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About: Murphy


Posts by Murphy:

Hillary Clinton Is a mad bitch

June 10th, 2010 by

A column by Dana Milbank


[Editor's note: The BEAST is honored to bring you this guest post by living legend Dana Milbank and we dare not besmirch his immaculate prose by editing his work or even checking it for errors. Enjoy!]

I becom increesingly ANGRY with my Post columm. My edators hold me back and its really starting to piss me off. I wanted to say stuff about the oil thing and they were like no someone else is doing that. Write about President Obama getting rained on. Well I’ve HAD IT I went to Yale, I can write good and I want to write abuot whatever iwant . So I figured I had to explor other aditional opshins and I was like hell to the yeah Im sining up with The BEAST Quarterly. then Ian the edator said its not a quarterly and I was like oh cool but I still want too write for you guys. I can do good you’ll see and you’re traffic will go thru the roof. HAS IT? HAS IT? I bet it has now I bet

The oil spill thgin is bad everyone knows it but the questoian is what’re we gonna do about it? Im talking about the taxpayors and us the journalists who have too hold these compnaies acountable, really put they’re feet to the fire but not too close! we dont want them to get burned and collapse the econamy, thats soshalism. It is impertinant to stage an invstigatshion and find the facts in the middst of all that oil floting on top of the gulf. who did it? I don’t know do you? We have tofind out. Theres takl it could be environwhatever terrists and I think thats possibal genrelly speking but then again I dont know. could it be a natural disaster? Maybe but how did it happen? BP doesnt know and if they do their not telling us and now im ANGRY. my secretatary has they’re phone numbers and im gonna cal them later and get to the bottom this real quik, trust papa dana on that 1. ill let you guys know what happens in my next columm. am I getting paid for this

So yesterday I was on cnn

I was just talkin too my friend chris cilza from the Post like me he writes a blog and he was like dude you cant do what I do and I was like dude yes I can you dick. he was like dude omg why cant we do mouthpeace theater anymore it was so good! Iw as like yeah I know but the doosh bags complaned after we said that stuff and man I dont want to hear it anymor and nyther do the boses they gots o much crap dude you dont even know. and he was like yeah I do know cuz I was rite there the hole time you idiot. and I said oh yeah I remember now. he said do you wana go to bens chili bole and get some lunch. and I was like fo shizle my nizle im so down for that rite now starvin like marvin. I had a halfsmoke and it was good but then I couldnt finish it. after that I went to the white house and had a 3 ower convo with rahm god that guys such a dick


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Conspiracy Corner

June 10th, 2010 by

Depleted Uranium: delicious or dangerous?


Late this May, America.gov sought to clear the air on a wide variety of topics: aliens, anti-Semitism, Islam, fake moon landing stories, various 9/11 theories, government synthesized AIDS and more. The page is produced by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Information Programs and, as expected, they endorse none of their cataloged conspiracies. The Grassy Knoll was as obviously bunk as the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, and that’s just as crazy as depleted uranium being more of a health risk than low-toxicity tungsten. With all the ideas given equal weight, the vibe is somewhere between Ted Kaczynski and Howard Hughes. Read More

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The BP Tapes

June 9th, 2010 by

BEAST bug at Podesta Group catches candid conversation


Several months ago, while investigating the apparent ties between former Clinton Chief of Staff, and current President of the Center for American Progress, John Podesta and the fossil fuel industry (a charge he vehemently denies), we at The BEAST couldn’t help but notice: The Podesta Group, the lobbying firm John founded with his brother Tony in ’88, represents BP America. While John’s not been on payroll, for a few years now, Tony has since become a DC powerhouse. Read More

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Everybody Was in the French Resistance…Now!

June 8th, 2010 by

Comic book rock at the El Mocambo, Toronto May 8, 2010

I was backstage at Johnny Brenda’s, an East Side Philadelphia watering hole, when the most un-rock and roll conversation of the weekend was escalating, fast. The night before I was bellied up to the same bar with a stranger, exchanging shots of cheap swill for his cocaine-riddled tales about his escapades with Jane’s Addiction in the 90s. The ZZ Top from the jukebox made his drunken proclamations almost inaudible, and, hours earlier on the other side of the Delaware River, I was front row for one of the last Nine Inch Nails performances, ever.

Argos, at left, and the ghost of Mama Cass -- photo by A. Blake

Argos, at left, and the ghost of Mama Cass -- photo by A. Blake

And now, upstairs in the green room, Eddie Argos was ruining all of it. “No, no, no, it’s not that one.” Argos, lead singer of British rock group Art Brut, was trying to pin down the mid-90s Aerosmith song coming out of the nearby radio before his group went on stage. It was something from the Alicia Silverstone-era and he seemed all too eager to figure out if it was “Amazing” or “Crazy” before the tune hit the chorus. And then came the comic books.

