Years ago, I interviewed Paul Hawken, the founder of Smith and Hawken and a first wave, social justice/environmental warrior. Hawken was waxing poetically about “The South.” He wasn’t referring to Georgia, North Carolina and Alabama. He was getting fired up about the politics of South America, the rise of people’s movements and collectives, small businesses powered by micro-loans and an expanding awareness of macro-politics. Hawken saw this wave coming and hitting the US, influencing hearts and minds, a roots-revolution, from Patagonia to Portland, Maine. In retrospect, it was earnest, but magical thinking.
In Venezuela, people are killing each other over crumbs of bread. Brazil is bankrupt. Their Olympics are plagued by the existential threat of the Zika virus, ISIS, toxic waters, and armed gangs. Embattled (suspended) president, Dilma Mousseff won’t even be attending the games.
Argentina is being flooded with Israelis and Jewish money interests, much like how the Nazis escaped from the clutches of the world court and Nuremburg, tribunals. Their economy is once again on the brink of disaster.
Hawken’s dream of the South’s rise has turned into a nightmare thanks to world bankers, flaming occultists and the omnipresent and heavy hand of intelligence agencies, working 24/7 to make the world a safer, more free place.
I’m in Laredo and this is Hawken’s mutated manifestation of the South.
Less than fifteen miles away, as you enter the outskirts of Laredo, you’re greeted by a gauntlet of cameras, surveilling you from every conceivable angle. The classic rock from San Antonio fades into the awkward rhythms and oompa-loopa sounds of Banda, Selena clones singing over farting synths and the occasional folklorico of something more pure and heartfelt, canciones of passion and lament.
Wading through traffic and the shuddering border heat, young men with plastic cups seek change.
Small villages of squatters occupy the precarious shadow of overpasses.
I watch what looks like a Kenyan pedal alongside the freeway.
This is Hawken’s South and it’s depressing as hell. Laredo has become an interzone for human detritus, a rectal colony that evacuates lives with little meaning and even less chance. Laredo isn’t just Hawken’s nightmarish manifestation of the South, it’s the South Node of the North American continent; denied, ignored and left to fend for itself. I have the sinking feeling that it’s a model for the Nuevo Americano city.
We’re here to play baseball. My son plays for a travel team; “Pony Elite.” It’s the Zone series. Winner goes onto California to represent the US at the Pony World Series. It’s fitting that to get to the California coast, we will have to pass through a rung of Hell.
We’re at the Embassy Suites and it’s a totally self-contained environment, with everything you need, including happy hour. It’s not too unlike L. Ron Hubbard’s version of Denver in “Battlefield Earth” where the Psychlos have enclosed the whole place under a dome of their acrid atmosphere, hermetically sealing them off from the oxygen rich and wild environs of the human rebels.
Border towns can be really interesting and lively places, where there’s mutations happening all the time and a miscegenation of cultures creates hybrids of novelty. But Laredo isn’t a border town—not anymore—not by a stretch. San Antonio is a border town—not Laredo.
Being the outlier of our little group, we left Psychlo village and hit the streets of Laredo for some comida authentico. We wound up at a place that served Mayan styled cuisine. They had something on the menu called “Corn Smut.”
I was intrigued.
Here’s the Wikipedia definition of “Corn Smut”; “Corn smut is a plant disease caused by the pathogenic fungus Ustilago maydis that causes smut on maize and teosinte. The fungus forms galls on all above-ground parts of corn species, and is known in Mexico as the delicacy huitlacoche; it is eaten, usually as a filling, in quesadillas and other tortilla-based foods, and soups.
I channeled my inner Andrew Zimmern and dove into the diseased delicacy. Let’s just say that it’s an acquired taste. First, you have to have zero aversion to slimy foods. Spinach would be a good starting point, but even spinach has a little more texture than huitlacoche. If you can stomach a little slime, then the next hurdle is the actual taste, which is a strange mélange of bitter, nutty and slightly musty. We had the empanada version, and after three, committed bites, I was done. It was might attempt to commune with the South, ingest a fungal sacrament, a delicacy of diseased vegetal growth. It was an enough.
