing men hung in public as a child, always attended by a good crowd, and I've heard serious proposals that executions should be televised. Maybe the difference is in seeing "justice served" rather than "injustice perpetrated" or maybe people are sick.

        A friend of mine who once lived in Saudi Arabia was invited to see a public execution--beheaded with a sword--and she politely refused. I might have said yes. I have a sneaking suspicion that it wouldn't be as traumatic as one might expect, like, lop! oh, there's his head on the ground. How odd. Or maybe I'd vomit. I just don't know. Maybe I should go and find out.

      2. It's defendable curiosity. Your reaction is what matters, not your curiosity to seek out these horrors.

        Remember our origins: we're cave men, animals, at the DNA level, bred to fight to the death. You don't kill for pleasure, but you were, literally, bred to kill in order to eat and defend your family. And you are curious because we need to know in order to stay alive and protect the people you love. It's one of those bizarre twists wherein love makes you need to know about hate.

        That's my opinion, for what it's worth.

      3. As good an opinion as any! We often forget we're all prolly one step away from total savgery....

    3. Not sure if you've posted this here, yet, but turns out that there were no bath salts in the FL zombie case, just pot.

      1. Which just thickens the plot. What made this guy go off the rails in such an extreme way? Also, a good lesson in nit rushing to judgement....coke, then super lsd, then the salts. All of it just armchair speculation.

    4. Surely the government is just easing their way into letting us know about the impending zombie apocalypse?

      1. His comments are interesting I think and pertinent to the questions I ask below. Is the Zombie meme stoking more of the same? I'm beginning to get spooked by the implications of these cases. I mention four cannibal attacks in my post, with two more since. And now, man bites dog:

        TX Man on Synthetic Pot Eats Family Dog While Animal is Alive

        The prospect of a large wave of synthetic drugs out there turning people into toal fucking maniacs is a scary prospect. We know how ineffective police are at controlling drugs. What violence are we yet to witness? What even further over-the-top fascist measures will we see in response?

      2. Another "bath salts" incident; sad thing is, this article evokes the Miami cannibal but fails to mention Randy Eugene was not high on salt:

        'I'm a eat you': Crazed naked man high on bath salts threatens to eat police officers as they try to arrest him on golf course

        The article is a perfect example of the irresponsible claims your editorial is talking about. Naked, making animal noises....whassup here? Copycat effect?

    5. Gid, you'll find this article interesting:

      The unraveling of Rudy Eugene, aka the causeway face attacker

      I'm not surprised, but I was still struck by the morass of superstition and irrationality surrounding this case.

      Just another freak in the freak kingdom.

      Plus "aka the causeway face attacker" ? Seriously?! No, it's aka the "Miami Zombie". How much PC denial are we expected to take these days? Causeway face attacker. lol. The media never ceases to amaze me.

      1. Tragic ... I didn't realize the Haitian voodoo connections.

    6. "I'm a eat you!" I still burst out laughing when I say that to myself in my cookie monster voice. I am easily amused.

    7. Magnotta set to go on trial:


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