“I’m not joking when I say I like comic books,” said Argos. “I really, really like comic books. Let me show you.” The teeth-rotted, late-20s songster grabbed a backpack and plopped it over his pudgy beer gut. “You see? Comic books!” He wasn’t lying. On stage that night he changed the words to one of his group’s more popular numbers to reflect his love. “DC Comics Makes Me Want to Rock Out” showed up near the end of the set and had a pretty good response. I could hear The Downward Spiral skipping mercilessly in the CD player in my brain as Argos debased the grit and gloom of every drug-fueled angry-at-the-ennui moment since Alan Freed coined the phrased as he seemingly never ceased about his comic books. Argos was on the cover of Rolling Stone overseas last year, and now he was telling me about his personal tour of the DC Comics headquarters from earlier in the week while Steven Tyler bawled at me in crackly stereo. If rock and roll hadn’t died yet, it was happening right in front of my eyes and ears, as Argos, the singer of one of my favorite bands if this decade, exploded his inner nerd all over the room in just the same way dozens of angst-filled teenagers blew apart their skulls to the manifestations of Trent Reznor’s goth rock poetry since the late 80s.

Argos gets squinty -- photo by Blake

Argos gets squinty -- photo by A. Blake

It’s nearly a year later, and with a performance in Toronto this week of his new side project, Everybody Was in the French Resistance…Now!, he somehow managed to elaborate even further on the so-not-rock-and-roll that it is rock-and-roll concept. Each of the group’s songs are penned as a response to a hit of yesteryear. Why did Frank Sinatra have to do it his way? Wouldn’t it have made more sense to call up his friends and ask around first? And what happens to Martha Reeves when Jimmy Mack finally does come back? Let’s just say the guy was angry.

Only 30 seconds into their set at Toronto’s historic El Mocambo, Argos was on his knees in the crowd of merley two dozen, singing about Nazis. The first song of the set, “Creque Allies,” explains the formation of the French patriots assembled to resist the Nazi invasion during World War 2. It reads like a Wikipedia entry, ripe with references to Jean Roulin and Colonel Pierre-Georges Fabien. And yeah, it’s a response to the Mamas and the Papa’s “Creque Alley.” That’ right—the iconic folk-pop hit of 1967 detailing the formation of the late 60s flower power scene becomes as laughable as the whole ham-sandwich myth when it, somehow, is translated to a tale of Nazi repression. Everybody was getting fat with Mama Cass? No! Everybody was in the French Resistance…Now! Rock and roll? I’m still not sure.

After a lackluster round of applause, appropriately coming from a lackluster crowd, Argos didn’t seem all too concerned. “If you think it’s unusual for a band to be playing historically accurate songs at half empty venues in Toronto, try doing it across Europe for a month and a half.”

Even if the premise behind the whole group is a joke and a novelty that could not have been possible without the success of the earlier acts he’s lampooning, it is still pulled off pretty well live. Argos prefaced each number with an introduction explaining the original number and the necessity for a follow up. “No one wrote a song for Jimmy Mack and I felt bad for Jimmy Mack. I was Jimmy Mack,” he preached in a little pre-song banter. Dyan Valdes, keyboardist and co-singer of the group led out a flourish of notes and Argos stepped back up to the mic:

“Hey, it’s Jimmy Mack. Yeah, I heard your track. And if that’s your attitude, I’m never coming back. I haven’t been gone that long—it definitely doesn’t deserve a song.”

Valdes played Motown style keyboards and adds a little girl-group flair with backing vocals. Does it sound anything like the Martha and the Vandellas version? Of course not! But these aren’t meant to be parodies—just responses. The bulk of the songs relied on Valdes pushing buttons on a sequencer and cue-ing up backup tracks, and while her keyboard accompaniment and “press play” gameplan might not fill a half empty concert hall in Toronto with the same punch Argos’ more successful group might, it still gets the point across. Argos relies on banter and more knee crawls across the floor to get his point across. And his point? Let the other guy have his say.

Before launching into a response to Dylan’s “Don’t think Twice (It’s Alright),” Argos explained the need for a response. “Bob Dylan is really good at breaking up with people. I am not. It’s pretty much the only difference between us.”