Speaking of slimy and diseased, how about the DNC and the overall state of democracy. Here comes some of the astrological stuff.
One time, many years ago, I was walking in downtown Seattle. Now this was before Seattle was getting sexy. Pearl Jam (Mother Lovebone) was reeling from the death of Andy Wood, while trying become “Mookie Blaylock” before the former NBA player sued for use of his name. Kurt Cobain was getting high in high school in Aberdeen and the Kingdome, looked like the concrete mother ship of some uninspired race that had landed, donned flannel and thermals and walked away. Seattle had an edge. It too was a border town in some ways, a jumping off point for Alaska and the fisherman who would work 5-6 months out of the year up in Dutch Harbor under brutal conditions and come back to spend wads of their cash on blow, booze and bimbos.
So I had parked down by the Kingdome where there used to be flophouses, and cheap, monthly apartments. As I approached one of them, headed into the center of town, I smelled something I had never smelled before; It was the scent of burnt leather, sour meat, and a nauseating tobacco sweetness, not burnt tobacco, but leaves bundled and damp, emanating vapors of noxious nicotine rising from a vegetal corpse. I’ll never forget that smell.
As I got closer to the apartment, I saw a gurney covered in a white shroud and two men, bundled from head-to-toe in equally white hazmat gear. This was the smell of death, but not just any death. This was the death of a rotting corpse, the body of somebody long forgotten, dead, alone, likely for weeks. As I watched the DNC over the past week, faint associations of that smell circulated through my mind. I was witnessing the death of the Democratic Party right before my very eyes, a rotting, stinking corpse, led by a woman that is on her own death watch; epileptic, convulsive, and possessed.
The thing that’s amazing, is how open, careless and sadistic Hilary Clinton and the democrats are. They steal the nomination process and it’s revealed through Wikileaks. Debbie Wasserman Schulz was the point person for Hilary (we all know this). How was she reprimanded? She was put in charge of Hilary’s campaign! Not only is the DNC corrupt (as is all politics) but they are sadists. They are rubbing their constituents noses in shit and they are for the most part, loving it.
Mercury has gone into cerebral Virgo and it will be in Trump’s first house for the next three weeks, and he’ll be measuring and cutting for the next thirty days. With Mercury in Virgo, sextiling Trump’s natal Mercury, Venus, and Saturn in Cancer, his populist rhetoric will hit a peak, a blistering crescendo, and then Mercury goes retrograde at 29 Virgo, and there’s blowback, while Saturn edges closer and closer to Trump’s South Node and Moon in Sag. At some point, the debates will be staged and while Clinton and her coterie of Scorpio planets in the 12th house is not only the consummate insider, they reveal a hidden tenacity in the dark corners of her soul.
Trump is no stranger to 12th house dynamics with his own Pluto in Leo there. Pluto is Hilary’s ruling planet and perhaps we’ll see the deep links and growing antipathy between the two, or maybe the citizens of the USA will continue their awakening process and find hidden links between the two seemingly disparate candidates, uncovering yet more collusion and delusion.
The Sun sets into Trump’s 12th House and if I were his campaign director, I’d be very cautious at this time, especially when the Sun conjuncts his natal Pluto, at 10 degrees Leo (8/2-3). Dark revelations emanate.
On the Hilary tip, the Leo Sun squares her Scorpio planets, including, her Sun, just recently, during the DNC. She survived that fixed friction. Now the Sun will rise in her chart, conjuncting her natal Mars/Pluto/Saturn in Leo. That troika in Leo makes her, one formidable personality, all in the 9th house dealing with autocracy, foreign governments and the desecration of religions and beliefs, all Sag exploits in that house. The Sun will peak in her chart on the 29th of August, just as Mercury goes direct. Her most vulnerable position/phase hits when the Sun reaches 22 Virgo and opposes her Moon in Pisces and squares her natal Uranus in Gemini. This is on 9/15 and the revelations explode. It might be even too much for Rasputina to endure. Look for health crises to suddenly emerge as the same time that secret trysts and violations of trust are revealed.
Hang on—it’s about to get good.