“I think you wanted clean cut and goodbye, well I fucked that up when I started to cry… Think, and think again, before you say it’s too late for us. Think and think again, I don’t think your mind is totally made up”

Argos destroyed his manhood for three verses before leading his girlfriend and their guitarist into a rousing rendition of “With or Without You.” “If you can’t break up with someone, I recommend you scream U2 lyrics at them,” he said.

It was just after midnight when I stepped back and looked at the chubby Brit in a red vest on his knees in front of me and tried to decide if this was actually something that warranted driving 90 minutes across international lines for or if there was something horribly wrong with me. Live, the music came off a bit weak, the set was short, but the attitude? Full of it. I’d much rather hear Argos and Company tear into “Coal miner” than see Kanye do “Gold digger.” And though Everybody Was in the French Resistance…Now! might lack the balls of Kanye West, they out swarm him by tenfold.

French Resistance spent less than an hour on stage at the El Mocambo and still managed to reprimand Michael Jackson for his wildish ways with “Billie’s Genes” (message: the kid is yours) and even threw in a legitimate cover for good measure: “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend,” a minor 1979 hit for the Rubinoos. The song reclaimed success when Avril Lavigne ripped off the chorus for her tune “Girlfriend” a few years back, and, of course, Everybody Was in the French Resistance…Now! Had their own version earlier in the set. Maybe when you rip-off a rip-off, only then does it become rock and roll?

In that case, someone better start churning out parodies to “Eat It” and “Fat” and hope “Weird Al” doesn’t take charge.

Everybody Was in the French Resistance…Now! Is currently on tour across North America. Don’t be fooled—it might be ridiculous and ungodly nerdy of a premise, but it does, somehow, still rock. Even after all the comic books there still might be hope after all.


Hitchens Exposed!

June 3rd, 2010 by

Christopher Hitchens reveals all in disturbing BEAST exclusive



When I arrived at the ground floor of Christopher Hitchens’s apartment building the doorman who greeted me was wearing a maroon jacket stained wet near the collar and he smelled of alcohol. “I’m here to see Mr. Hitchens,” I said. He nodded and pointed to the large stain. “He got in ten minutes ago.” Thirteen minutes ahead of schedule, I hung around and chatted with the kind soiled doorman before making my way Hitchensward.

Standing in front of the door, I knocked four times, mimicking the opening notes to Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, notes employed by the BBC in World War the Second because short-short-short-long was Morse code for “V,” and thus victory. I was sure Hitchens, a collector of historical miscellanies and a board-certified literary genius nourished as a boy on the BBC, would catch the reference and perhaps commend my command of historical bric-a-brac. I was disappointed by my error. “Enter,” came the reply, and so I did. Christopher Hitchens was sitting with a bottle of scotch in each hand at a small wooden table in the center of a large bare room almost entirely bereft of expected furniture and decoration. There was the table at which he sat, some chairs and hundreds of books lining the walls, shelved carefully and stacked haphazardly under the windows. Elsewhere, bottles of booze arranged artfully and stacked many feet high.”Well,” said Hitchens, drawing out and slurring that interjection often used by intelligent men to preface some profound statement. None came. I stood there waiting as Hitchens, hunched over, eyes half closed, sat staring at me in stuporous silence. I thought I noticed a spot of drool beginning to form at the left corner of his mouth. All around the man an archipelago of drying pools of vomit caked the floor, mapping out his drunkenness. Had he no caretaker?

“I’m here for the interview,” I offered, hoping to prod him out of his torpor toward less awkward realms of human interaction. “I’m with The BEAST.”

“Well,” he said again. Not another sound for two minutes. I feared he was having a stroke and would soon be dead and I would somehow be blamed. The situation was perilously close to spiraling out of control. Then: “Please sit down.”

What follows is the near-complete transcript of my interview with Christopher Hitchens, journalist and polemicist extraordinaire, darling of the establishment, anti-theist Debate Champion(tm), sometimes-socialist, scourge of the left, right, center and fringe. For reasons soon to be made appallingly clear, portions of the interview have been necessarily excised for brevity.

CONE: You’ve been publishing effective journalism and skewering public figures since you were five years old, but this is your first memoir. What did you find different about the writing process?

HITCHENS: (surprisingly coherent, his words free from slurring) In his imperishable and brilliant and beautiful treatise on the plight of young Afghans savaged by the abhorrent Soviet invasion of 1980, Midnight’s Children, my dear friend Sir Salman Rushdie has created, it must be said, a framework on which all my work past and present and future would rely. I owe my every manner of success to my dear friends Sir Ian McEwan, the aforementioned Sir Salman Rushdie, and Sir Martin Amis, whose father Sir Kingsley Amis was a mentor of mine at Oxford–

CONE: I don’t think all those people are really knights.

HITCHENS: –the Troubles in Northern Ireland, where I had my first and last experience of journalistic comity. This is not to say, rather, that I was free from all influence thereafter. Only the recorded existence of the supposed Jesus of Nazareth is less true. So, quite the opposite. Sir James Fenton, the noble Nobel poet laureate whom I proudly count among my various friends, initially made my acquaintance at a protest in London, February 1968, not long before the whole world was to erupt in righteous protest. Sir James instructed me in the ways of the radical and in his own inimitable poetical way was successful in bringing about the ruin of capitalism in at least one corner of that great city. We joined a group of radicals in sitting outside a laundromat that would not open its doors on Thursdays to the masses’ unwashed clothing. It was our solemn goal to bar from entering into that degenerated and bigoted establishment every fascist capitalist who wished to further grease the gears of the machinery of oppression. We stood for hours, arms locked and forming an impenetrable heroic human chain, until the tools of what I then believed to be our capitalist slumlords, arrived with batons in hand. We resisted but in the end they arrested all of us. Two hours later, upon exiting jail, I returned to my rooms at Oxford and typed out in three minutes a 2,000 word story on the events of that day. It would later be printed in the New Statesman. To be a soixante-huitard is not a birthright but–

CONE: Did you just say retard?

HITCHENS: –dear departed close chum and sometimes-advisor Sir Sidney Blumenthal, at whose funeral I considered it a privilege to act as pallbearer and eulogist, was fond of remarking upon the unlettered scene of American letters and–

CONE: I’ve heard your relationship with Blumenthal, again not a knight, rather soured after you accused him of perjury. Also, I’m fairly certain he’s still alive.

HITCHENS: –it is Milton, truly, who provides for us the best example. That this example came before us nearly 400 years ago never fails to inspire awe and astonishment in the minds of thinking men and reasoned women. Forgive me any error for I quote this from memory:

Hail holy Light, offspring of Heav’n first-born,

Or of th’ Eternal co-eternal beam

May I express thee unbalanced? Since God is light,

And never but in unapproached light

Dwelt from eternity, dwelt then in thee,

Bright effluence of bright essence increate.

Or hear’st though rather pure ethereal stream,

Whose fountain who shall tell? Before the sun,

Before the heavens thou wert, and at the voice

Of God, as with a mantle didst invest

The rising world of waters dark and deep,

Won from the void and formless infinite.

Thee I revisit now with bolder wing,

Escaped the Stygian pool, though long detained

In that obscure sojourn, while in my flight

Through utter and through middle darkness borne


So spake the Seraph Abdiel found,

Among the faithless, faithful only he,

Among unnumerable false, unmoved,

Unshaken, unseduced, unterrified,

His loyalty he kept, his love, his zeal;

Nor number, nor example with him wrought

To serve from truth, or change his constant mind

Though single. From amidst them forth he passed,

Long way through hostile scorn, which he sustained

Superior, nor of violence feared aught

And with retorted scorn his back he turned

On whose proud tow’rs to swift destruction doomed.

That is Paradise Lost, books eye-eye-eye and eye-vee.



HITCHENS: –be said that, in a fight, he was the man you would want by your side. Once, on a gray and rainy and dour day some time after the terrible events of September the 11th, 2001 I was walking from the hotel room of my friend and confidante Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz toward my office in the New School, where I am a visiting professor. (Indeed, it was to a fictional Student X I addressed my correspondence in my 2001 book Letters to a Young Contrarian, a slim volume universally praised and winner of the prestigious Pulitzer Prize.)

CONE: That is a lie.

HITCHENS: –journeys and escapades with the Peshmerga, warriors from Kurdistan, the people for whom I wear on my lapel the Kurdish flag. I have worn it for many years, and in fact I have many such pins, all of which are attached to every garment I own. This, you see, is to avoid disgrace. I do not wish to appear ungallant, and the studious and observant and intelligent reader will agree that I have taken the proper precautions in this regard. De te fabula narratur. This lapel pin has landed me in hot water not a few times, most recently when, in the company of my dear friend and lover Sir Martin Amis, I traveled to Peshawar–

CONE: Not a knight.

HITCHENS: –in a terrible scrap; everyone except the two of us were armed. I had only my pen for protection. When the barbarian third-world Islamofascist crowd of thugs charged us, I with my pen and Sir Martin Amis holding a sack filled with his father’s novels, we did what could be expected from two proud defenders of civilization. I stabbed out with my pen, and Martin crushed heads with his sack of novels, and after not a long while we were covered in the blood of the intolerant, our vanquished al-Qaeda enemies lay perforated all around us. We had gored our enemies; we, quite rightly I think, snorted like bulls and made strange movements of celebration. Forgive me my rude solipsism. It was then I decided to pen my next book using their blood for ink–

CONE: This is deeply disturbing.

HITCHENS: –malodorous Clintons, the pair of them interested only in the acquiring and the exercise of political power. It was with great pleasure that I savaged that fraudulent team, guilty of spewing so much piffle, President Clinton especially, in the pages of The Nation and the Atlantic Monthly and the New York Times and Dissent and the Times Literary Supplement and the New York Review of Books and Vanity Fair and the London Review of Books and all those other distinguished publications whom I allow to pay me for my cherished words, throughout the 1990s. The credulity of the American public can never be understated, as Huneker said, or was it Mencken, or perhaps Eliot — T.S. or George, that intoxicating radical Mary Ann Evans? — and I aim to foster a national culture of enlightenment with its basis in The Enlightenment. There are walking among us today many Thomas Paines and Diderots and Humes and Kants, do not be fooled. It is a matter of drawing them into society. I believe, with some necessary assistance, I am capable of so doing. Indeed, my efforts have borne fruit. After the tragic morning of September the 11th, 2001 a previously unheralded President, thought by many petulant and stupid and cross, made America’s mission, quite correctly I should say, to rid the world of terrorism and tyranny forever. My former comrades on the Left, servile cowards to the end, denounced this heroic decision. I savaged them with a fury they will not soon forget. I recall fondly that President Bush and his team were watching with trepidation these unfolding events, and I am reliably told that Vice President Richard Cheney and my honorable friend Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz would thumb through issues of The Nation, debating with each other who would emerge victorious from the battle ongoing in those pages, myself or Noam Chomsky. I am pleased to say that both Vice President Richard Cheney and Deputy Secretary of Defense Wolfowitz — men rather near to my heart — came down on my side. I remember Vice President Richard Cheney’s congratulatory phone call one winter morning, describing how pleased he was with my thrashing of Chomsky, and would I please join him the following week to discuss the long-term strategy of the emerging Global War on Terror? ‘It will be my honor, sir,’ I replied, and I remember well his grunting response before hanging up. It was the grunt of approval. The details of those–

CONE: I have been here nearly two hours and you have not answered my only question.

HITCHENS: (warily) Who are you?

CONE: As I said before I’m with The BEAST. You granted this interview in an effort to promote your memoir, and you graciously invited me to your home so that we might talk face-to-face.

HITCHENS: Did Sir Salman Rushdie send you?

CONE: (hesitantly) Yes.

HITCHENS: In his imperishable and brilliant and beautiful treatise…

I left without speaking another word. As I closed the door behind me he was still blathering about Rushdie, sprinkling over his monologue a few words borrowed from the French, used wrongly I think, and something about his “dear friends” Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Isaiah Berlin.


Consumer BEAST

June 3rd, 2010 by

Modern gadgets, reviewed


Conair 213XP Infiniti Professional Tourmaline Ceramic Technology Ionic Styler, black, with special 20-foot cord

Being the proud owner of a young granddaughter I often take it upon myself to spoil her with gifts expensive and inexpensive, profound and ordinary. It is not uncommon where, upon visiting my home, she will approach me and say, “Pappy, can I have candy?” or “Pappy, can you take me to UFC in Las Vegas tomorrow?” My answer is always yes. Should she spend the weekend at my house and declare her sincere wish for a chainsaw she would have it within the day. Such is my devotion. Read More


Frankenstein vs. the Flotilla

June 3rd, 2010 by

America’s Frankenstein goes on rampage



The Israeli Defense Force attack on aid ships en route to Gaza is a serious crime. The Middle East’s belligerent and circumcised monster has, once again, enraged the entire civilized world with its blatant disregard for human rights and international law. Now all eyes are on its current keeper, President Obama, to see what we’re gonna do about it. Read More


Hipsters Desperately Seek New Anachronism To Claim As Own

June 1st, 2010 by

Originally posted at the Enduring Vision

The hipster community, having exhausted most known pre-1999 lexicons and fashions to reinvigorate, now finds itself in a life-or-death struggle as the lack of a new anachronism to latch on to threatens the viability of the entire social structure.

Experts say the staidness of Converse sneakers, fedoras, and pretending to enjoy Pabst Blue Ribbon could sideline the whole hipster community unless a cutting-edge anachronism can be discovered. Read More

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